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Saying Goodbye

Since our departure from the US August 4, 2013, we’ve enjoyed many new experiences, had a host of challenges, endured frustrations, missed our friends and family, and made many new friends.  It seems nearly impossible that our time here has come and gone!  The past few weeks are filled with “last times.”  I find myself thinking things like, “is this the last time I take in the view on Capitan Rumi, the last time I try to find strawberries at the market, the last bike ride through the mountains, last group Bible study, the last time I see these co-workers and patients?”

However, there are also a few things I won’t miss too much, like lugging water from the hospital because we don’t have water at the house, school meetings that last forever (if you think meetings in the US last a long time, try Peru), struggling with the language, and bugs, spiders, and parasites.  But overall, Peru has been good to us.  Working with those at the hospital, from more than 15 countries from around the world, has been insightful.  Working with Christians from different denominations has challenged some of our beliefs, but ultimately strengthened them.  The kids have been through tough times at school, both with their school work and being one of the few “gringos.”  But overall they have done extremely well and we all have grown a bit closer as a family.

We would also like to express our sincere thanks for the support from each of you!  From cards and letters, to prayers, to financial support, packages, visits, and even buying clothes for our kids when we get back.  You don’t know what a blessing you have been and our faith has increased as a result of this whole experience.  Financially it looks like we will finish our term here with the exact amount needed to cover our last months budget. Praise the Lord and thanks once again!

In John 16:33 it says, “I have told you these things so that you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart! I have overcome the world.”  In whatever part of the world we live in, there will be troubles.  It may be struggles with basic needs (more common in third-world countries) or it may be relationships, finances, or sickness.  But we can be encouraged!  Our God is bigger than any of those and if we walk with Him, He is able to give us peace and guidance.

Everyone tells us that returning home after time in the mission field is always harder than leaving.  Things change, priorities change, and you’ve been separated from the “important” happenings at home for years.  Please pray that our transition is smooth and that we continue to rely on God for peace and guidance.

May God bless each of you and I hope you have been blessed by being a part of this ministry.

Nolan, Konika, Benjamin, and Sydney

Benjamin with classmates: Alajandro, Yefferson, Favian

Benjamin with classmates: Alajandro, Yefferson, Favian

Sydney with classmates: Mariela, Annie, and Maria Pilar

Sydney with classmates: Mariela, Annie, and Maria Pilar

Konika's last womens group

Konika’s last womens group

Last church group at the house.

Last church group at the house.

Hiking up Capitan Rumi for the last time.

Hiking up Capitan Rumi for the last time.

Sydney with Doris from the hospital

Sydney with Doris from the hospital

Last time to play bass for the devotional

Last time to play bass for the devotional

 

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Merry Christmas!

This past year has been filled with many challenges, opportunities, and blessings.  Completing our first year in Peru has been an experience we will never forget and God has made himself known in many ways this past year.  We want to thank all our friends and family for their support through prayers, donations, letters, and packages.  They are so encouraging to us!

May you all have a very Merry Christmas and God’s blessings this upcoming year!

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Ruins near Pisac, Sacred Valley, Peru

The Wright Family

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Small World

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I little over a year ago I probably passed within 1/2 mile of the guy on my left

There is a small Morman church here in Curahuasi and as many of you know, young people of this denomination usually are required to do two years of mission work.  Over the last few weeks I’ve gotten to know one young man since I’ve been treating him for his knee.  This past week his friend came with him who had just arrived from the States.  As we got to talking we both found out we were from TN!

“Yea, I’m from Chattanooga area and I previously worked in Cleveland, a small town about 1/2 hour  from Chattanooga.” I said.

“What, I’ve been attending Lee University!” said the young man.

As most of you know, Lee University is in Cleveland TN and we spent the next 15 minutes talking about all the common places we knew and even of the dumpy taco truck stand I used to go to for my Mexican fix at lunch.

Who would have thought I would run into someone from Cleveland, TN in the middle of Peru?  It really is a small world!

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The New Diospi Suyana Movie

For years there has been a movie/documentary about Diospi Suyana Hospital in German and Spanish, but now we finally have one in English! If you want to here the story of how faith in God can produce amazing results, take a look at this movie. Somewhere during the last few minutes you may see someone you recognize (for at least 2-3 seconds).  🙂  Here is the article and link to the movie from the Diospi Suyana Website:

 

The English film is online

The movie

The moving experience now available in English

Jakobus Schneider and Micha Spannaus have once again achieved a perfect result. Watch it online or order a copy from our German office.

Watch the movie here

Klaus-Dieter and Martina John had a fantastic vision; to build a top quality hospital for the descendents of the ancient Incas in the Peruvian Andes. They would need millions of dollars, thousands of supporters and many dedicated co-workers ready for the task.

Watch in amazement as people from all around the wordl rally to support them. The leading Peruvian newspaper “El Comercio” wrote: “It is impossible not to believe in miracles after hearing the story of the John family!”

Diospi Suyana will both encourage your faith and challenge you. Featured in over 400 TV and press reports worldwide, this “Hospital of Faith” will inspire you as it has countless others.

 

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Celebrating Peru!

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Two of the cutest kids there!! 🙂

Today we celebrated Peru’s Independence day! I have heard that celebrating can last for a week to a week and a half. We will see how lucky we are! 😉 Our kids have been very busy preparing for this day, putting in lots of after school hours to practice with the band.  I know I am a little biased, but our Diospi kids looked awesome! Great marching, band playing, and outfits!

 

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Ben and his drum

Benjamin played the drum and was quite proud of himself for being able to flip his drum stick while not missing a beat. He figured that out during one of the 2 hour practice sessions. 🙂 They had 6 of those sessions in the past 2 weeks.

 

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Syd and her lita

Sydney played the lita which is like a xylophone. During practice they had to hold the lita up against their side, but today the first 3 girls to arrive got a strap to help hold it!  She was so happy!

 

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The lita girls

Sydney and Annie both played the lita which made it a lot easier to get Syd out the door to practice. So thankful for Annie’s friendship with Sydney!

This is the band in the background with a few of the Diospi students marching in the front. It was kind of hard to get pictures because there were so many people.

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Some of the Diospi boys marching

 

Here are a few pics. Lucky for us, we were one of the first schools to march, so there wasn’t TOO much waiting once things started rolling. However, the kids had to be at the meeting place at 8:00 and didn’t march until around 11:00. So there was a bit of waiting. 🙂

 

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Annie, Sydney and Mariella

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Sydney and Mariella

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The band playing while the Diospi students marched by

 

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The little Diospi kids marching, they are so cute!

I wanted to put a video on here so you could hear them playing, but I can’t get it to participate at this time. 🙂

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Foreign Moms in Touch

This is a post about a group of great ladies that I am so glad to be part of! Thanks Allison for posting.

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Me, holding Ludwig Friedemann; Konika Wright, Annett Friedemann, holding Annelena; Damaris Hassfeld; Verena Bigalke; Sabine Oswald; and Tabea Seiler, holding Robin Me, holding Ludwig Friedemann; Konika Wright, Annett Friedemann, holding Annelena; Damaris Hassfeld, holding a Moms in Prayer International guidebook; Verena Bigalke; Sabine Oswald; and Tabea Seiler, holding Robin

This is a picture of encouragement.  This is our Wednesday morning ladies’ prayer group.  This is also a picture of missionary life because three of these lovely ladies have said goodbye this summer and are back in Germany.  Annett, the blonde; Tabea, in the green shirt holding the baby; and Sabine, in the red sweater; are all gone and we miss them.  This picture was taken in Verena’s backyard and I like how the clothesline made it into the top of the picture.

We have decided to make our meeting time into a “Moms in Prayer” meeting, which is a group to pray for a school, formally known as “Moms in Touch.”  Our friend Amy Reid took this picture in May because…

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You are making a difference!

Just wanted to write a short note of appreciation to all who are supporting us!  Thanks to you, Hospital Diospi Suyana can now offer physical therapy to patients suffering from pain and dysfunction.  In the past 5 months, we have helped more than 900 people!  Some of those people could have traveled somewhere else for their therapy, however, the majority would never have had that opportunity.  Moreover, the hospital missionaries are continuing to enjoy fresh baked bread each Tuesday thanks to Konika’s talents.  Sometimes some nice “comfort food” goes a long way when you are missing your home halfway around the world.

This last week, I had an elderly woman come in with hip pain.  She had visited multiple doctors and clinics in the vacinity and each told her that her hip joint was fine and they couldn’t do anything for her.  After evaluation it was apparent she had trochanteric bursitis (bursitis on the outside of the hip).  After showing her the correct stretches/exercises and performing a little treatment, she broke down and started to cry.  She explained she’s been living with this pain for so long and nobody has helped her.  “Thank you so much,” she said. “You are an angel.”

As a physical therapist, you typically don’t see patients in life or death situations.  Sometimes I wonder if I’m making much of a difference.  However, this patient made me realize that reducing a little pain, especially when it is chronic, can greatly influence someone’s life and the lives of those around them.

Once again, you have enabled us to be here to try and improve the lives of those living here in Peru.  Thanks once again to all those who have partnered with us.  Together, and with God’s help, we are making a difference.  May we all continue to trust in God’s guidance.

If you would like to join our team or continue with your support, please click on the “Support” tab above.

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My assistant reviewing the home exercises in Quechua. About 20-30 percent of my patients don’t speak Spanish.

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Carlos and his mother have both visited the PT department for help with their back pain.

 

 

 

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Cafe Caire

The Caire’s thought of making their house into a restaurant a few weeks ago. It was a lot of fun!

cairesonmission

A couple weeks ago Allison had the idea of trying to create a night out for several of the young mothers that are missionaries here in Curahuasi.  There are two German women who have had their babies within the last months, and while there is support and friendship from the missionary community and the Quechua, it is not like being in your home country with a baby.  Those first several months have hard times, as all you mothers know.  So she came up with the idea of a restaurant night, and with the very strong encouragement of David, they worked to make it a reality.  We invited all the German parents who had kids to come to our house without their kids to eat at our restaurant.  The mothers with infants could bring their babies, and we would take care of them upstairs.  Allison and her friend Konika are experienced…

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Our recent life

Apology: I have had this post ready to go for over a week now, but our internet has not been fast enough to upload pictures. Today, it is working!! Yay!

There have been lots of happenings since our last post. Looks like we left off at the school inauguration… The following Monday, the kids started school. There were a few moments of nervousness, but they were mostly excited to get started. They were also very excited about their uniforms (this excitement has worn off a bit).

All ready for school

All ready for school

This is their uniform for every day. Including the sweater. Benjamin is not the biggest fan of the sweater (he thinks it is a bit too purple).
The school is brand new, as you know, and there were a few hick-ups (which is expected, the first go around) one being, the school supplies were not in the classrooms for the kids. Which was a problem for Benjamin because we turned in his pencil bag, so the poor guy started a new school, in a foreign language, with no pen or pencil to write with (he didn’t end up getting his bag for over a week, but we sent some spare writing utensils the next day). Sydney lucked out, because on our way to school I gave her a pencil that I happened to be carrying. So lesson learned, don’t turn in the pencil bag with the school supplies. 🙂 On Thursday, I finally went to talk to Sydney’s teacher to ask where Sydney’s notebooks were. She only had one (we had turned in 5) and said that they had been looking all over an couldn’t find hers. I had reviewed my Spanish words that I was going to use all the way to school. I guess I lined up my words correctly, because I got my message across and after we found her books her teacher came up to me and started speaking to me really fast. I had no clue what he was saying, so Sydney pipes up and says ” Mom, he is saying that us English kids don’t always understand what he is saying, and he wants to know if you can come in and help translate for us.” Ha ha! Needless to say, I did not get the job. 🙂
Other than that, school has gone fairly smoothly. The kids have a fabulous girl named Elsa, who is from Germany, that helps them with their school work and helps them through some of their classes. She is also teaching them German, which is a huge hit!  She is super nice and I am sad that she is leaving pretty soon to return to Germany. 😦
Well, just as we were getting school started, we got an e-mail letting us know that the kids’ carnets were ready to be picked up in Lima. So after being in school a little over a week, we headed to Lima.

Waiting... We actually got to skip to the front of one line since we had kids, but we waited 2 hours in the next line.

Waiting… We actually got to skip to the front of one line since we had kids, but we waited 2 hours in the next line.

The last two times we have gone to Lima for carnet stuff, Nolan and I have gone without kids. So this trip to Lima, we tried to work some kid activities in around our appointments and a bit of shopping for things we can’t get in Curahuasi The highlight was finding string cheese; Sydney was so so excited!! We also found some cheddar cheese, which is quite rare.  Nolan and I both realized that it is A LOT easier shopping for supplies minus the kids! It was like they had not seen modern things in years.  It seemed that every item in the store they wanted to show to us, but it was fun to see them having a good time. We rented bicycles for an hour and rode up the walkway along the cliffs that overlook the ocean. At our turn around spot, there was a free BMX bike track and skate park, so Benjamin and Nolan took a couple laps.

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Ready to ride!

We went and played at the beach. (which is not comfortable to lay on)

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Plenty of rocks to throw!

We were also able to hook up with a couple friends from the hospital and we went to this water park. Its actually more of a fountain park, but fun none-the-less.  After the $1.50 entrance fee (can’t beat that), you were free to roam around the park with its 13 different fountain areas.   Many were in different designs, some went with music, some you could play in, and at night they light them up. It was a lot of fun, and a very nice park.

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The fountain park

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Inside a fountain

Watery tunnel

Watery tunnel

Another highlight was being able to attend an Adventist church. I do miss our church family! It is amazing how you can attend an Adventist church anywhere and it still feels like family. It is the little things!  🙂
While we were in Lima, we got a call letting us know that our house was finished and we could move in!! So after we flew into Cuzco, we bought some mattresses (yes our taxi was looking pretty funny )

Our loaded taxi

Our loaded taxi

and a few other things and drove straight to our new place. Then came the “fun” part of packing/separating all our stuff and unpacking it once we got it to our house. They do not build closets in the bedrooms here, so that makes storage and hang-up clothes a little bit of a challenge. So this week, we have been doing a lot of moving around, lots of figuring out what we need to buy (furniture), and what we can live without. Good times!

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Home sweet home

 

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Inside our gate

 

Our kitchen/ dining/ living room

Our kitchen/ dining/ living room

 

But we do owe Stephen and Finley a HUGE thank you for letting us live with them until our place was finished! I am sure it probably wasn’t easy having 4 extra people sharing their place, but they were very kind and put up with us for over 3 months! So THANK YOU!! (I know, it needs to be bigger! :))
Well I think that just about catches you up with us for now.

 

 

Categories: Konika, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

The Dignity of Man

I’m just rebloging this from the cairesinperu.com, an awesome fam here in Curahuasi; they actually are taking care of our children while Konika and I are in Lima getting our religious visas.

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Ryan is the husband of one of our physicians working in the hospital.  Besides being a great guy, he is a very talented photographer.  Both he and Kirsten, his wife, work harder than most of us to understand the Quechua culture and to try and bridge the cultural gap between us and them.  While I see a gap that cannot be crossed, they see opportunities for friendship.  I really respect the work they are putting in to make a difference here in Curahuasi.  Please take a look at the post below from the spanish portion of the Diospi Suyana Hospital website.

The dignity of man is inviolable 

Ryan Morigeau shows this photographically.

Week after week Ryan Morigeau saw poor patients in the waiting room of the mission hospital. A look at their shoes, their clothes, and not least, their teeth, indicate to us the sad and heavy circumstances in…

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