Stories of Renewal: Opening New Doors
In the beginning of 2017, the Saint Paul Area Synod distributed 11 micro-grants to congregations wishing [...]
This week's reflection includes thoughts from two members of the recent delegation to Cristo Luz del Mundo in Santa Amelia, Petén. Como Park Lutheran and Lutheran Church of the Resurrection are mutually partnered with Cristo Luz del Mundo, and they traveled together.
Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, Roseville
Our time spent with Cristo Luz del Mundo (CLdM) was excellent. We experienced two baptisms with the new baptismal font, constructed by one of CPLC's member's father. They jokingly exclaimed it was more beautiful than the one at ILAG, and are happy to have this beautiful work. The congregation's members are more upbeat and participatory than our delegations have seen in the past. They are gaining recognition in the community by having lived through a crisis and surviving. Leadership of children, youth, and women were very noticeable. We enjoyed Q'eqchi lessons, learning activities based on the Reformation, creating s'mores over an open campfire, and playing baseball or tossing Frisbees in the open spaces. On this trip, each household received a water filter for healthy drinking. For our next trip, we will help extend piping from each member's inside stove to the outside of the house to promote healthy breathing.
The trip had its up and downs, of course. We are constantly warned about the corruption, thievery and violence in Guatemala, but have not experienced it - until now. The fact that we were comfortably having dinner in a nice restaurant when our things were stolen was a god-send. It could have been worse. The fact that we stayed safe and comfortably housed and fed despite a bridge collapse on the main road back to Guatemala City was truly a sign that the staff at ILAG go to great efforts to ensure our safe return. While we experienced our own discomfort, we were all inspired by the positive changes we were seeing in our partner congregation, Cristo Luz del Mundo.
Como Park Lutheran, St. Paul