As of today - December 17th

We are rapidly approaching our celebration of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ. And my departure from Belize. They happen to be on the same day, and it's all coming very quickly!

Last week went well. Our elementary schools held their last week of classes, and they are now out on break: the teachers appear to be just as elated as the students. There is a great sense of expectancy around here in San Ignacio and Santa Elena. Two of Juan and Maria's sons have arrived here in Belize to be with their parents, we have been busy holding charity dinners and community outreaches to the poor, and radios around here are constantly playing songs about snow and sleighs. Advent in Central America is a little strange.

A few weeks ago, we began an Advent discipline of holding Morning Prayer at the church every day at 7:00 AM. The attendance has been a wonderful as the worship together, and I've been alone at the church only one day morning. We have begun discussing offering Morning Prayer during Lent as well, and I have a secret desire (though not so secret since I'm putting it on my blog) to find a way to continue offering daily prayer when I return to Belize next year.

Preaching went well this past Sunday, and I also had the curious opportunity to drive a truck all the way to Belize City this past week for a diocesan lunch: my first time doing extensive driving in this traffic-pattern-lite country. The Lord kept us all nice and safe.

My focus this week is on pre-Christmas pastoral ministry and pre-flight packing. In addition, this week marks the much-anticipated end of the ancient Mayan calendar, whether for weal or for woe, and pagan religious leaders from across the country and other Central American nations will be gathering in our district for commemorative rituals.

This Saturday we will be having our youth Christmas party, Sunday evening will feature a Lessons & Carols Service, Monday evening we will hold a Christmas Eve and Pageant service at which I am preaching, and Tuesday morning I fly home to begin re-raising support. Thank you for keeping me and us and all of these events in your prayers!