Conversations: ministry update

IMG_2856 (584x800)Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:13-14)

I was so amused at the sight of the donkey and kids riding it (see left photo). I thought I was transported to the Biblical time when people used donkey as their mode of transportation. (To be honest, it was my first time to see a real donkey.)

On May I was blessed to see the other reality of Colombia. From the prosperous city life in Bogotá to this quiet rural community of the Zenú (indigenous group) in Córdoba, one hour flight and four hours bus ride from the capital city. CEPALC held a series of workshops on Prevention on Adolescent Pregnancy among the Zenús in primary and high schools and partner women organizations. Continue reading

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Adapting like the ostrich

A visit at the Ostrich Farm

A visit at the Ostrich Farm

“Three months. It takes three months for a newly born ostrich to fully adapt to the environment. Within that time, they are taught to adjust with the weather, food, and relationships (especially for domesticated ostrich),” a tour guide explained during our visit to an ostrich farm outside Bogotá.

Woosh! (Colombian expression of wow) I am in Colombia for almost four months now, a few more weeks from today. Just like an ostrich, being in a new place, with different culture, tradition, faces, food, and a lot more, it took sometime for me to really absorb everything. I remember some mornings when I wake up, it felt like I am back in the Philippines and then a minute after, reality strikes—I’m in Colombia! Continue reading

I Am Number 31

IMG_0967(On arriving well)

“Do they see Jesus in me? Do they recognize Your face? Do I communicate Your love and Your grace? Do I reflect Who You are, in the way I choose to be? Do they see Jesus in me?” (Joy Williams, Do They See Jesus In Me)

On Thursday (Sept. 26) I called the Philippines’ Consulate Office here in Bogota, Colombia as courtesy and to be connected with them. I expected a Filipino secretary to answer or to talk with (because I really miss speaking Filipino in a foreign place), but surprisingly the staff is Colombian and could only speak Spanish and no English. Well, blessedly my friend at CEPALC helped me to communicate with the secretary and tried to explain my point.

After my friend put down the telephone, he said that he asked the woman of Filipinos in Bogota. The secretary said that there are only 30 Filipinos in the city, and I am the 31st. Continue reading

Right foot in, left foot out

(On leaving well)

Before I even announced my official send off, I am surprised to know that my families and friends are more than ready to let me go. The fact that I frequently travel and live in different places, mission service outside the country is not new to them. But reality strikes. I will be gone for 20 straight months, inclusive of special holidays: two Christmas and New year away from my family and friends. I am not a drama queen but it was an emotional process to undergo. Anyhow, for the last days in my home country, I learned to gradually have my right foot in, left foot out. Here is my personal list of “leaving well.”

IMG_0598 IMG_0606 IMG_0617 IMG_0619 IMG_0621 IMG_0623 Continue reading