Saturday, February 25, 2006

a 5 min update

We're doing well. Played some music last night to kick off the Evangelism Conference. It continued today with teaching this morning and this afternoon we'll be teaching a session. Tonight it we go with it to the Carribean Mall to do the traditional evangelistic activity of handing out tracts. Not too excited about that but I suppose that God can use it. And, hey, it might be an effective strategy in this culture. You never know 'till you try.

Sunday we'll play all music in all three services, Monday night there's an all night prayer vigil before going to the beach to evangelize on Tuesday. ...that's a funny word to me. Evangelize. "Brace yourself. We're going to evangelize to you now. It won't hurt very much." I´m much more comfortable running around on all fours entertaining small children. Or spreading the good news of how Jesus changes lives by living a chaged life and expressing that through inderect words, actions, and music. Maybe it's just because I like subtlety. Maybe it's because I'm chicken. Most likely it's because I know that my friend Jedi would scoff if someone told her they had all the answers. I don't have all the answers. I just know the one who does.

I don´t have my cable with me today to get any pictures online but I´m hoping they'll come soon, too.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Travel -> Puerto La Cruz

Sunday morning we flew west from Mendoza over the tallest mountain in North and South America (Mt. Aconcagua) and stayed for the afternoon in Santiago, Chile. We got to visit our friend Greg there who had been a pseudo staffer for us in the first half of the school. The next day we left early and flew to Caracas, Venezuela (a very familiar airpot by now) and stayed overnight at the church that had stored those heaps of equipment that were too heavy to fly to Argentina. An enjoyable surprize was that later that night, the team from Jamaica arrived also to the same church and we got to share some time together (1am-2am) before getting up (5:30am) to go to the airport again. This time we brought every ounce of equipment along because we won´t be passing through Caracas again as a team.

So we climb into the plane and fly east toward the rising sun...
No, wait. That´'s not how it worked.

We arrived 4 hours early and used every one of them trying to check in. We finally got our boarding passes and our luggage checked in time to hurry to the gate. Where we waited. And waited. And then boarded. And waited. And waited. I woke up to the captain telling the passengers to get back off the plane because of a luggage imbalance. We hadn´t left the gate. So we got off and I had a nice time spending the next hour or two playing the guitar while some of the others napped. When we finally boarded again, things went more smoothly and around mid-day the plane struggled into the air using close to the entire runway.

I'm glad that I slepped through the landing. I hear it was scary. Karl is really impressed with how much I can sleep through.

And now (after waiting a while for our ride) we are here in the Venezuelan costal city of Puerto La Cruz and very excited for the work to be done. We will work with a church that has 900 weekly attendees who are mostly youth ages 16-30yrs. We'll attend a prayer meeting tonight nd clarify what our job will be but I already saw the professional-looking poster hanging in the church advertising the Missions conference that starts friday. At the bottom is has a note that the special musical guest is "JuCUM Mérida". That's us!

We'll be here on the Carribean coast in Puerto La Cruz for about 9 days before moving to the river port of Puerto Ordás on the Orinoco River for another 9 days. Then we'll take a bus for the long journey back to Mérida.

Pictures to come. Eventually. Internet access is less available here and starting tonight things will get busy. Chao!

Friday, February 17, 2006

So much to say, so much to say

...and I can't come close to sharing it all. But here's the last two weeks in brief:

Concerts.
(We worked hand in hand with a couple of churches as we performed in three different plazas. I almost exclusively worked with the tech aspects, sang a little and played even less)



Children's home.
(We visited this place with about a dozen kids with enough energy for two dozen and we had a blast.)



Worship workshop.
(We led an evening workshop on worship at a local church and had a great response.)



Work.
(We spent a day cleaning the "pool" at the YWAM farm. We painted a building. We cleaned up a place that had seen some neglect... cleaned the attic and sanded down the windows to be stained.)





The desert.
(In three days we visited families, pushed our truck through the sand, and lost a wheel from the trailer while coming home.)



Fun.
(We spent a morning touring Bodegas and tasting the area's delicacies.)



Rest.
(Just enough to get us by.) [Photo from Karl]



--

Tonight we played a concert in a church after slapping together a sound system that we'd never used before. I must be learning a lot about running sound when I can make mistakes that I see as drastic and the team doesn't even notice. All in all it went well. It's the people and relationships that matter the most, right?

Tomorrow we host a series of hands-on workshops for worship, guitar, rhythm, and sound tech. I'll be teaching the session on sound tech and it'll be fun to put all my new Spanish vocabulary to work combined with some of what I've learned through the years.

And Sunday we leave for Venezuela!
We'll stay 1 week in the city of Puerto La Cruz on the ocean in the east. Then we'll be two weeks in Puerto Ordas (Also in the east, but inland by the famous two-color river). The following week will be debriefing with the other team back in Merida.

It will all pass so very quickly.

Sunday, February 05, 2006