Monday, January 9, 2017
January 9, 2017 Belize Mission
Hello everyone in cold places!
Our team of 20 people have arrived safely in sunny, cool Belize.
We arrived on Sat. evening and were able to get up bright and early on Sunday to travel to the far reaches of Mayan Villages: Otaxha.....9am Mass was extra special. Our parishoners from Assumption Church in Ofallon MO graciously sent an older tabernacle with us. All the parishoners of St. Mark Catholic Church in Otaxha processed singing and carrying the tabernacle that Fr. Don blessed and then used during it first mass in the parish. In appreciation we were all invited to stay for lunch and enjoy the beautiful sight from the top of the hill.
Monday classes were held in three villages:
Blue Creek -where inflatable globes were a big hit as Phil and MaryAnn taught longitude and latitude. Dawn and Fr. Don had a fun time discussing how to measure a circle and then went on to challenge the upper grade students to measure a bubble or two. Sir Cumference in the book read would be proud of them!
Corazon - The name of the game was HEALTH and HYGIENE. Sister Rose and Jill ha a great time disucssing "Dem Bones" and singing along; as well as challengng the students to use their five senses to identify smells and items hidden inside balloons. Tammy and Becky (two of our new nurse volunteers) enjoyed making friends with students as they discussed hand washing and teethbrushing. They also had a great turnout of the women from the village as they did a presentation concerning Women's Health Issues and Diabetes.
San Lucas, the smallest of all the villages had the most volunteers. There were 6 construction workers who began preparing and laying tile in the church we helped build years ago. The ceramic tile will be in the shape of a beautiful cross as you approach the altar. Many of the men of the village wanted to help as well. We will even post a few photos when back home of some of the students laying tile. Of course that was lunch time because they were busy in class writing pen pal letters, and doing art projects....they younger students did a pig art project and the older students painted a mask and added feathers and designs.
Our final note of excitement involves our afternoon visit to the HOPE CENTER. This is the senior center in Punta Gorda where over 25 seniors come to spend some time while enjoying healthy snacks. We added to the joy when we played numerous games of BINGO and gave prizes of small bags with hand soap and lotion. Sr. Rose was a big hit as she called bingo and led everyone in the HOKEY POKEY. Good thing Mark and Jill took blood pressures before the dance. Lots of hugs and return invatations sold us on returning next visit.
A busy day and it is time for dinner..........maybe some chicken caldo........Can't wait to tell you more