Sunday, August 30, 2009

Prodigal Son

We had a great Sunday today, lots of Jessica's classmates and their families came to our informal cafe church this morning. We held a small Sunday school class and then spoke to the parents explaining the story we taught to the children. In this afternoon's service the theme was the prodigal son, Maxi and the radicales did a dramatised version of the story and then Scott did his first proper spanish preach on the prodigal son .

Jessica saturday in Cusco

Friday, August 28, 2009

Thankyou Vale Community Church

One of our link churches in Bedfordshire have sent some of their procceds from their holiday club to support our work at the Cafe church. Vale is really special to us since it is also a church plant which started a year ago at the same time that we left the UK to move to Peru. Last year we visited their holiday club which launched their church plant , right from the start of their church they said they wanted to look wider than themselves and have a heart for supporting overseas mission.What a lot has happened in a year for them and us! To God be the Glory!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

In the Dog house

well since Pinky the dog left us for sometime the only thing inside his kennel was a pink plastic tiara and some of Jessica's drawings. Would you believe we now have a new resident there, a tabby cat! I tried to take a photo but the cat ran away!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

an interesting Sunday

children listening to a story during the sermon

coffee and cake after the service

great to see church looking quite full for part of the service.

Well only one person attended our informal cafe iglesia drop in this morning, but we were delighted that he returned with his family to our afternoon service! Work here often seems to have no pattern to it one week few people come another week many. We had a great kids club yesterday with about 20 children and we held a small bible study with a few mums and older sister while the kids had their class! During the course of our afteroon service today various people wandered in and out and you can see from this photo that at one point it was really quite full! We pray that seeds are being sown and we are really encouraged that a few new families are attending regularly.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Scott watches Liverpool

this week Scott and a number of folk from our church enjoyed watching Cusco's football team Cienciano play Liverpool. Although it was an international game it was not Liverpool from England it was Liverpool from Uraguay!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

preschool bilingual music group

choosing musical instruments

enjoying the new handpuppets (thanks Kate)

listening to the story of Noah's ark

the BIBLE that's the book for me! hopefully you can just about read the letters they are waving

Well this week was our second meeting and it was great to see new families attending. Our hard work giving out fliers in the park is paying off and we had 6 families come and enjoy singing and dancing. We use props and also tell stories as well as singing english and spanish christian and secular songs. Two of the new mums tell me that the concept of mums and toddlers groups does not exist here and they are so happy to be out socialising as well as stimulating their little ones. We pray that in the weeks and months ahead we will deepen our friendships with these families.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

celebrating our first anniversary here in Peru!

What an amazing first year it has been. Praise God for his faithfulness , one year down the road
we are happy and settled we have new friends, we are managing to make ourselves understood in spanish and the church plant is thriving. Gracias a Dios!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Toys for the cafe

large pile of finger puppets

king and queen hand puppets

lovely soft cuddly animal hand puppets

What a treat to find a parcel waiting for us when we went to the post office today. Kate from Union Baptist church, one of our link churches sent us a parcel with puppets cards and dressing up clothes for the childrens' corner in the cafe as well as some small gifts for Jess and Sam. Last week I was playing with a 7 year old girl who has learning disabilities while the radicales manicured her mum's nails , as she got more and more excited she was pinching me as well as throwing wooden blocks and wooden jigsaw pieces around and I thought we really ought to have some softer toys! It is wonderful to work in partnership with our link churches and great to receive such wonderful toys that the children will really enjoy playing with.
If anyone else would like to send us toys puppets or dressing up clothes for the children to play with in the cafe our address is Apartado 34, Cusco , Peru .
Thankyou Kate !

well done Samuel

Today at school Samuel did a talk in Spanish in front of all his classmates on the subject of journeys. He showed some photos and spoke about his recent journey to Arequipa. He is only 4 and he is speaking Spanish so well, we are absolutely delighted with him!The writing on the gold star around his neck says felicitaciones por tu exposicion!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

starting to feel like church

The cafe chairs set up for our more formal church service Sunday afternoon.
What an exciting time we had! A new family heard by word of mouth about us and so came and joined us, also a lady and her daughter who we met this afternoon when we were giving out flyers in the park came along. The church is no longer a student meeting but we are starting to work with people of all ages which is great! Tonight for the first time we had a weekly offering and at the end of the month we may even have a short (5 mins) church meeting to talk about how to distribute the money! Cultural experiences continue to amuse and frustrate us, could you imagine in England leaving your 2 year old and going out to the supermarket to buy bread because the service was slow (45 mins) to start?
Praise God that he is sending us new people and that our work is really starting to take off! After months of slogging at language and more recently Scott in particular worked really hard preparing the cafe church it is such a joy to see our hopes, dreams and plans starting to happen what a wonderful God we serve!

playing kerplunk at our informal sunday morning cafe church

using musical instruments during singing time

Scott playing dominoes

Nidiam sharing verses from the bible with 2 ladies who hope to start up a bible study group.

This morning we had a wonderful time at our informal Sunday morning cafe church. Quite a few families came ,some stayed for the whole morning; we had a Sunday school class and played games and sang songs , families also played games at their tables, children enjoyed having their faces painted and some people were very interested to learn more about God as we chatted with them at their tables. People who we had met over the course of the week returned and we are feeling so encouraged. When it was time to close the morning we gathered everyone together to share a verse from the bible and to pray together the start of what we hope will one day become a morning service very exciting!!!!!!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Kids club in the cafe today

board outside the cafe church


learning the bible memory verse for the day

making sheep

juice and pancakes at the end of a busy morning!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Ups and downs of 1st stage church planting

This week has been full of highs and lows. Highs when Scott made good progress with gaining the license for the cafe church and also had good language lessons. Lows at our frustration with few people attending the cafe early on in the week then highs when people walked into the cafe later on in the week saying they have been looking for a church for some time. Highs when Anjanette enjoyed teaching a mum and young daughter to learn some english , lows when Anjanette was frustrated this week in her own spanish language lessons.Highs when on Sunday morning a lady expressed an interest in learning more about faith promising to return, lows when on Sunday afternoon she didn't return. Highs after a large attendance to the youth meeting last week, lows when none of the new students returned (we since learnt that their college was on holiday this week)

We are increasingly learning that we need to learn patience and to celebrate the highs but try not to be too discouraged when the lows come!

The main road where the cafe is situated is in disarray the police have closed one side of the high street as the two sides of the bridge are being welded together. As the workmen make progress with the building of the bridge please pray for us that we too will succeed in building a bridge with the community.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

English class

Yesterday despite a huge amount of interest shown nobody turned up for english class. The radicales tell me this is normal in Peru even in universities often people are late or don't show for the first week! Well we are going to advertise more and try a later time to see if that suits people better, in the meantime we had a practice class with the radicales and Jess and Sam helped with the practice which was great fun, we were teaching them how to introduce and describe themselves . Now the radicales appreciate how hard it is to try and speak a foreign language I think they understand us a little more! Please pray for us as we try to work out a timeteble for the cafe that people will attend but also that fits in with our family life, things are quite a juggling act at the moment!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

cafe church

a few pics of tonight's cafe church meeting

Sunday morning cafe church

Jessica usually likes to have mariposa facepaint

Nidiam sharing her story of faith

Jackie playing games with the children

Mery teaching the children and yes Samuel is wearing a jacket shirt and tie!

delighted that Michael and Maxi 2 students from our church group are working in the cafe too!

Praise God for a great morning our second Sunday morning cafe church style. We were starting to wonder if it was really going to work since no one was coming and Peruvians tend to spend all day Sunday with their families, then 90 mins after the advertised start time about fifteen people came to the cafe! We served free drinks and pancakes, did facepainting , played games, had a small Sunday school and had a good long time to chat and share with the adults. One lady in particular expressed a desire to know more about God and plans to return to our church service this evening. Please pray for wisdom as we try to work out the best strategy for this very informal Sunday morning meeting. Whilst we have been in Arequipa this week the radicales held the fort, they have been doing questionnaires in the universities and had the cafe open for business including many new students attending our Thursday night youth meeting.

Friday, August 7, 2009

God provides us with great friends in Peru

It has been so good to spend time with our Norwegian friends Andreas and Margaret and their lovely daughters, Margaret is a missionary kid who grew up in Peru , Andreas Scott and I had fun together in language classes, we have a lot in common as we left Europe and moved to Peru at about the same time, leaving good friends was very hard but how wonderful that God has provided us as friends for each other and how amazing to hear our kids speaking fluently to each other in spanish.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Return to Arequipa

feeding the pigeons in the plaza de armas

fabulous snow capped mountains in the distance

excited about the bus journey!!

We are enjoying being back in Arequipa staying with friends for a short family holiday. Perhaps we did overdo the warm clothes for the bus journey , but Cusco bus station at night was quite cold. The Arequipa weather is quite different and we are so enjoying the heat and sunshine here!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

more fundraising

Stan and Barbara Crees from Carshalton Beeches Baptist church, our church from 2000-2004
hold an impressive annual garden party. Stan sells crafts and plants to help overseas projects and he kindly designated the plant sales money to support our cafe church project, thankyou and God bless you Stan and Barbara!!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

ordinary people with inspirational stories

Doug and Sam in their cool Peru jackets!

We would like to tell you about our friend Pastor Doug. He is a widower in his late 50s , he and his wife had a dream to serve God overseas. Well sadly she became ill and for years he nursed her through her terminal illness and some time later decided to pursue the calling that God placed on their lives so he said goodbye to his job family friends and home and moved to be a missionary in Peru. We studied at language school with him, he will soon be travelling to Ecuador where he will take teams into the jungle to tell them stories from the bible and work alongside them sharing their lives. At a time when many would be getting ready for retirement Doug is getting ready for the next adventure , we are inspired to see God using ordinary people to do extraordinary things for him !