This month was very exciting... We participated for the first time in the metropolitan witnessing... We had a great run from 11am to 2pm in a park called Paradise!!!. A lot of literature was taken from the stand and we had a couple ask for a study. It was very nice to see many surprised brothers and sisters visiting the park come up and say hello, wondering how long we'd been doing this in the park... They were happy to learn it was the first day :)
Another thing we did was go on our first rural trip to unassigned territory... Let me tell you it made me think twice about ever returning to Australia... Wow we had an amazing time.
The assignment was for a full week (not long enough) to the country side of Ecuador. We initially thought this would be jungle area but we were very surprised to find it was actually in the Sierra high up in the mountains. The scenery through this whole trip was beautiful as you may have seen from our Instagram photos.
We went without having accommodation, knowing there were no congregations very close, no petrol stations and that we'd have no phone reception in those areas... so we were a little anxious...
After 5 hours driving we reached the small town Guanazan. Everyone stared at us (Jeremy in particular) wondering who we were and what we wanted. When we asked if there was any hostels in the area they pointed to one next to the church. It wasn't opened but we believe it was a convent...hehe so we kept looking without much success...so panic started to creep in and we started wondering if the car was our best option for accommodation... We decided to pray specifically for accommodation that was safe and some what comfortable, then we decided to go to the next town which was larger, almost an hour away through the worst roads in Ecuador, although only 10kms if you could drive in a straight line!
|If you look closely you'll see our car|
Once we arrived we asked the locals if they had phone reception and they mentioned the only reception they get was under this particular tree in the town center park... We looked for a restaurant to eat nearby and Jeremy went to try and make a phone call, while we waited to see if there was somewhere for us to stay. As Jeremy was about to come back he got a call from a brother who heard of our situation and knew a witness couple lived in the town where we were, the only witnesses for the region, hours from the closest congregation... We got some directions to where they lived and happily they offered us accommodation without us even asking for the whole time we were there... Our prayers were truly answered.... a nice, safe and very comfortable place to stay compared to everything else - it was the prettiest house in the town of course! The brother is building a small Kingdom Hall next to his house anticipating the growth to come....
The people who lived where we preached were very respectful of the bible, and very friendly... Many asked why we had taken so long to return... I believe the territory had been done a long time ago by another congregation.
One family invited us for lunch in their little mud house. It was so cute! They served us this amazing soup cooked over wood fire. So in the middle of all their guinea pigs we sat down for a meal...very hospitable people.
We all had great witnessing experiences, Jeremy was able to start a study with a gentleman he was able to find three times before we left, the study will be done over the phone. We were also able to preach at several schools... We weren't sure how the teachers would react but they were so receptive, and so happy with the children's books we provided them. One school even allowed us to have a lesson with the children. We soon realised we didn't bring enough literature with us, especially for kids.
In all, our group was formed of 17 people who came and left at different times of the week. We had one group come early in the week, one family had a little one year old girl with them. She was so good and coped with all the dust and walking her parents did, pioneer in the making!! Her parents are truly admirable, to make such an effort with a little one, they all coped really well.
We had another family with two little ones, a little four year old girl and a seven year old boy. They just loved it! They were chasing the sheep, the horses... anything really! They had such a good time.. It's so nice to see the effort parents are making to include their children in spiritual activities from such a young age.
My family also joined us , they were meant to come the whole week but they hadn't received their car back from the mechanics since the accident so they only made it out on the last day...still they had a great time...
We managed to arrange a restaurant to cook all our meals from breakie to a take away lunch in the morning and dinner ready for when we came back. We paid $5.50 per day per person... The food was great. At about 1pm or so everyday we stopped by he side of the road, pulled out our picnic blanket (we had it made - we bought a blanket and a plastic cover and paid one of my studies who sows to put it together) and had a lovely semi-warm lunch. After we ate we copied the mexicans for a 15 minute siesta to help us recuperate...
We had no hot water throughout out the week so we heated up water on the stove and showered from the pot. We also took our sleeping bags and slept very warmly. The brothers had a working horse and they were happy for us to take photos with it and ride it around for a little bit. He was a very friendly and well behaved horse, I really wanted to take him home with us. Hehe
|Wilfred y Zoila|
Funny story: Jeremy had to put petrol in the car but there's no station nearby. So the locals told us about a lady who sells fuel but we had to put it in ourselves. The first time Jeremy had a big bucket on top of the spare tyre at the back and with a hose the lady gave us he sucked the fuel from the bucket hoping to put it into our car... What he didn't realise was that straight after he had sucked the tube the first time the petrol had traveled down enough already and as he went to suck again it came thru! So as you can imagine Jeremy got it all over his face up his nose and his clothes.... The good thing was he didn't swallow any! But we did have to go back home for him to change. Poor hubby! Pretty funny though.... by the second time he was fine.
|The last time we only bought two galons, the lady run out of fuel...|
Just before we left we get to these pools next to a river... they were amazing... so pretty... couldn't help but take lots of photos...
So that was a very summarized recount of our rural trip..
Next month my family is moving congregations so they'll eventually be living closer to us since the Cong they've been reassigned to is right next door to our territory. Other major news.... we're coming back to Sydney for a month... we need to go for work.. we'll be arriving the 25th Nov and leaving 9th Jan... SO EXCITED!!!.... and yet sad to be leaving our ministry and loving Cong.... oh no it's just made me realize how hard it's going to be when eventually we go home!....hmm.....
Ok, it's been nice to catch up with a few through instagram and facebook...we miss you all very much...xox
Amazing right.... honestly who would want to leave :(