The first week of class are already behind us! Wow, we’ve already covered a lot of ground and feels good to start to settle in and find a new routine between classes and host families. Here is a glimpse of the story in pictures:
Monday afternoon Randy Borman, the Director of our partner organization la Fundación Para la Sobrevivencia del Pueblo Cofán spoke to us about his personal life growing up with Cofán and context for the space where we have been staying and will take classes. He introduced us to some Cofan university students who also live and study on the property. FSC is a non-profit organization that works to preserve and fight for indigenous rights of the Cofán peoples. The Cofán are among the oldest surviving indigenous cultures in the Ecuadorian Amazon.
Spanish class with María Teresa
Tuesday afternoon we began our series related to Ecuadorian and Andian history. We sometimes invite one of Nina’s colleagues from the Universidad Andina to join us for this session, but unfortunately his schedule didn’t allow. So Nina led our first of three history sessions, providing a pre-columbian, Incan and Spanish conquest overview.
Kat with Cat
Spanish class with Silvia
As a Wednesday afternoon tradition we all headed over to the Casa Goshen neighborhood for a time of reflection and conversation. There is a lot that happens informally each day, but we also try to create a designated time for group processing.
Hannah, Joel and Gretta
Cadence, Kat and Mary
Hannah, Noelani and Chino
Spanish class with Loli
Hanging around the foundation after lunch
Thursday afternoon Katy Alvarez a professor at the Universidad Central came talk with us about the history of Ecuador 1600-1950s… an excellent summary of early, middle and late colonial periods, relationships with Spanish crown, independence and the catholic church.
Friday we spent the day in the historic center of Quito
Looking north towards Casa Goshen and the Fundación.
La Basilica Nacional de Quito…. can you see them? 🙂
Looking south along the valley towards the Panecillo.
Always walking uphill or downhill!
La Plaza Grande in historic center. Presidential office and residence and Mayor of Quito offices.
La Compañia de Jesus. One of the oldest and most famous of the many historic churches in Quito, construction started in 1605. Still runs a daily mass at 8am.
Quito is among one of the oldest cities in Latin America and just being downtown makes you feel connected to the past.
Friday afternoon we visited Jonathan Minchala in his classroom at the Alliance Academy an international school in Quito. He talked with us about some of the connections between liberation theology and indigenous spirituality, which made for a great discussion.
Jonathan’s a good friend of ours from Quito Mennonite Church, he’s currently working on his doctoral thesis and co-hosts a podcast called Merienda Menonita through Anabaptist World.