The Adjei Bi-monthly(ish)
In March we had baptisms of 3 people. It was a really sunny, hot day and we all went to the river to spend the morning together, have a worship and teaching time, have the baptisms and finally a barbecue and a swim. The whole morning there was a really great time. Loads of children getting washed away down the river enjoying themselves!!! (We didn’t lose any.)
First to be baptised were a couple who we have known now for a few years. Susana is the daughter of Margarita and sister to Alberto (the one who is blind). She has been coming to church for a long time now and more recently her husband has been joining her. Next to be baptised was Maria Jesus (for those of you who remember Marta, our youngest girl back in our days of living in Casa Alfa, this is her Mum). We have known Maria and her family for about 10 years now- but just recently in the last few months she has begun to really understand the Bible and God’s love.
Just a few weeks ago we changed our meeting place again. We now borrow some offices in town on a Sunday and also have just last week started a Thursday evening meeting. We have been having a really good time with church since changing building- people are more often turning up on time (unusual for Bolivia)! This week we were able to take the children’s group to a cafe a few streets away to buy them a snack and let them play in an amazing play area. Because most of them come from such poor families they had never done anything like this before and had a great time- definitely something we would like to repeat in the future. While we are on the subject of the church children I would like to say how encouraged I have been lately by their participation in the worship times at church. Before we used to just let them go off and do their own thing as it was so hard to get them to stay in one place, but after a few weeks of asking them to stay for a few songs (and a little bit of bribery- or “rewards”!!!) they have started to really enjoy themselves and learn songs and participate. They really are a very well behaved group- usually 15 or more of all ages and they are a pleasure to be with also in the teaching time.
The home continues to go well. We have 4 girls there 3 of who have been with us for quite some time now, Isabel, Monica and Maribel. Isabel left the home for a while which was a sad time for us. She went back to the streets and all that they involve. Just a couple of weeks before, her ex-partner and father of her little boy had committed suicide and it seems that this is probably what had unsettled her and she went through a very confusing time of not really knowing what she felt about it. However a few weeks ago she asked to return to the home and seems relaxed and happy most of the time again. Before leaving she had been trying to get her son back who has spent most of his life in a children’s home (the one where we got our Gaby from). When she left and the returned we did not know what this would do to the whole process of trying to get him back. However somewhere along the line the message never got through to the judge that she had ever run away and so last week she had her hearing to have him given back to her and now he is in El Alfarero living with his mother for the first time in 2 years! It has come as a surprise to us but we are very happy for her that she has been able to get him back now.
Maribel had been with us twice over the last 2 years. The first time for just a week, then last year for 3 months. Last year she had been enjoying her time in the home, but then one morning just disappeared, which was a surprise to us as she had changed so much in her character from a shy, serious person to being bubbly and outgoing a lot of the time. A few weeks ago she turned up back at the home out of the blue, again rather withdrawn, but after a couple of weeks she relaxed and is very smiley again. Maribel is 4 months pregnant, this is her second pregnancy, she lost a baby the year before last just before going into Alfarero for the first time because her boyfriend had beaten her.
Jasmine has graduated!!! Ok she’s maybe not quite as advanced as it sounds, but as her school is run on the US system the children graduate from Kindergarten. She was a very sweet little graduate- also a lovely smiley bunny in her end of year school play. Now she has 3 months holiday until school starts in August again, at which point Gaby will be joining her in school. It’s hard to believe that little Gaby is just 3 months away from school, though she thinks she has been ready since Jasmine first went! I have just explained to Jasmine about the letter I am writing and she wanted to send you all this message “Thank you everybody for praying and what are your names? And thank you for being nice and being kind to us”. Jasmine loves dictating letters, she wrote a really long, sweet one to Gaby for the 3 year anniversary of her coming to our family to be adopted.
OK, while we’re on the subject of adoption we can tell you our biggest and very happy news that we are in the process of another adoption!!! Baby Lily came to live with us just 2 days ago after 2 hearings in the Palace of Justice. She is 2 months old and we have known about her since her birth- so this has been a looooong 2 months for all of us! She is a little sweetie with lots of soft black hair (unfortunately she is nocturnal though!!!!) We are so happy to have her in our family and ask you to pray for us as we go through the next steps of adopting her. This next 2 weeks is a trial period during which time we will have social worker and psychologist visits, then another hearing with the judge.
These 2 days have been tiring but very, very happy. It has also been lovely watching the way the “big” girls are with their sister, very, very much in love and very keen to help with whatever they can. Jasmine in fact offered to do the night feeds- but we declined her offer!
Thank you so much for all your care and support.
With our love
Sarah, David, Jasmine, Gaby & Lily xxxx