January 01, 2013

Feliz Año Nuevo: Happy New Year

From Irene, Los Angeles:
"Where does one begin?  My experience here in Peru has been indescribable, lots of stories and sharing amongst each of us here.  Christmas was very simple, but very special with new traditions, like turkey for lunch and presents passed out around the table, and always lots of stories and laughter.  Another day, four of us went to the cemetery to visit Maria Rubina.  It was a special time for each of us there and it just happened that we ended up meeting Maria´s brother and family there."

Irene and Sarah having a little fun.
"On New Year´s Eve, we had prayers.  For me this time was to reflect on my time here thus far and to look back on the year and what I was grateful for.  Each sister shared in her own language and many of us shared how Maria touched our lives in different ways.  Our night ended with a small glass of Peruvian wine and up to the fourth floor to see the fireworks.  What a sight to see!  As the New Year came in, we wished each other a Happy New Year and took lots of pictures.  But, wait, our night was not over yet.  We came back down to the third floor for dessert and lots of laughter once again."

"I am sure New Years Eve will never be the same for any of us here.  It has new meaning and a different way to celebrate.  And, did you know that YELLOW is a very special color?  Everything is yellow for good luck.  So, I am grateful to be here.  Happy New Year to all!"

Maria Elena y Yoli preparing yellow flowers for the tables.
And from Mery, Peru:
"Estoy muy agradecida a nuestro Dios y a la congregación por darnos estos espacios y el tiempo para conocernos un poco más entre todas sobre todo compartir de corazón."

My translations:
"I am very grateful to our God and to the congregation for giving us the space and time to get to know each other a little and, above all, to share our hearts."

"El 31de diciembre por la noche a las 7:00pm agradecíamos a nuestro ABBA (papito) por el año vivido y por las momentos donde experimentamos la presencia de Dios con más intensidad, en ella recordamos y damos gracias por la vida de la Hermana Maria Rubina (coqui) y por todas sus enseñanzas y los dones que ofreció a la comunidad, asimismo por la vida de cada una."

"On December 31st at 7:00 p.m., we gave thanks to our Abba (Daddy) for the year that we lived and for the moments where we experienced the presence of God intensely.  During our prayer we remembered and gave thanks for the life of Sister Maria Rubina (Coqui) and for all of the teachings and gifts she offered to the community and to each one of us."

"En el transcurso de este compartir sentía que todas estuvimos conectadas aunque quizá no todas entendíamos todo,  por el idioma; pero pienso que estuvimos presente escuchándonos, sintiendo el dolor y las alegrías  y deseando que el nuevo año nuestro Dios todo  bondadoso nos siga dando la gracia de caminar en su presencia y que el Espíritu de Dios sea el que hable en cada una para continuar con su misión."

"In the course of our sharing, we felt that we were all connected, though, perhaps, we didn´t understand everything because of the language.  I think that we were present in our listening, feeling the pains and joys, and hoping that, in the new year, God will kindly give us the grace to continue to walk in His presence, and that He will speak in each of us that we might continue His mission."

Deb Timmis, Albany--

Starting my New Year with a trip to Peru I hope has helped me move out of my comfort zone. Like all travel abroad I would suppose for most I am never as aware of being immersed in my home culture as I am when abroad. I think not knowing the language well and needing to depend on others is a learning experience. Something as simple as a pen leaking while filling out the customs form is a cause for depending on others and practicing a language of the heart. This language of the heart is a primal language composed of one syllable words of another language, gestures and the common human experience. I am finding it both useful and effective. I hope to be able to communicate with our sisters here using such a language. So already this trip is a success for me and a wonderful opportunity to connect out of my normal comfort zone.

Sharing hot chocolate, bread, and lots of laughs after ringing in the new year.  From left to right:  Mauricia, Mery Luz, Sonji, Mery, Liz, Yoli, Pina, and Nancy.


  1. How wonderful to listen in my heart to all of your joy and celebration. Great, Great. Marianne

  2. How your sharing brings back memories of the wonderful time we had with our sisters in Peru! It is gift and I'm happy that so many are experiencing it! Blessings on your time. Barbara Anne
    PS love the pictures!