When the team was preparing for this trip, we had a feeling that something special would happen on this trip. We didn’t know what that would look like… until today… Festival day!!
Through some twist of fate (haha… God did it…) we just happen to be here in Chanco when they were having a festival to celebrate the promotion of the kids from the school year; the completion of the new road; and the birthday of the former mayor of Chiquimula. We were told that it would be a big celebration, and we were invited to attend.
When we arrived in the morning, we were asked to sing a song at the promotion event, so we grabbed our gear and headed down to the school house. There were about 40 kids and about 20 parents in the room… man it was tight. We sang Happy Birthday to the former mayor, and sang “Blessed Be the Lord” for the group. They all clapped along and enjoyed the time with smiles and appreciation. The Principal of the school commented that we are both involved in doing the same thing: teaching the people of Chanco. What a special affirmation of the work that is going on here.
After the morning celebrations at the school, we were invited to join them in their main tent where the Marimba band was playing. The community leaders, and the mayor all took turns giving speeches and giving and receiving plaques and hand shakes. It was very formal and yet very familial. After the speeches, they had a ribbon cutting celebration and the mayor was proud to give us a piece of the ribbon.
It was a great day for the team to see the whole community at one time. God put us in this place and time so that we could reinforced relationships with community leaders and simply be present during this historic event.
My personal favorite moment of the day was Renee dancing with the local women. Someone made the comment that she is on everyone’s cell phone in the village. What a great thing! God has most certainly reinforced our place in the community and I trust that many more people will recognize us when we come to their door to share a story with them.