I have experienced a lot of death in my life. Grandparents, friends, parents of friends, car wrecks, suicides, illnesses...I couldn’t begin to count the number of funerals I have attended and the heartache I have witnessed firsthand. And I never thought anything of it until late high school/college, when I would actually hear friends say they were going to their first funeral. First funeral?! How did you make it this far in life with never going to a funeral before? Why has my life been so different?
January has been a month of new experiences. Two such experiences stand out most clearly in my mind. In our last newsletter Greg shared with you about our new office location in a part of the city called Alto Selva Alegre, but as of that newsletter we had not actually obtained the office. Shortly after the new year, we signed the lease and began work on our office space. Painting, sanding, and cleaning are not special things, but being a part of a community, that is special. That’s the first new experience we had in 2009.
As the new year kicks off and the team takes a look at what lies ahead, there are two things that really stand out. Even before we left the States, we knew securing our long-term visas would be a major hurdle and one of the primary points of uncertainty and concern in the early phase of our work. It continues to be. The short of it is that we need a church established in Lima to have a formal legal status in order to vouch for us to the government. The church has had difficulty attaining that status, but we received word recently that they have made good progress.
My parents’ visit was such a blessing! Greg told me it would be a time of refreshment, and he was exactly right. We had a great time with our first visitors, and we certainly didn’t mind Ana’s attention being on someone else.