Saturday, July 16, 2005

Hello again to friends and family!

Here we are again, basking in yet another one of the Carribian's favorite past-times...This one, Hurricane Emily passed us yesterday with nothing but high winds and lots of rain, nothing that we can't handle!

This week has been exhilarating, one of our busiest here, and this Saturday finds most of us sleeping in and getting some much needed rest. We have come to the point in our trip where we are past the getting to know you stage, settled into our homes and jobs, and the time is beginning to fly by. It is now less than a month until you see our bright and shiny faces again!

Teaching in the Bateyes is going amazingly well, for most of us English is the favorite, and seeing the kids advance from simple words to phrases has been such a joy. Teaching everything from "Hello how are you?" to our favorite phrases such as "Wassup" and "That's rad" has defiantly been the highlight. The other half of our morning teaching in the bateyes, tutoring has been more of a challenge. Even for those of us that speak Spanish, our attempts to explain math and language skills has put us all to the true test of our patience and abilities. No one can quite remember the last time one of us did long division! Nevertheless, being in the bateyes three days a week getting to know our kids and building relationships has been such a blessing, and it is becoming more difficult every day to think of leaving.

Monday our afternoon plans were changed suddenly by our amazing intern coordinators, Drew and Dana. Instead of our normal afternoon activities in the Bateyes, we were driven (in our favorite COTN vehicle, 'vericose van') into the amazing hills that surround Barahona for a hike that ended at a waterfall/river. We spent the afternoon swimming, floating down the rapids on the single enertube we brought and having time together, without having to think about work. Mondays are our "church days", and this week we were able to sit on the banks of the river and have our time together, with an awesome word from a friend of Drew & Dana, Maile.
That night a few of us were taken by our families to a concert put on by one of the local churches that included everything from mime acts to ribbon dancers, to a group of men who rapped Kirk Franklin in Spanish! Holler back.

Tuesday we began yet another one of our summer projects, updating all of the information in the COTN Child Sponsorship program. With over 500 kids in all three of the Bateyes, it is a huge job that includes interviewing each child, getting their measurements and taking their photo. With all of us working together we were able to get the entire batey of Algodon finished this week, which was a huge blessing. Tuesday night was also the beginning of another Pentecostal revival in Barahona (there have been 2 since our arrival) and the biggest one to come through town in over 5 years. With a large stage and over 1000 people, most of us attended with our families.

Wednesday was spend tutoring and doing our usual activities in the bateyes. The sports and games team now has two solid soccer teams, one in Algodon and one in Los Robles that will hopefully face off against each other at the end of the summer. We also spend the day helping Drew and Ben plan for the first ever Young Life event that will happen tonight (Saturday) in Los Robles.

On Thursday we had the privilege of cooking dinner for the staff of COTN. Well, we helped cook! San Cocho, a favorite Dominican dish (the equivalent of cooking steak for people in the states) was on the menu, along with brownies and lots of fruit and rice. We gathered at Drew and Dana's, ate, talked and danced to the music of the revival that could be heard from across the street. It was awesome to be able to spend time and get to know the people that make this mission run here in the DR, and hopefully we will have an opportunity to be able to do it again soon.

Friday during our afternoon soccer practice in Algodon hurricane Emily unleashed her wrath! No worries, it was nothing unusual, just buckets of rain and wind- which cut our time there a little short, but we are all fine and well.

So there you have it folks! The week in review, brought to you by your loving COTN interns. As mentioned, tonight is the first Young Life event which will bring together the youth of Los Robles and Algodon, and is the first youth ministry project that COTN has taken on. Please pray for wisdom for our speaker, for energy for us interns, and that the youth may see that life with Christ is more than just words on a paper, but that it is real and exciting. Oh yes...and for the weather :)
Tomorrow we leave for our mid-summer retreat, and will be returning on Tuesday night with three weeks left here in the Dominican Republic. Crazy how time flies.

We hope that you all are doing well, we love you all so very much. Thank you again for all your thoughts, prayers and emails! We are now able to use internet, so please drop us a line either personally, or here on our blog (you can leave comments blow!). Hasta luego!

Your Interns,

Tyler (numero uno)
Gib (cejas!)
Brent (machete man)
Carissa (teacher of the ancient guitar)
Brittany (still Missionary Barbie)
Kirsten (sigue la fiesta!)
Laura (has no fear of cockroaches. large or small.)
Kelsey (the laugh factory)
Michelle (brownie maker extrordinare)
Carmen (can someone bring sushi to the airport?)
Emily P. (my name is on the Great Wall of China)
Erica (found the chub!)
Emily F. (mother superior)


Blogger Carmen said...

Hey! I'm so happy to hear from you guys. It sounds like your having an amazing time. We're all praying for you guys while your away that you would all return safely! Carmen, I'm so sorry I didnt get anything in the mail for you in time, but I definately will have it waiting when you get back. I'm so excited for you to get back but I know your having an awesome time. Write me back when you get a chance-Luv Ya, CArmEn #2:)

2:10 PM  
Blogger Scotty E said...

Kirsten! You're my girl. Keep up the superduper work and I can't wait to hear more. Best of luck with hurricane Emily. Emilys seem to really suck.

3:08 PM  
Blogger TSM said...

So sorry to hear about your van accident.We hope no one was seriously hurt. We did hear one of the girls may have broken her nose? ouch! You can probably do without that type of bonding experience!Was the accident before or after your retreat? I hope you have all recovered from the experience. We pray the Lord continues to watch over all of you.
Elizabeth and Thomas

5:42 PM  

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