A Prayer From Guatemala

A Prayer From Guatemala

Lord, help me to always respect others.  Their lives are different than mine, not necessarily worse.  Grant me ears to listen, eyes to see, and a heart of compassion.

Read the experiences that prompted this prayer at http://www.revmother.org/2014/02/the-artist-maria.html

Artista wy filter

From Guatemala: Wednesday Night Church

From Guatemala: Wednesday Night Church

Writes Maggie from Guatemala:

I went from feeling confused, left out, and generally uncomfortable to being in the moment.  I was drawn into the speaker’s words and indeed felt el Espíritu en esa lugar ( the Spirit in that place).  I don’t know what I expected the night to look like.  I do know that I was glad to worship among these followers of Christ.  Praise be to God. Alabaré (I will praise).

Maggie Sebastian, a member of Condon UCC, continues to write about her experiences in Guatemala. She is currently in an immersion language program at a school in Xela (Quetzaltenango). Later this month she will join the Providence Hospital Surgical Mission Team as their chaplain. Read Maggie’s full post here.

Lessons From a “Chicken Bus”

Lessons From a “Chicken Bus”

Writes Maggie today,

“I witnessed such poverty. Not in a neighborhood or particular area as I am used to seeing. Everywhere. Poverty. Houses made with corrugated tin, scraps of wood, concrete blocks or some sort of combination. Dogs roamed, bones poking through their mangy coats. Cows grazing on any spot of grassiness, some healthy, some severely underfed.”

Maggie Sebastian, a member of Condon UCC, continues to write about her experiences in Guatemala. She is currently in an immersion language program at a school in Xela (Quetzaltenango). Later this month she will join the Providence Hospital Surgical Mission Team as their chaplain. Read the rest of her offering here.

A view from the bus of homes in Guatemala.

A view from the bus of homes in Guatemala.

No Ruins: What Would Jesus Do?

No Ruins: What Would Jesus Do?

tourguideOur own Maggie continues to write about her experiences in Guatemala. She is currently in an immersion language program at a school in Xela. Later this month she will join the Providence Hospital Surgical Mission Team as their chaplain. Writes Maggie,

“I confess that, standing there while our guide, a former guerrilla and resistance fighter, told the peoples’ story, I felt helpless and embarrassed.  American and Canadian companies are the primary villains in this story. And Totonicapán is not the only department suffering.  While fighting these huge conglomerates is going to take more than I am able to give at this moment, I will find a path.  In the meantime, I purchased two small items in support and solidarity.  Now I need to ponder what would Jesus do?” Read her entire piece here.

First Day of School

First Day of School

Condon UCCer, Maggie Sebastian is blogging from Guatemala this month. She begins her month in an immersion Spanish language program. Later this month she will connect up with the Providence Surgical Mission Team as their chaplain. Writes Maggie:  “Rosario operates a small eating establishment next door.  For breakfast, I was the only customer at that hour.  There was evidence of previous customer, however.  I was served an egg, fried plantains, and tortillas – a typical Guatemalan breakfast. Once consumed,  I skittered off for the school with one tortilla in my bag.” Read the whole post here: http://www.revmother.org/2014/02/phone-frustrations-and-street-shopping.html

Member Arrives in Xela

Member Arrives in Xela

Maggie's bed.

Maggie’s bed.

Maggie arrived in Xela (also known as Quetzaltenango) yesterday afternoon. She settled in with her “middle class” host family. She has a spartan room by American standards. The whole family gathered around the kitchen table to meet her upon her arrival.

 She blogged last night before bed from the comfort of her room. (Find it here.) She has a few photos in the post. (If you click on the photos, you can see larger versions of them.)
As I ramble about this huge parsonage alone except for my furry companion, I look at those photos of a Guatemalan middle class family and realize that phrases like “middle class” have very different meanings in different parts of the world. Though Maggie and I sometimes struggle at times we are quite wealthy by the standards of the most of the world.
God of Guatemala & Oregon: Remind us that all we have was given to us by you. Remind us that we are called to be good stewards of what you have shared with us. Nudge us, push us, shout at us if necessary in an effort to get us to live more simply so that those in Guatemala and other places in this country and beyond have their share of the world’s wealth. Amen.
posted by Pastor Tim Graves