I’ve been somewhat startled to discover that some people here take me for an evangelist. It makes sense, really: here in Carepa they’re having a revival campaign from Thursday to Sunday. There’s a lot of talk about evangelism and winning souls for Christ. Tonight and Wednesday I’m supposed to give brief reflections at the prayer meetings, and tomorrow a Bible study. I think I’ll use the book of Ruth, since I have a fairly solid base of knowledge there.
The water situation is very different here from anything I had personally experienced before. Since you never know when the running water will be shut off, houses tend to have a basin full of water to use for washing and some stores of water for bathing and for consumption. In many homes, you will bathe from water in a bucket. Public education posters are displayed in many places, informing that basins should be emptied and cleaned every week to prevent the spread of mosquitos. Mosquitos are more of a problem in some houses/neighborhoods than others.
This morning I went with the pastor and his wife to visit some parishioners. At the very edge of town are a number of little campo-style ranchitos and many displaced people live there. Some months ago one woman set fire to her house through a kitchen mishap, and several other houses went down with it. Now the families are being told not to rebuild there, but to wait for the mayor to assign them a new place—because the city plans to build a street right where the houses were. One woman, a single mother with three special needs children, lost her only means of income in the fire: her bicycle and machine for making empanadas and arepas to sell.