- Date of publication 03-05-2009 With the summer comes the sunshine, the heat, the long holidays... a welcome gift in itself. Here, the arrival of summer heralds the Christmas festivities which are traditionally celebrated with a “chocolatada”, milk chocolate drink with cinnamon, cloves and accompanied by a fruit brioche.
Each community in the parish prepares one for the children. This year the 21st December was chosen (it is important to do it on the same day otherwise the children would go from one community to another!) As our parish is in a poor district, to the east of Lima, groups often come and bring this treat together with presents.
We were lucky enough to welcome 60 employees from the Central Reserve Bank in Peru, who as well as all the goodies, presented a magnificent show with a professional clown! The 500 children, from 0-12 years had a really enjoyable time and were very happy with their lovely presents. The week before some of the group came to inspect the area to see how best to organise the event and see if they could offer any other help. No doubt the few bricks and the cinders spoke for themselves and they offered us a semi-industrial cooker with a bottle of gas and 3 big cooking pots. It will be a pleasure to cook the pork for the "chicarronada" in July!
What really touched us was a telephone call on Monday morning from one of the bank managers to say thank you for the previous day and for having allowed them to give pleasure to the children. That's great, isn't it?
Making practical use of the holiday time... after the Christmas festivities, the holidays are a time when we organise training, recreation etc... as was the case this summer with a couple from Amiens, Yves and Elodie, who were accompanied by two young Belgian girls. Nora and Martine offered 50 children between the ages of 7 and 12 (the younger ones ran away) 3 weeks of reflection, activities and games using the theme: cultural identity. What imagination, what creativity! They used stories, drawings and puppets! Using song and theatre they were able to give the children a taste for reading. The parents who were present at the final performance were very impressed.
Let us not forget the outing organised by the Central Reserve Bank for 36 children aged from 4 to 10, for the inauguration of a theatre for children. Several of these children had never left Vizcachera and had never got into a big coach to see the town and had never had a sandwich... all of which was free. They were overjoyed!
Elodie and Yves are in Peru for a year, working in the schools, in the sierra and in the interior of the country. Nora and Martine have worked in the parish for part of the year in a centre for small children and will go on to work in the south-east of Peru in a hostel for children: a wonderful example of self-giving.
Holidays, time for relaxation, time to admire and, why not, learn to play the pan pipes. On Saturdays and Sundays, 7 children learn to play the pipes thanks to the competence and availability of a young man from the parish, Edgardo. In spite of his studies he takes time to be of service. He has had a professional training in music, especially percussion.
Our aim is to awaken hidden talent, to help appreciate the beauty of music and its capacity for inspiring calm and peace. A performance will take place at the end, the 1st March, the day we hold the parish assembly, to begin the new pastoral year.
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