This evening we got internet!
Woodland Acres Day 2
Sunday, 21 July 2013
This morning the team joined the congregation at La Comunidad Bible Church, a bilingual gathering of intentional evangelists here in Panama City. We ate lunch after the service then hopped on the bus for a half-hour ride to a community outside the city. Between lush hills and past outlying businesses, the bus bounced along toward a horizon looming dark with clouds.
In the town named San Miguelito is a poor community (“pueblo”or “village”) of indigenous people known as Embera Puru, a source of pride for its members. The kind pastor of the area greeted us on the road just outside the walls of the community and led us inside to a covered pavilion to use as our first drama site. With the help of local children, the team split into groups to walk the streets inviting people to come see the drama. Today is “Children’s Day,” a national holiday in Panama, so the drama was perfect entertainment for young families. Rows of kids sat Indian style at the front of the pavilion, whispering to one another and looking up at the team with big eyes and smiles, a line of adults behind them. After the drama, the team broke into their ministry teams to speak with those in the audience.
The pastor then led us away from the pavilion and down the street to the church—and the whole audience followed us! Behind the church on a small dirt soccer field, the team danced with the children before the drama. They performed once again to a bigger crowd, with a couple of the children joining the People of the Land. As rain began to trickle, the pastor invited everyone into the church. The sky burst forth, and the rain pinged off the tin roof with anger. Inside the four concrete walls, a few members of the team gave their testimonies to the congregation. The pastor thanked God for and prayed over the team. Then we heard the pastor’s struggle: his home has been taken, and for three days he has been homeless. We laid hands on him and prayed for God to restore his home and family. Despite all the trouble the pastor has faced, though, he devotes each moment to glorifying God. He knows the joy of the Lord, and it was inspiring to see it on his face.
Tomorrow the team will head to the beautiful village of Gamboa, an Embera village in the jungle. Please pray for the team’s confidence in sharing the Gospel, as well as divine appointments.