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Showing posts from February, 2017

Pablo's Tortillas

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One day we rode across the lake to visit a place which holds many stories for the Lutheran Church.  After serving as a refuge for frightened and fleeing families, this well-hidden place rested.  Pablo and his friend, Rubén, made a home in the abandoned shelters, watching over the land.  They planted and they gathered.  For seventeen years they took good care to preserve and to encourage the natural beauty of this place.

The Lutheran Church is now in a time of reflection.  Time has healed some of the wounds of war among the people, enough so that they are needing and wanting to share their stories.  The land beside the lake holds some of these stories and has the potential to be a place of healing, telling, listening and learning.  This land also has the potential to produce fruits and vegetables, coffee and herbs, which could help sustain the church.  A new guest house has been constructed from selected trees which accompanied the people when they took shelter beneath their branches.  …

Trabajar y Orar: Working and Praying for Good

If you are a frequent reader of the stories which are told on this page, you may remember that on the day of the Women's March in Washington DC, there was a small action which was taken here in El Salvador on behalf of a girl who wanted to attend seventh grade.

A few weeks ago, we received the sad news that although all of the prayer and work had been accomplished to register the would-be seventh grader for classes, she had not yet attended.  The reason:  the school prohibits head scarves and the girl's father would not permit her to attend school without her head scarf.  Her faith tradition is Pentecostal, and in this particular Christian sect, women cover their hair with a white mantillita or small head scarf.

The school is a public school.  Many girls and boys from the local Pentecostal church attend classes there, as do children from many other faith traditions (or no faith traditions at all).  All students wear uniforms.  In the past, some of the girls with head scarves h…

Off the Beaten Path: Block Party in Apopa (Festival Cultural Noé Canjura)

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Block by block, street by street.

In my US home city, we talk about strengthening the safety of our city, about growing our city economically and ecologically, about building relationships among people in this way:  block by block, street by street.  This strategy is not unique to the US.  In El Salvador too, people practice this idea of tackling big problems bit by bit with small successes.  "Our phrase we like to use," said our pastor, "is sí se puede."

This weekend, we participated in an event which could best be described as a block party and it was much more than a small success.  It was fun!

Off the main road, behind the shopping center, there is a little neighborhood beside a little street which connects other neighborhoods within a city that is anecdotally and statistically unsafe.  Within this little neighborhood, families are rooted.  They built small homes in the 1960's.  They survived the war.  Generations multiplied.  Children grew and left and ret…