This past week, the second of our parish-wide mission, we were in Wayrapata and Warachani. These two communities are near the Peruvian border and >4500 meters. The mission consists of a day of formation on family life and the celebration of the Liturgy. We divide into groups for the talks/discussions: men, women, children — this facilitates open discussion about things problematic. In the groups we “discovered” another need: the women want to learn to read Aymara so they can teach their children. We’re working on it. The center of the day is Eucharist and a common meal called an “aptapi.”
The mission has been well received, and the folks incrediby welcoming. I’ll do a picture gallery sooner or later. In Wayrapata, we stayed in an unheated schoolroom overnight. I was warm in my sleeping bag with some blankets provide by the folks, the but the morning was brutal. I’m happy about how well my body has adapted to the cold and the altitude. I can walk uphill briskly at 4500 meters (with light backpack) — heart rate and respiration rates go up, but my recovery time is less than a minute. Knees are great.
All-in-all, we are happy with the participation we are seeing in the communities we have visited thus far. Next week, three communities on the Altiplano (~4000 meters): Paco, Santawara, and Ilave. Here’s a few seconds of me (anything longer is impossible to upload!)…and don’t forget to DONATE 🙂