Laying it all Down

I spent my Thanksgiving weekend working with a servant event from Our Father Lutheran Church in Centennial, CO. At devos one night, the Bible passage used was the one about laying down your life for your brother, and I think that's what impresses me most about the group. Twenty-one people, including lots of teenagers, set aside family and tradition to serve their brothers and sisters in El Paso and Juarez. It never ceases to amaze me, but I think I've learned from them that sometimes new traditions are OK.

I was excited this year to see many of the Coloradans I've become friends with after working with OFLC's Thanksgiving AND summer servant events for 3 years now. The whole weekend is just a festive thing to experience, too. Aside from serving 1200 plates of food for San Pablo, San Lucas (food was sent to Cristo Rey with volunteer Jeff), Santisima, and YLM's Saturday volunteers, the group completed a service project on the side--tiling and painting one of the YLM offices. That's where I mostly came in; even given my love for cooking, I just feel like I'm stepping on everyone's toes in the kitchen since they have everything down to such a science. I was also the roaming photographer and wound up serving beans at Santisima!

Who knows? Maybe some or all of the Mackenzies will be taking part in this Thanksgiving tradition again sometime soon!!!

She is stuck to the trowel!

Pastor Heimer giving a blessing before service at San Pablo on Thanksgiving Day.

Serving line at San Pablo.

Hanna on cake duty.

We put salsa on our turkey in El Paso!

Me, Hanna, Chris, Tina, Hammer, and Kevin during potentially my last visit to Scenic Drive.

Most of the OFLC group plus Chris and I at Scenic Drive.

Tile Glue Twister: Left to the bucket. Right that teeny space where there's no glue yet!

LOTS of activity happening at once in the kitchen Friday morning.

Me with Panchis's second grandchild, born on November 21, 2011. His name is Armando, just like his dad (Panchis's son) and grandpa (Panchis's husband). His 1 1/2 yr. old sister is Luna; maybe you remember the story of me driving Panchis's daughter-in-law Pati to the hospital at 3:00 am when she was born!

A CROWD at San Lucas.

Serving line at San Lucas.

This little guy was enthralled by my camera; it was hysterical!

OFLC kids and San Lucas kids on the playground structure outside.

A surprise from the Moes family, who stayed back from Juarez to give the office a first coat of paint.

Santisima was packed as well, and the kids sang for us! I had a moment while they were singing as it occurred to me that it might be my last time witnessing such a contingent belting out Mariachi San Pablo songs!

Serving line at Santisima; I'm in the middle on charro bean duty! I loved serving 2 years ago, but had been trying to let the group members do it until somebody yelled that there was a vacancy.

Chris and I with our adopted goddaughter Julia.

Me with Josue, from Mision San Pedro y San Pablo.

Me with Josue's sister Genesis.

Natalie and Ruby: the story behind this one is that Natalie's brother Nick has taken a picture exactly like this one for the past couple of years. He couldn't be there this year since he's away at college, so she stepped into the pose in his stead.

A beautiful pavo real (royal turkey--> peacock) that a lady named Amelia at Santisima made for the OFLC group. Earlier this year, somebody from their church donated a sewing machine to her so she could continue with her hobby.

The almost put back together YLM office--my desk is left center if you want to see what my home for the next few weeks looks like!

Until next time, blessings!


Carol said…
Huge smile on my face! Nothing I could add to what you have said. I have tears in my eyes again -- have I mentioned just how much I will miss you on our mission trips, and how you are a wonderful traveling roommate? Please do come join us again sometime for a Thanksgiving in El Paso!God bless you, Erin, as you move forward in your 26th year, and keep us posted on your adventures back in St. Louis.