hold on tight!

hold on tight!

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once again, this last week has blow me away. i’m starting to see a trend here.

haha, i don’t know what it is, but sometimes i feel like God takes us on rollercoasters just to see how we will react – or maybe that is just now, here in baguio city for me. haha, but regardless! it’s like, are you going to unleash yourself from the harness and jump out, or are you going to hold on really really tight to the harnesses, and just scream as you approach the big loop and then the steep drop? and then love that adrenaline rush afterwards?

well, apparently, i choose (chose) the latter. i’ve been finding that i have had to just hold on, really tight, and while sometimes it seems like i’m going through the big loop SO SLOWWWW…eventually God takes me outta there, and unravels it all. lucky for me, i don’t get motion sickness too bad on rollercoasters, and lucky for me, i feel like i am in the unraveling part, about to approach another steep uphill..what goes up must come down? well, let’s just stay on the “what goes up” part. that’s a nice place to be right now. it’s all about the climb anyway, right? haha! wow, the metaphor has stretched itself. but i digress…

it being the first week of advent, sr. terezinha and i ventured to our weekly bible studies, with the intention of introducing the advent wreath to them. well, our first stop was with the mothers in balili. what was awesome is that we made our advent wreath out of camote leaves! haha, picked right outside of one of the mother’s home, there we constructed our advent wreath. i remember taking a step back after the mothers started putting together the wreath, and i started thinking to myself, whoa, there’s a lot of people gathered here. not only were there new people, but they brought their children too! here are some pictures:

camote leaves!
advent wreath!
sr. terezinha explaining each of the candles.
happy advent!

filipino style, we were able to celebrate our first week of advent in balili. afterwards, we asked the mothers what they thought about bible study, and wanted to see what feedback they could give us – what did they want more of, what worked for them, what was helpful, what was not helpful…and so they said, they love the bible study…haha! so then i said in my broken tagalog, not even trying to attempt ilokano, is there anything more you would want? and they said…”can you teach us some new songs?” hahaha, and i said, YES! 🙂 and so, there we have it…i’m going to teach each of the groups of parents that we meet with, some new songs! and then hopefully, create a choir with them. how fun would THAT be!

another thing that sr. terezinha and i talked about was that, since there are more kids coming to the bible studies with their parents, sr. terezinha will work with the parents, and i will work with the kids at the same time! it’s perfect! the way SOSCFI works, is that only one child out of every family can attend the saturday activities and be directly involved with the program, and so…i also thought to myself, this is great because the parents are starting to bring their other children to our bible studies, so this is a way for us to reach out to their families as a whole. pretty awesome. i was happy about that! sr. t and i were pretty blown away and very impressed with the mothers at balili. they have come a LONG way! woohoo! i like seeing this stuff bloom.

this past sunday, we made our visit to the irisan community, and found that the roof that we usually meet on, had a tarp cover on it! so we asked, did you guys have an event yesterday? turns out the new priest came to visit their barangay! AWESOME! turns out the priest will be celebrating a mass there on a monthly basis, which means, sr. t and i really need to start training our irisan community here, how to serve during the liturgy! so great! it was pretty exciting. the mothers and children seemed so energized, and it was pretty funny too, to see how the community separated themselves. the parents were all on one side with sr. terezinha, and i was on the other side with all the children! definitely not even planned. haha! we also made our advent wreath, and this time, we made it out of some leaves from some type of plant. 🙂

i sat on the bench with the kids. 🙂

advent wreath in irisan!

sr. terezinha explaining the candles

everyone was so attentive!

complete with flowers, jesus, and our lady of manaoag!

ate jewel and ate lynie were able to join us too, so that was super fun. as sr. t and i were processing irisan, we thought about how awesome it was to be a part of watching these communities grow – not only in numbers, but in confidence, and in truly being active participants in their faith communities. this is something very, very good. 🙂 it is as if my post on the “revolution of the heart” has come into reality within a week. haha, God works pretty fast – the Lord must know how impatient i am, and i think God gave into me this time. haha!

here are some other fun pictures that i took from that day:

the kids really liked looking at the characters on my bag. haha! she did too.

the baby. hahaha looks like he’s wrapped real snug in there.

i liked this kid.

they had fun. 🙂

the rollercoaster just got really exciting.

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