I’ll bet you thought I had disappeared! We’ve been busy! Thanks to your help, the chapel/formation center is up and running (and running Flora ragged!) She works tirelessly, moving between the the locations of Mocomoco and Ingas, supervising the work that now includes catechism, school support, virtual library with computers, a lunch program, the child care center (in Mocomoco only), and distribution of food supplements to the most needy. We hope in the next year to open a similar project in the center in Wilalcala, and are developing a small outreach program to the youth in the sector surrounding Ilave (between the Altiplano sector and the Valley sector).
Last month, we celebrated baptisms, confirmations, and first communions in both Mocomoco and Ingas. We were honored with the presence of our bishop, Mons. Eugenio Scarpellini, who spent the weekend with us enjoying the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul. He’s a dedicated pastoral servant, spending a great deal of time visiting the communities that are far from the city of El Alto where he resides.
New on the horizon is the restoration of the church in Mocomoco. We’re getting the scaffolding ready! The folks who hail from Mocomoco but now live in La Paz hosted a fundraiser to restore the outside of the church (cooking and selling food) and raised $3,513.12! Last year, we changed all the electric in the child care center. This past march we refitted the kitchen in the catechist center. It’s not an ambitious budget from the US standpoint, but for us it’s a mountain! The budget for a two year project (outside 2014, inside 2015) is just under $10,000. Conservatively estimating next year’s fundraiser, that leaves us $4,000 from our fundraising needs for the whole project. $3,350 of that is a “this year” need. I’m mounting a “Kickstarter campaign, at the suggestion of my old friend Bob Jaeger of Partners for Sacred Places where I served as Chairman of the Board. Watch my twitter feed at the right sidebar (or on Twitter @fatherratgmail) for news about this campaign when it’s up and running!
In these photos, you can see the adobe damage, and the state of the gutters and leaders. The roof is good, but needs painting (it’s galvanized metal). The adobe can be patched and then whitewashed in the traditional manner. We have a plan in place to continue to whitewash every year to sustain the covering, and a ten year plan for one-coat roof paintings.
The interior was repainted badly (and all white — it looks nice in the pictures, but really isn’t), so we’d like to repaint with “warmer” colors.
Do you think you could interest any of our friends/partners/associates in donating to the cause? People can donate online at http://www.vocesvicentinas.org/donate.
HAPPY UPDATE: Jhony Ari Pampa, who was living with us since January, passed his entrance exam for a special institute for automotive engineering. Congratulations Jhony!
UNHAPPY UPDATE: The knee is a struggle. We’re trying autologous platelet injections to stimulate growth of what little cartilage is left. The goal is to postpone surgery for as long as we can. It hurts every day. I know, stop whining…. Blessings to all, and thanks for the many birthday wishes! And happy birthday to Veronica Galante Nolan (today) and Timothy Vincent Lyons (July 31)!