March 2024

Camping, Culture, Carabou and community hampers.

Written by: 
Rose Scott


The guys camping trip, saw about 20 teens and leaders who went to Northwest Panay Peninsula natural park. As well as dips in a few swimming holes, they saw very large spiders and a tree filled with bats hanging from it.
While the guys were out camping Saturday morning, us girls visited a cultural museum on the neighboring island of Panay, where we were greeted with a welcome song sung by a group in traditional dress. The living museum was a fascinating look at how people of the region lived in the old days, before tourism. Coconuts and bamboo have multiple uses – for food, building materials and even washing. We tried weaving, rode carabou, an ox-like animal, otherwise known as water buffalo which were used to plow the rice fields. And no Larry*, everybody does not have a water buffalo. Not even here in the Philippines. 

Sunday morning, Darren led us in devotions, reminding us that we are in a spiritual battle against the dark forces of this world. (Ephesians 1:18-21) We have felt the support of your prayers and know that though the battle goes on, the war is won! Pray especially for the youth of this community, the next generation. While many show promise, others struggle. Teenage pregnancy is common, resulting in impoverished single parent households.
The economic situation is tenuous for people that eke out a living from several different jobs—fishing, driving tourists, leading water activities, restaurants. An average wage of around 480 pesos a day comes to about $12.00 Canadian. Due to geographical and soil salinity, as well competing corporate interests, agriculture is not presently widespread on the island, so food security is an issue. Our team spent Saturday afternoon assembling 160+ hampers for pre-selected families and delivered these on Sunday to various communities who were very thankful to receive this Easter gift.
Where property and housing cannot be obtained, people squat on whatever vacant land is available and put up a shelter often constructed of scraps of wood and tin.
With our house construction project nearly completed, we painted the exterior of the house a cheerful lime green, chosen by the owner. Somehow, we ran out of paint, daylight and walls almost simultaneously. Also miraculously, the ladder we used stayed upright.  At home we have Worksafe. Here, we have angels, working overtime.

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