Vinings Lake Church Goes To Bolivia
The primary reason for this trip is to support the Ayore Indians. These people are both lost and forgotten by their own Bolivian government. The Ayore’s live at or below the poverty level and have little to no means for basic medical and dental care. During this 10 day trip we will be building a storage unit, replacing a septic tank, reroofing the village church, teaching a women’s ministry and hosting seven vacation bible school classes.
Mission participants consist of Cheryl Kowaleck, Mary Tillberry, Gary Edwards, Suzy Edwards, Jeanne Bapov, Dori Martin, Brenda Esters, Tony McCarver, Marci McCarver and Tom Howard.
We will leave on July 27th and return on August 6th.
Please keep us in your prayers!
August 4th 2011
Reason 1: Barb wire puts holes in clothes Reason 2: Barb wire rusts Reason 3: Barb wire could be very dangerous during an electrical storm And the Final Reason: It can cause head wounds to tall American women... Oh yes, we had an on the job injury today and I will start by saying that Marci is doing just fine. After a very touching women's ministry the ladies headed back to the Barrio Bolivar Nutrition Center for lunch with the men. They were doing various construction jobs at the actual center today. I must admit that the Nutrition Center is such an amazing place and something that was greatly needed by the Ayore at Barrio Bolivar. The story is extremely sad but I will share...every year children under the age of 5 were dying of malnutrition. ... read more
August 3rd 2011
As I entered into the TWR kitchen at 7am this morning, Gary had a very sad look on his face. I walked over to the breakfast table and overheard that Walt was no longer letting the men go sightseeing and shopping with the ladies today. After we dried Gary's tears, we loaded the bus headed for Santa Cruz. We stopped on the way at a beautiful pottery shop where I purchased my new favorite accessory...a black leather cowboy hat! Once we arrived at SAM base a very interesting rule/regulation was shared...no flushing toilet paper. I know this doesn't sound like that difficult of a feat, but let me assure you it is one of those things you do involuntarily. And once you drop it...it must be fished out! No bueno! I'm going to invent a scooper ... read more
August 2nd 2011
Today was our last day at Poza Verde and we went out with at BANG! It has become a running joke with the team that Gary would die of hunger if he had to hunt his own food. Well, today he finally proved us all wrong. Brenda, Cheryl and Mary decided to take the first shuttle to Poza Verde with Drl Placido and Gary…bad idea! Little did the ladies know that the drive was going to take a sudden turn of events. As Gary spotted a tree full of buzzards, he screamed with excitement for Placido to stop the truck. He grabbed the 22 rifle that he has so sadly had no luck with throughout the week, with a new zest. He knew this was his moment. I suppose he didn’t want to get his “high ... read more
August 1st 2011
So I officially blew up a hairdryer today that did not belong to me. I know, why in the world am I using a blow dryer in Bolivia? There is only one good explanation...it was only in the 50's today...not just any cool weather either, it was wet, cold and windy...not to be combined with wet hair. So anyway...I got out of the shower before dinner turned the thing on and all was going well until it sped up immensely, blew a few sparks and shut off. Dang adapter didn't work and now I have to attempt to find a place to buy a hairdryer in a third world country...good luck to me! As I said previously, we had pretty nasty weather today but the show must go on... The men were up bright and early ... read more
July 31st 2011
Today was the final day of the Ayore conference. The women's team attended a portion of the church service in Puesto Paz and then took on children's entertainment duties to allow the adults to better participate. In this indigenous culture kids are not disciplined and when I say not disciplined I mean absolutely NO discipline. This creates a very disruptive environment for the conference. We did another VBS...this time, the story of the Crossing of the Red Sea. As Marci told the story Suzy and I drew the picture of it in the background. We are amazing artists as you will see from the pictures...Sike! We pre-stenciled the paper with light pencil so that we "looked" like amazing artists...haha! The kids loved it and were extremely occupied...thank goodness! We then did a Red Sea craft. After ... read more
July 30th 2011
So we finally were able to teach our first VBS today. After all the preparation and practice the ladies group was ready to perform. We began with songs. Emily (Toni's daughter, 13) and Jessica (Bev's daughter, 16) learned an Ayore song and sang it for all of us before we officially got started. They practiced all night last night. It was so cute! Today's lesson was The Passover Story...such a fun one with so many interesting surprises for the kids. My absolute favorite part of the lesson was by far the most chaotic...as Suzy told the story in English and Toni translated, the rest of us were waiting anxiously for the part of the story where God plagued Eygpt with FROGS. As Suzy approached this part of the story, we threw hundreds of paper frogs all ... read more
July 29th 2011
The first major construction project is officially underway. The men's team spent the last 2 days building a porch at the Poza Verde mission house. This will be used primarily for outdoor meetings, bible study and general socializing. Due to late night "hunting" the guys team was a little more tired than entirely necessary and were therefore famished and a little grumpy when they arrived back at camp. Ok, so I'm exaggerating Gary went hunting, Gary was famished and Gary was grumpy! Just kidding Gary! By the way, there is supposedly no animals in Bolivia...I believe that someone needs to brush up on their hunting skills. Anyway, we had another wonderful meal by Sindi, had a team meeting to discuss the days events, went to the playground to check out the stars, and then called it ... read more
July 29th 2011
I'm sure you are wondering about the out-house and I promise to get to that point eventually... The day started with a gorgeous sunrise and coffee. It was just chilly enough to require a light jacket. The team met up in the general dining room for breakfast, which was amazing...thanks Sindi! A few of us cleaned up a bit and then made sandwiches to have at today's destination...Puesto Paz. So, today 13 of us had only 1 truck to get to our location, so guess what is not illegal in Bolivia...7 people riding in the bed of the truck. See that wasn't nearly as funny to you because you do not realize that the red dust is like baby powder and winter time in Bolivia means windy time in Bolivia. Put that together and what do ... read more
July 28th 2011
Although the excitement has steadily risen throughout the journey, this is one group of tired folks. We did not have a very smooth trip from Miami to La Paz due to a thunderstorm and American Airlines concrete seats. Many of which did not recline, poor Brenda and Cheryl! Our host team brought coffee and homemade cinnamon buns to the airport and we did a little breakfast tailgate. It was super sweet of them and we all felt very welcomed and appreciated. Next was loading the van with 20 suitcases...no big deal whatsoever if you compare it to the 2 hour drive on narrow dirt roads that came next. No bueno! Check out the pics! On to lunch and then Poza Verde!... read more
July 27th 2011
It is 9:21pm and the team is eager to get on the next flight to La Paz. We have a small layover and then onto our final destination...Santa Cruz. Team VL will be arriving at 7:30am. We have already learned so much about each other...such as Cheryl has serious motion sickness, Jeanne takes lots of vitamins, Brenda cries while reading, and Gary's parents (in their 70's) are out on the town tonight!!! I must admit that Miami airport could use a serious AC upgrade. Haha! While enjoying delicious Cuban Sandwiches at La Carreta we enjoyed a very interesting spectacle. Half way through our meal employees began walking from table to table asking if anyone lost a bag. Next thing we know a police officer and police dog appeared. The two-some evaluated the bag. The female officer ... read more