I'm at the annual Word of Life North missions conference. There are representatives from many agencies that work with "river peoples" or "ribeirinhos." Word of Life's idea is inter-linked projects. Their camps "make" workers>their seminary trains>churches (river ministries) creates new campers>re-start the circle.
Tonight at the services there was a girl drummer who straddled a cajón box drum on stage, not very "lady-like." Tho it wouldn't be much better if a guy did it. It rained and I kept wanting to run out and look like a "nordestino" or north easterner who love to play in the rain since they hardly ever see any.
The info about all the needs and works kinda sends me on an emotional roller-coaster. Sometimes I want to go all places, sometimes I want to crawl in a hole as I feel inadequate or overwhelmed, and sometimes I feel I've wasted away my life playing missionary while there's so much to do. It's easier to see it in others, first, but it's so easy to be career just doing your job and working the church when there's so much need - not "out there" but right here. I had to go all the way there to see what was right near by me all along at home.
|photos - PV Norte/fb|
Not much new today about the conference except more info and new contacts. The step-mother of the missionary I came to see, Gary, and was to travel with this next week is bad off. She has infection in her only lung. Doctors decided to induce a coma and ventilate, but may always need to vent. Gary's brother, Rick (who works in Itacoatiara) has some problems with his new boat. It may not be ready so he may skip the floating seminary trip as the river will soon be too low to pass rocks. That was my next destination. So now what?
It's still too soon to try to define my thoughts yet about the conference. They're more like popcorn or an old wooden roller-coaster. Up, down, spin, jerk. Thrill - but that gets you nowhere and leaves you w/o direction (dizzy). I'll be glad when the decision process is over and I know where I'm going. Like the school decision w/ Dalton. Once it was done there was relief and peace.
Gary's running around today for the step-ma situation. Didn't want to stay in the house w/ just the wife so…here I sit in the student center. Haven't found wi-fi anywhere. Gary, Dad, and a Brazilian guy watched Green Bay Packers game late at night after the conference meetings (random memory).
Greyson's "friend" from music week, Gabriela and some relatives came to see me and attend the service on the last night of the conference. They all live nearby in Belém. It was a good visit, but I had to rush off at the end to get ready for the next leg of my trip.
SO,…I can go to Manaus and Itacoatiara and help Rick @ SEARA w/ new boat, go on the floating Seminary trip, if they make it OR visit a town called Manicoré. I have looked at ministry between Manicoré and Novo Aripuanã. Manicoré a has road to Manaus and Novo Aripuanã has a road to Apui and rest of Brazil. All have churches in their cities but their neighboring river communities are reported to not. Gary joked and I offered to teach for him on the floating seminary trip, but I don't know what I have to offer as a stranger.
Plane leaves in the middle of the night for Manaus. From there we'll see...