Last year a young boy named Daniel worked at the church with us. He is from Horquetas. He speaks no english. He has a developmental disability.
We were awake with the dawn again this morning. Breakfast consisted of rice and black beans. I´m beginning to think it is the same batch of rice and black beans that we had on Monday. But, whatever...I´m still eating it. I hope I don´t regret it.
The majority of the concrete was poured yesterday, so we were left to work on the top layer today. Of course this meant that we would be doing it all by hand. The cement mixer was gone. I love that cement mixer. I miss it. A lot.
We were able to mix the cement by hand sifting sand through handmade sifter. It was basically chicken wire nailed to a few boards. It held up pretty well. It is amazing what you can get done here...even with just a little. We added cemento (spanish word for cement...seriously) and agua (as opposed to aqua, which can be the color of agua....ironic, eh?) and mixed it with platas (shovels, not plates). Luis, our handy foreman used a trowel, some rebar, and an old, knotty board to make the floor smooth. I wonder if they will ice skate on it?
Some of our members spent some time painting and did a wonderful job turning the fence aqua (as opposed to aqua, which is water...).
Another crew worked to turn the parking lot gravelly with the leftover piura (i have no idea if that is spelled right...or even if it is the right word...but that´s what i´ve been calling it all week.....somebody google it for me!).
The afternoon was spent finishing up the cemento and playing with the ninos. Lots of fun and sweat.
At the very end of the day Lillian, our missionary friend, sat us all down in a circle with Pastor Don Carlos (Saint Carlos) and his wife Isabelle. We shared the different ways that we were touched by his ministry this week. One person said,"it felt like I was coming home". Another said, "it was wonderful to see the progress you have made on the rooms we worked on last year". Pastor made a few comments as well, thanking us for our gracious giving and assuring us that the work we have done will multiply as they work in mission. Isabelle had a tearful goodbye. She was overwhelmed with love for the group....and it was reciprocal.
Then Daniel got to speak.
I´m not sure if I´ve heard him say more than a few words consecutively, until that moment. Most times he would just look the other way when you tried to talk with him. Language can be a huge barrier....
He told us about how much he loved Don Carlos and Isabelle. How they are like parents to him. He told us how much he loved us. How we are like his brothers and sisters. He told us that he was very sad to see us go. He told us that he loved us.
It was a very moving moment. Very moving.
Often times we cut people off when they are trying to speak. Especially if we are not sure what they are going to say. The missionaries, Pastor, and Isabelle...along with us...watched, waited, and listened. Then we were moved.
Few experiences will resonate so powerfully for me...as this one will. For a moment we were truly listening. God, I think, was clearly speaking. Love is in the air....and we heard from a young boy, a boy that had a day.