The Georges in Peru

Marie George 1930-2014

22 Oct 2014

Photo from 2013

This morning Allen's Mom joined the great throng in heaven singing

          "Blessing and honor and glory and dominion to

          the One seated on the throne, and to the Lamb,

                       forever and ever!" Revelation 5:13

She died in the Crete, Nebraska nursing home after deteriorating over the last few months.  She will be remembered for her great hospitality and friendliness to everyone.

The funeral schedule is as follows:

Sunday, October 26th

5:00 - 8:00 pm Visitation at the Laurel United Methodist Church - 302 Elm Street

Monday, October 27th

10:00 am Interment at the Laurel Cemetery

11:00 am memorial service at the Laurel United Methodist Church

Visitors from Nebraska!

17 Oct 2014

We love getting visitors, especially from Nebraska!  This week, 12 Nebraskans came to Peru to help with a medical clinic.  Most were optometrists, many of whom visited us in 2006 in Abancay.  This time, we partnered with MMI (Medical Ministries International) and went to Puno to see patients.   Nearly 1000 patients were given glasses or had teeth pulled or cavities filled!

Dr. Kim Baxter from North Platte, NE seeing a patient with the waiting room in the background.

Thanks for coming!

Really! These are happy kids!

05 Oct 2014

Sarah thought that it would be a nice reward for her Sunday school class for learning their memory verses to go to the zoo!  I thought eight would show up.  Instead, we had 16 kids and 10 adults go with us to the zoo yesterday!  They had a great time, though this picture might make you think they were miserable. In Peru, one doesn't smile for pictures.  It's just not what you do.  I was even scolded once, while getting my picture for my driver's license, to not smile! 

Luckily, boys are less obedient to social norms and they smiled for their picture!

It was a great time for building unity in the church beyond Sunday church services.

Pray for the end of the Ebola Epidemic

27 Sep 2014

SIM has dedicated next week (Sept 29-Oct 5) as a time to pray specifically for the end of the Ebola Epidemic in West Africa.  Could you please pray at least one day for this next week?  Pray for a new vaccine or that the virus would 'burn out'.  Pray that the Gospel would advance in these countries despite the horrible losses of life.  Pray that the people affected would not blame those in the hospitals or governments for the virus.  You get the idea.  'Oremos para que cese el ébola' Pray for the end of Ebola.

A Church with a Floor

16 Sep 2014

It has now been two weeks since we finished the floor of the church.  It is wonderful!  Some comments:

  1. "The church looks bigger now!"
  2. "I don't have to clean off my shoes after going to church!"
  3. "There aren't enough seats now.  There are too many people."  (Lame excuse by one man when the pastor asked him why he hasn't come to church lately.  There is room (see picture))

Next on the list is to build a wall on the left-hand side of the church and to divide the children's room into two separate rooms because so many kids have been coming.  Sarah has been teaching the SS class and she is a kid magnet. She had 17 kids the last time she taught!

Our Church is Afloorable

24 Aug 2014

When we first started attending our church about 2 years ago, it didn't have steps to enter down into the property, you had to climb down a pile of rocks.  Following the good marketing principle of 'don't make it hard for people to enter your establishment', one of the first things we did was encourage them to build steps.  We thought a roof would be kind of swell, so with the help of a short-term construction team from CCC in Omaha, we put a roof over the church (took one morning of skilled labor to finish the job!) in July of 2013.  Now the church has finally saved up enough offering money to put in a floor!  In Peru, one doesn't hire someone to pour a floor when you can have a church work day (or several), so we've been working hard this week, getting all of the material into the church.  This means manually scooping/carrying/throwing six truckloads of sand, gravel and rocks into the church (ahem) atrium in preparation for pouring the floor in the next 2 weeks.  It's been a good time of getting the members of the church to work together, and we don't even need to bribe our kids with icecream to get them there,  it's such a satisfying job.

Here you can see us scooping gravel from the main road down to the sidewalk in front of our church.

Praise God that we will soon have a floor (and hopefully a more inviting place for new people to visit)!

Eye clinic

07 Aug 2014

From July 21st through August 1 we helped out with an eye campaign here in Arequipa.  I triaged patients while Sarah, Mia and Paul translated for the volunteers from Canada and the USA and Amy fit people with new glasses.  Sarah even got to spend time in the operating room with the ophthalmologists as they removed cataracts.  They need translators, since the patients are awake when they have cataracts removed!  She thought it was really cool, especially when they numb up the eyeball by putting a big needle behind the eye!  We're thankful that our kids were on vacation and could help with this event.  They made friends with the kids of an ophthalmologist couple that were here and continue conversing via Facebook.  I think all parents think their children's childhood is very different from their own, but at times I think my kids' experiences and my own couldn't be more different!

Trip to Argentina

24 Jul 2014

Since after nearly 15 years of living in South America, we've never really left Peru, we decided we should take a family vacation before Sarah starts college next year.  So we went to Argentina to the Iguazú Falls.  Here is the requisite picture of the family in front of the falls:

Here is a far more interesting picture of Ben being surrounded by coatis that live at the falls and mooch food from the tourists:

What's in a Name?

04 Jul 2014

I always make it a point to learn the names of people with whom I am in contact:  Rosa, the milk lady.  José, the watchman at the gate.  David, the guy who charges me $1.25 to swim at the pool.  I then try to use their name the next time I see them and I am almost invariably greeted with a big smile.  I've used this as a life lesson with our kids, saying, "Treat everyone as a person.  He is 'José', not the security guard."  A good lesson for all, or so I thought, until about a month ago, we had a Peruvian pastor speak to our missionary team about cultural mistakes we make.  He pointed out that missionaries often greet Peruvians by their first names, which implies a close relationship.  When one doesn't exist, it strikes the Peruvian as too intimate and makes them feel awkward.  Could that be true?  After 14 years in Peru I've been repeating this cultural error, and not only that, but with an air of moral superiority?  Too intimate?  In a culture where you kiss strangers when greeting and one packs into city buses smashed together, bodies pressing against unfamiliar bodies?  

Amy has an adult English class where they use the Bible to teach English and discuss spiritual things.  She decided to ask her students if they agreed with what the pastor had said.  Yes.  So now we have yet another cultural hurdle to clear:  We have to figure out when to use one's first name and when to refer to them as simply, 'Señor' or 'Hermana'.

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