Saturday, March 20, 2010

An update

Boring title, no?
Anyway, Neil's trip went really well, although not without difficulty. The van broke down twice on the first day. What made it worse, is that the cities where they were headed had an early curfew. They arrived at the first city after curfew. Neil spoke to the policeman, and explained the situation. He was sympathetic and gave them safe passage. It helped that the church van has the church name written in large letters on it.
They went to Talca, where the church building had crumbled. Then on to Constitucion, where part of the pastor'sm house had fallen down the hill. They went back to Talca for a few days to help remove tons of rubble. Neil was on the rood when a 7.2 earthquake hit. It was rather unsettling, to say the least. The folk up there are quite jittery, understandably.
On the last day they headed to Hualpen, near Concepcion, another of the hardest-hit areas. It was incredibly hard to drive around town. Last stop was Santa Juana, where a new missionary and his wife live. The wife was home alone during the quake because her husband was a our church. Their family in Mexico was afraid that they had died. Thank God, none of us or any of our friends died.
Neil was so exhausted. He said, "we are going on a vacation!" So, here we are, in Argentina, for a few days of R and R. Well, its about as much R and R that you can get taking care of a toddler in a two story cabin. Vanessa has been fascinated by the stairs. We have been frustrated trying to keep her off them!

Our church has had an attendance explosion since the earthquake. In the last three Sundays, we've had 164, a record,,170 the next week, another record, and last week 182, another record.
Its nice to finally be in a reaping season than a sowing season.

Here in Argentina, Ronnie celebrated his 11th birthday. We took him ice-skating. They love that. Vanessa just squealed with delight to see her siblings skating. I can't figure out why she found that so exciting!

Its been an interesting month. To say the least.


Tori said...

I'm so glad God is using this terrible happening for God. That's what it takes sometimes, a terrible happening before people are moved.

Happy birthday to Ronnie!!

We're going to get Bro. Smith in Hungary on Monday, I'm sure he has lots of stories to tell us from Chile.

Rhonda in Chile said...

Oh, I am so glad Bro.Smith got to go! He was concerned about Mrs. Smith, I am sure he'll tell you all about that.

Yes, he'll tell you about how he left Chile "all shook up".