July 01, 2008

No Comprendo

It is definitely fun to be at a point in our journey where we can use our lack of language for a little fun and teasing. Señora Maria cooks the noon meal for us here at the Center House (always muy rico!), but she never lets us help with dishes. Today when Anne asked (like we do every day) and Maria said no, Anne just said, "Lo siento. No comprendo." ("I´m sorry. I don´t understand.") and we started doing the dishes. It is a very fun, very spirited house.

While Anne and Andrea were off in Huanaco this past weekend, I spent the time here in Lima. I accompanied Maritza (twenty-six years old, in temporary profession) to one of her classes and to her ministry. It was a liturature class, for which there was a reading, of which Maritza gave me a copy, and which I did read. It was suggested that for the other book I am reading in Spanish (el Leon, la Bruja, y el Ropero--The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe) that I not read word for word and translate, but that I just read the passage and let the story come out of it. Amazingly, I did get a lot of it. Anger, sadness, emotions, and the general plotline were fairly obvious. When we got to class, the professor and the students all spoke way too quickly for me to understand much of anything, but it was fun nonetheless.

Saturday afternoon Maritza and I went off to ministry. We met first at Hna. Clara´s house, a Sister of St. Joseph from Argentina who has been here in Peru for many years after needing to flee Argentina for political reasons (if I understood Maritza correctly). We went with Hna. Clara to a new invasion in a different part of Lima. Lima is a huge city that continues to get larger. Peruvians are constantly moving to the city. People who speak don´t speak Spanish, but Quechua or Aymara, but come hoping for work or education. They end up moving into the hills where there are not yet roads nor water. The polution here is growing exponentially. Maritza and I helped to carry a computer to one of these new invasions. This little pueblo is just now getting computer access and Señor Carlos has six or seven computers set up in his home to help teach adults and children alike computer skills as well as reading and writing. Maritza is planning to help while she is out of school in Aug. After delivering the computer we went to a small classroom set up for children where, once a week, Maritza teaches some Spanish writing and computer skills, dialogues about social and family issues, and incorporates prayer with adults for an hour. Some of the conversation and writing was right on my level, so it was great. Maritza is really amazing. To see the ease with which she works with the people, the respect that they have for her, and her comfort level in every situation in which I have seen her is phenomenal. A person I am very glad to call my sister and my peer.

Tomorrow, off to Tacna. I hear we will have computer access there, but one never knows. More later. Hasta luego.



  1. Sarah--I think Senora Maria is the same Senora Maria who is married to Senor Roberto from San Hilarion. Could you check this out and please give her mis saludos. I hope she remembers "Hermana Cathy" (pronounced Cati) from many years ago. She might not remember but I remember her and her husband and I think they had 2 or 3 children. Hope so! I absolutely love reading your blogging! Kathy Crowley

  2. Dear Sarah, I am so happy you are having this glorious experience of the congregation and that you are meeting your peers in the South. I can't even imagine what it's been like for you, but what a blessing for you and for all of us that you and Andrea have had this opportunity. I know you are grateful. Love reading about your time away. Rita

  3. In a way it seems strange that you are there and I am here?!?! However, it makes me rejoice to see and hear that things are only getting better for all of you.

    Of course I smiled picturing you and Anne and the "dish deal"--I can see Maria smile, too. And then Luz pulling the same thing on Anne. You know ONE of my sayings: what goes around comes around, yes?

    Love to you, Sarah; to Anne and Andrea, too, as you experience yet another group of our great Sisters in another interesting space and place: Tacnac.

    People here continue to ask about you. I tell them what I know and then I suggest they read your Blog.

    Love to you, Sarah Jane.

    Mary Patricia

    PS: I am now officially appointed your Novice Director from now until August 2nd. Am I lucky and blessed or what?