Quite a bit has happened since I last updated my blog. The biggest event is that I have now officially begun working with the baseball players in Bayona. On Tuesday, I met with the coach, Chulo, a 23 year old Dominicano, who invited me to come to the practice the next day. I spent Wednesday morning practicing with the team and getting to know the players. We ran, warmed up, played soft toss, and did some infield and outfield drills. After we practiced, I sat down with them and did a quick and very impromptu English lesson over some basic words that are useful for baseball players. Their interest is there, but it's a little difficult to get all of them to pay attention at times. I'm sure that it is part of the teaching experience and will improve as lesson plans are set and communication improves, but prayers for patience with that would be great. Tomorrow, I'll continue to work with them in the mornings and hopefully have programming in place soon. In the meantime, they'll continue to whip me into shape on the field!
The rest of the work that the group has been doing has been focused on two houses. One house, for a woman named Corina, has had a lot of progress done of the past few days. All day yesterday, the group from Alabama worked to get cement mixed, so that the family living in the house would have a paved floor. Today, they primed the walls of the house for painting tomorrow, and everything should be done by the time they leave! The other house being worked on is for a husband and wife named Vijo and Glendi. They work with Mission Emanuel, along with their son Javier. It is a blessing to be able to work on a house for them, as they have put some much time and effort into the God's work in Cielo. It is truly a blessing to see them being blessed. The work that has been done at that house has mainly consisted of tying and placing rebar throughout trenches that had been previously dug. We were going to do some work on it today, but there was a heavy rain this morning, and it was too muddy to be able to lay the cinder blocks that were planned to be set in place.
This morning, as is the case with most Thursdays at Mission Emanuel, the group made its way to a Leprosorium where Dominicans with leprosy are treated and live in community. While we were there, we had the opportunity to sit and talk with some of the people living there, as well as have a time of worship with them. One woman from the group from Alabama was able to share with all of us what going there means to her. She has been there 3 or 4 times and every time, she is blown away but what God shows her. The people there are so joyful and praise Christ for the life that he has blessed them with. They constantly tell the visitors how happy they are to see them and that they hope God blesses those who visit. I am overwhelmed by the opportunities that I have here, as I get a greater glimpse into the life of Christ through those I encounter everyday.
Tomorrow is our last day serving with the Alabamians, so please keep all of us in your prayers as we work throughout Bayona and as they travel home. Thank you all so much for your support!