Our Fall 2013 Partnership will be in mailboxes soon! Here’s a sneak peek at this issue, which covers our Young Adult Global Encounter, when a group of young Lutherans from across Canada visited some of the people you are supporting in Peru.
Hope for a bright future
Megan Kish attends Trinity Lutheran in Estevan, SK. These are some of her reflections on her participation in the Young Adult Global Encounter.
In May 2013, I was fortunate enough to be chosen to participate in Canadian Lutheran World Relief ’s Young Adult Global Encounter to Peru. It was an invaluable experience.
I learned about the importance of improving the role of women in Peruvian society. CLWR partners with DIACONIA, its Peruvian equivalent, which in turn provides support, tools and skills to farmers in outlying areas of Peru to become self-sufficient through sustainable organic agricultural practices.
We were able to visit the farm of Rosa, a female farmer trained through DIACONIA, who has since become a leader in her community. Rosa was extremely proud of her farm and the fact she did the work of a “man and a woman.” Rosa is a big personality who clearly puts a lot of heart into her work and the pride in the literal “fruits of her labour” was evident when we were encouraged to pick and eat the fruits and vegetables she had grown. She stressed over and over how grateful she was to DIACONIA and CLWR for the support and opportunity she had been given.
I learned about faith and the power of Lutheran worship in another culture—it’s the same in Spanish! And as Pastor Pablo said at the end of a Pentecost worship service at Cristo Rey Church in Lima: “I am so proud to be Lutheran!”
I learned about mission through the voices and experiences of Carmelle Mohr and Pastor Dana Nelson, fellow North Americans residing in Peru. They spoke of the beauty of the Peruvian culture and the warmth they have felt from the people there. They also spoke about social issues that we as a church have a call to address: domestic violence, poverty and devastating environmental practices by North American mining companies.
I saw the beauty of creation in Peru, from the desert to the jungle to the snow-capped peaks of the Andes. I also saw how CLWR is attempting to preserve this creation through its work.
“THE OVERWHELMING MESSAGE WAS ONE OF GRATITUDE”
The overwhelming message sent from the farmers we visited was one of gratitude. CLWR is not “getting in and getting out” of Peru. With their partner organization they are creating sustainable projects that can maintain environmental integrity and support community development.
The farmers and trainers we visited reiterated how their lives had improved thanks to the support of CLWR. In return, this experience has enriched my life and those of the other participants on the Global Encounter. The hope and enthusiasm of the other amazing participants on this adventure are an illustration that our Church and the work of CLWR have a bright future.
The whole issue will be available online by clicking here: http://www.clwr.org/Get-Involved/Partnership.htm