Sr. Liza: A Letter Home March, 2017
I thought in this letter I would add anything new or in development right now in our lives.
You might have wondered what we were doing chasing chickens on a Tuesday morning, which you saw on our Facebook page. Well, we Sisters have a few chickens! We built a small coop up on our rooftop. However, chickens will be chickens. We traded two of our roosters that were donated to us for two hens to add to the two we already had. But two new hens, did not like the deal at all. The black hen you see in the photo is the ring
leader and an escape artist. She escaped this past Tuesday and took the brown chicken with her! I caught her the other day trying to do another quick escape. As soon as she saw me, she acted like nothing was happening. She is a smart little gal, so we had to reinforce the fence. As long as they are busy I suppose, there won’t be much time for making a run for it!
They all do good work in laying eggs every day. We have quite a few now. I’m sure they will be quite tasty.
Today, second Sunday of Lent, our neighbors came out to fix our stone road which had a few potholes. We also have our season for road construction! I went down to say hello and thank them for their work. They gave me permission to take some pictures of them working.
So here are our guys, patching up our potholes by hand. The guy on the right is Fabian, whom I have written about before. It really did not matter to them if it was Sunday, the work had to be done and they had time to do it. All these guys have farms of their own or rent a bit of land to grow food and raise a few animals for their families. If they are lucky, they might have enough to sell either vegetables or livestock at the weekly farmers market.
Regardless of their family responsibilities, here they are on a cloudy Sunday afternoon, hauling, breaking and fitting stones so that the road is passable for everyone. No engineering degree required, just good will.
On the ministry front, we Sisters have some ideas to add another pastoral service for women in the parish. We are not quite there yet. But we will keep on thinking and planning. Hopefully we might be able to start something in another two months or so.
Sr. Yenfa has been working with Father Santi Perex, SDS on weekends at the Formation Center teaching classes to first and second level preachers, catechists, and pastoral service people in San Marcos. She also works with the vocation groups around the diocese alongside Father Rodolfo Cabello, SDS. Srs. Yenfa and Jovelina also do short vocational programs once a month at the Catholic Radio Station at the Diocese of San Marcos.
Sr. Vera has been working at the Birth-to-Five program twice a week at the Diocese in San Marcos (for children with malnutrition issues and the mothers). She is also quite good in leading retreats. Sr. Vera will also be helping out at the Catholic TV program doing some sections on our environment. She has also challenged herself to take classes to learn Mam, one of the many Mayan languages in our area.
Sr. Jovelina has been working with the youth in the parish and in vocation work at the parish and diocesan level also with Fr. Rodolfo. She collaborates with Sr. Yenfa in vocation work for our community when we have a woman interested in the SDS Congregation. Jovelina will also help us put together the pastoral support for women in the area.
I do some light counseling on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Fridays I interview youth at the IGER, which is the high school diploma program, and I participate with the Alcoholics Anonymous group in San Sebastian. Saturday afternoons I teach three groups at the IGER on human development. Once or twice a month I go to the Catholic TV Program and give a talk on Alcoholics Anonymous or parenting.
I have been seeing the need for a food pantry. Need to bring it to the table and see if it is feasible. There is so much need to supplement basic foods for families in the area. We would have to see how to start it, how to keep it going and where to run it.
It finally rained! We have been dry since October. The farmers are happy as they can now turn off their sprinklers. I had to sweep water off our rooftop this morning. It has rained in the evenings for two days now. I understand it gets pretty wet around here, rains every day and if not, it drizzles most other days. We Sisters usually go up to the rooftop to warm up from the chill of the day. This will probably not be possible now until October. Our chickens will also be a bit damp as the rainy season sets in.
We continue our journey focusing on Lent and encouraging neighbors to visit and pray with one another during this important season.
So long until next month. Keep us in your prayers. Many blessings to each of you during this Lent.
Sr. Liza Segleau