Saturday, January 10, 2015

Culture Lesson - The Weird, The Bizarre, The Baby Shower

We had our first experience with a Peruvian baby shower yesterday.  People in Latin American celebrate a baby shower and they don't translate the name in Spanish.  They simply call it a Baby Shower.  Even though they took the tradition and name from English speaking countries, they definitely made it their own cultural tradition.  In the States, guys and children are not invited to a baby shower, which is a fantastic rule.  Peru, however, everyone is required to go.
The invitation said that we were invited to a baby shower at our church for one of the couples that are members of the church.  The invitation said it was to start at 5:00pm.  The following events will tell the tale of what progressed.
5:00pm.     There is no living human being in the church building.
6:00pm.     People begin to show up to the church building and continue to arrive until after 8:00pm.
6:15pm.     We begin singing hymns
6:25pm      Pastor Wehrner opens up in prayer.
6:30pm      Wherner preaches a short message on babies.
6:45pm      Lupe, Wehrners wife, begins leading us in games that they do at a children's birthday party.  The chairs are spread out against all four walls of the building so that we are all sitting in a big rectangle.  There is a lot of clapping, singing, and dancing.
7:00pm     The clown shows up.  Yes, I said, "the clown."
7:10pm     The clown begins his 1 1/2 hour act.  This is not a performance, but is mandatory audience participation.  The clown plays many games, and there is much singing, dancing, and magic tricks.  The clown makes people from the crowd participate in foolish games such as pretending they are a super hero rescuing a lady who is acting out her house burning down.  Other games included the parents of the baby putting diapers and bibs on two unsuspecting participant.  More singing, dancing, and embarrassing acts commenced.
8:30pm     The clown pauses his act so Wehrner can pray over the food, which is then served to everyone the rectangle.  There were snacks, cake, popcorn, chicha morada, and various other finger foods.
9:00pm       The clown begins the second part of the act.  The couple having the baby are set in front of the box of gifts that were brought.  The couple must guess what is in the wrapped box, color included.  If they guess right they are rewarded with nothing.  If they guess wrong, they are punished by a willing participant in the crowd drawing on the face of the husband with a marker.  The husband's face was well plastered by the end of gift opening.
9:25pm      The clown thankfully closes his act and more food is served. Chicken and rice, sandwiches, cake, and other things.
9:40pm      Finally it is time to try and clean up a disastrous mess with people lingering and kids running wildly.
I have never been to a baby shower in the States, but I would guess that it is a whole lot different.


Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Devotional - by Emmy

Emmy always is trying to model her dad.  We us my book for family devotions, so Emmy decided to start writing her own devotionals. She did it all on her own and then brought me her first day.  She wanted me to post it on our blog so here it is with her spelling and grammar.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.  And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.  God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.  God called the light "day" and the darkness he called "night."  And there was evening and there was morning the first day.
We should try to wake up and be in a good mood.  And should be thankful to God that we lived other day.  You might not like mornings but be thankful.

Are you thankful?
yes         no

Do you read the bible every day?
yes         no

Draw something you are thankful for.

I hope this helps you.


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Back in Cusco and More Baptisims

We made it back to Cusco without problems.  The trip started out with our plane from Helena being one hour late and then a frozen plane in Minnesota that we had to change.  However, it was all smooth after that.  We traveled a long ways to get to Cusco and never slept for 29 hours.  We dropped the suitcases at the door and went to bed. 
We enjoyed many things about our time in the States, but we are very glad to be back in Cusco and back with our church family.  The prayer meeting tonight was full and it was excellent to sing and pray again in Spanish.  It was so good to be with our Peruvian family once again.  It looks like ministry will not wait and I will be very busy right away.  We will be baptizing two more members soon!  Miguel, a man in his 50's, has been coming faithfully to our church for around 8 months.  God saved him during his time here and it seems he is really growing.  However, there are family difficulties because of his new faith.  Wehrner's brother Breitner is the other guy being baptized.  We attended his wedding in August of last year.  He grew up knowing Christianity, but did not want anything to do with it.  About a year ago, God really started to work in his life and convict him of sin.  He was saved and is now growing greatly in the faith.   
Our apartment made it through the time fine, other than an infestation of sugar ants who ate 100 times their weight in Fig Newtons from the States the first night.  We are now in a war with the colony using chemical warfare as well as hand-to-hand combat. 
Thank you all so much for your prayers. 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Returning to Peru

Our time is over in the States.  Time flew by and it seemed that we never had enough time with everyone.  We leave tomorrow at 6am from Helena to Minneapolis to Atlanta to Lima, and finally arrive in Cusco Tuesday morning, God willing.  Please pray that our flights are not canceled, we have no problems with immigrations, and that all our bags arrive.  There is plenty of snow and it is still snowing in Montana, as well as a winter storm warning for tonight, so please keep us in your prayers.  Please pray for us as we leave Chase behind as well.  It will be an adjustment in Cusco without him.  Please pray that God will give us grace to trust in His sovereignty no matter how our travels go.  We enjoyed our time in Montana, but we are also excited to get back to Cusco and the work of the ministry.