Semana Santa: Palm Sunday - Resurrection Sunday!
I had a VERY full Easter weekend. It all started on Friday night, when I went to church to hear David preach. Almost 3 hours later, we left! Yes, that's right. I sat through a 3 hour church service in Spanish. Don't worry...David didn't preach that entire time! :-) After the service was over, we were all served empanadas
and coffee. However, my night did not end there! David's uncles, aunts, and cousins were all at an uncle's house making humitas
. Of course, when we got there, the fun was just beginning. I've come to the conclusion that any family event here doesn't really start until after 10:00pm, no matter what time they tell you to be there! David was cracking everyone up at his uncle's house. It was one of those moments where I thought, "I really wish I knew why this was so funny!" It's one thing to understand the words, it's a completely different thing to understand the humor behind the words. David says the same about my English. Apparently whenever I'm with "gringos" I make everyone laugh and he doesn't understand why it is so funny. Well, at least our friends think we're funny! :-)
Saturday I was able to spend time with my good friend Daniela and our other friend Bradley. We went to a bird "zoo" in Puyo and saw some pretty awesome birds from all around the world. Later, David had a soccer game, but ended up not being able to play because he had the wrong kind of shoes. (How that makes any kind of difference on an outdoor soccer field, I have no idea. Looks like he'll need to buy new ones!)
Sunday we had an Easter church service at 5:00am. Yep, that's right. 5:00 in the morning! I can't remember that last time I was up that early. And of course this one couldn't be shorter than the Good Friday service. It was another 3 hour service! However, we were rewarded again with chicken salad sandwiches afterward! :-)
After our little snack, we all headed to the river for some baptisms. My friend, Daniela, got baptized! She was so excited about getting baptized on Easter Sunday and was even more excited to be able to share that day with family and friends. There were also six other people getting baptized that morning. It was amazing to be out in God's creation, sharing in the obedience of his young children!
After the baptism I had some friends over for breakfast to celebrate Daniela's decision. It was really fun to celebrate with many of the youth from the church, with whom David had worked as a youth pastor for several years. We had a great time enjoying some yummy food and just talking. Of course, it didn't last too long since everyone had been up since before 5:00am.
After a nice long Sunday afternoon nap (gotta love those!) our church had yet another activity that evening. They marched around Shell for about 30 minutes with lanterns and banners. They called it "March for Christ's Victory" and had banners with phrases like, "Vote For Christ". (Elections are later this month so there are political banners EVERYWHERE!) The march ended up at an outdoor basketball court where we watched a film about Jesus' life told by Mary Magdalene. A LOT of people walking by stopped in to watch the film and sing some praise songs. It was a great weekend, remembering Christ's death and celebrating His resurrection!