Departure

Ready to fly

We left before dawn for the airport.  The streets were quiet.  So were we, for the most part — each to her, or his, own thoughts. Three months ago this short bus ride marked the beginning of a journey.  Now the journey comes to an end. The luggage was unloaded, then checked in at the … Keep reading »

Perspectives

Benjamin

During the retreat two students presented original writings  — Anna read a letter she penned for her presentation and Ben recited a poem he drafted during a time of reflection on our final day.  With their permission, the two pieces are reprinted below.   LETTER TO A DEAF CHILD IN PERU Dear Somebody, You are … Keep reading »

Retreat

Kauai Retreat Center

Retreat is a time to share, reflect, play and prepare for the students’ return to the United States.  We traveled south to Kauai, a retreat center owned and operated by Scripture Union and strategically located on a quiet stretch of beach.  The students began with presentations of the research they conducted, through face-to-face interviews, during … Keep reading »

Service in Cusco — San Martin

Rosa (left) assists Senora Gabriella (right) in the classroom -- all of the children are hearing-impaired

St. Martin School for Special Education (Centro Educativo Básico Especial Don José de San Martin) has a special mission:  to educate disabled children.  Each day parents bring their daughters and sons here to Cusco’s Wanchaq district — on foot or by bus — to give their children an opportunity to learn and develop with the … Keep reading »

Service in Cusco — San Francisco of Assisi

Iglesia de la Merced (Church of Mercy)

Cusco is a magnificent place.  As the capital of the Inca Empire, it was so central to their people’s existence it became known as “the navel of the world.”  When Francisco Pizzaro and his motley cohort of conquistadores came upon the city in 1533, they marveled at its order, design and architecture.  Nearly 500 years … Keep reading »

Service in San Jeronimo

Blue skies over San Jeronimo

San Jerónimo is located along the main highway that connects Cusco, the region’s capital, to Puno, the port city at the edge of Lake Titicaca which forms the southeastern boundary of Peru.  At 3,245 meters (10,646 feet) above sea level, the sun shines brightly most mornings and rain clouds often gather in the afternoons — … Keep reading »

Service in Huacarpay

Leanna with Juana (right), a health promoter for the PROSIM project

Huacarpay is home to perhaps five hundred people — it’s hard to tell.  This one-street town at the edge of Huacarpay Lake was inundated by flood waters in January 2010 and life has still not returned to normal.  Frightened residents moved to higher ground on a ridge that overlooks the lake during four days of … Keep reading »

Service in Lucre

The village of Lucre is tucked into a verdant valley and nestled between high mountains

Lucre, a mountain hamlet of 4,000 people, is nestled between steep slopes and framed by blue skies.    The first Mennonite Church in Peru was founded here in the 1980s and each Sunday a group of Spanish- and Quechua-speakers worships here.  On the other days of the week the members of Iglesia Evangelica Menonita de Lucre … Keep reading »

Service in Ayacucho

Ayacucho, the Stately City, is home to this and 32 other colonial-era churches

Ayacucho, the “stately city,” is the political and economic capital of the departamento (state) of the same name.  Locals call the city Huamanga.  Thirty-three catholic churches dominate the skyline, one for each year of Jesus’ life.  At 2,761 meters (about 9,000 feet) above sea level, the skies are clear and sunny most days, with warm … Keep reading »

Service in Huanta

On the road to Huanta

Huanta, the “Emerald of the Andes,” is situated at 2,627 meters (over 8,600 feet) above sea level.  Despite the high elevation, the sun shines almost every day in this protected valley and the daytime temperatures are warm.  Home to over 80,000 people, this small city feels more like a mountain town.   Most of its inhabitants … Keep reading »