Sunday, October 16, 2011

End of Quarter 1.

I finished my report cards Thursday.  We are half way through the first semester.  Time has gone by very quickly and very slowly all at the same time.  Quickly because I can't believe that the first quarter is already over and slowly because the weather never changes so I can't mark the passing of time by the temperature getting colder.

Last Sunday there was an event here in Belem called Cirio.  Cirio is a Brazilian Catholic (however it really is idolatry not Catholic) event that takes place on the second Sunday in October.  During Cirio people come to pay tribute to a statue of the Virgin Mary or "Our Lady of Nazareth".  People will carry models of things they want and some even crawl for miles on their hands and knees as a sort of penance so that Mary will grant their request.  At the peak of the festival there is a procession lead by the stand which carries the statue and trailed by a large rope.  People believe that if they can help carry the rope then Mary will give them a special blessing for the following year.  

This week we only had school on Monday and Tuesday because it was the end of the quarter.  It was so nice to have a few days off even though I didn't do a whole lot.  We did get a couple of good game nights in at the Kennedy's house.  And Saturday Andy Kennedy took us up in his plane.  He has a small 4 seater that he built last time they were in the States.  I got a couple of pictures of the school and in one of them you can see my apartment.  

Please continue to pray for visa situations.  There are 7 of us here on tourist visas and 2 still in the States waiting on a work visa.  The lady who was teaching 3rd grade had to go back to the States to finish chemo.  We are waiting on a 3rd grade teacher.  Also we desperately need people to teach ESL, because we have several students who don't speak English well, much less read and write well enough to succeed.