The rain has well and truly arrived in São Luis and it does interrupt the work quite a bit but it hasn’t been non-stop rain yet so work carries on as much as possible.
Daniel has had help again from various folks in the church and we were able to arrange a day for a team to come and help on Saturday to break the back of the hard labour. The call went out to various people and we thought a small handful might appear but, in the end, there were loads of folk, including 3 pastors from the church and some of the men from our small group which was really encouraging. The team finished the foundations for the columns and helped level the ground for the new flooring. It’s amazing what can be done with more people in just a day. We were really pleased with how the day went and Daniel´s sister´s feijoada (black bean and meat stew) seemed small payment for the hard work put in! Some of the family helped out too and it was great to see, including Daniel´s eldest brother Antonio who was visiting. He lives 6 hours away and this is the first time I´ve met him. We were relieved that the rain stayed off apart from a couple of light showers.
Unfortunately it didn’t work out having Mauro Victor with us from the recovery house. He decided to leave the house after Christmas with his girlfriend so we are recruiting trainees again. The relationship continues with the house though and Daniel, Rafael and a new helper, João, went to David’s House to weld a gate that needed more security.
This week was the 57th anniversary of the church, which called for special services and celebrations. There was a choir, a quartet and a visiting pastor. Last week there was also a special harvest and sowing service when blessings are shared from the past year, as well as prayers for the year ahead. It was a very visual event, with people bringing fruits to represents blessings from 2016 and writing down hopes for 2017. It may sound odd, but it wasn´t really. They often do things ´big´and ‘visual’ here.
We continue to meet with Daniel´s nephew and his wife for regular bible studies and commit them to your prayers. Daniel continues to lead the family service on a Monday evening and has been using ‘The Stranger on the Road to Emaus’ material.
Back to the rain and it brings with it all kinds of insects: moths, flying ants and mosquitoes which spread delightful diseases. Roads become waterlogged due to the lack of a proper draining system and traffic often comes to a stand still. Check out this road on the way to a busy A and E hospital:
On a lessser note, The house becomes a nightmare to clean as the dirt from the often unasphalted roads is trapsed in (any excuse not to clean!). On the upside, the temperature comes down a bit as does the size of my hair and at least we don’t have to battle with snow, though it is nice to see people’s snowy photos on Facebook.
As ever, do get in touch if you have any queries.