Spruce Pine UMC   Costa Rica Mission 2007
Tuesday night we attend the service at a Church of God in a small, poor village nearby.  It turns out to be, most likely, the highlight of our trip. The church is full, 50-60 people, but our van is only the 2nd vehicle there.  No one else can afford a car; they walk everywhere.  We are told in advance that we will be expected to sing for them, we sing 3 songs. After a 2-hour sermon and prayers, we are asked to come to the front of the church for a special prayer. The pastor prays for each of us individually while our host, John, translates. (The pastor occasionally speaks in tongues)The pastor anoints each of us with oil while the entire congregation gathers around us and lays hands on us. The tables have been turned, we came here to minister and instead, have been ministered to!!  What a powerful and humbling experience, one that we'll never forget. 

The Church of God that we visited, only a
cinder-block building with a metal roof, open between
the roof and walls. A bat flew around inside the
church, no one but us seemed the least bit concerned.
We make a new friend, this is 4-year-old
Maria. She sits with us for the entire service, her
big dark eyes and wide smile steals our hearts.
We sing (and not very well) being
accompanied by an old man with an out-of-tune guitar
who didn't know our songs. He strummed anyway.
Today Kim and Lynda are varnishing the trim
that they've been sanding for 2 days.
Pat and Sue prepare our delicious meals
featuring locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables.
Mike and Peter painting the concrete fence posts around 
the caretaker's house on the hill above the camp.

Neil spreading the rich, brown, volcanic
soil around cabin #12 under construction.
Guy and Mike working on preparing the
walkway in front of cabin #12.

Today we visit 160-foot high La Fortuna
Falls, about 2 miles from the camp. On the way there,
we see a wild howler monkey. It's several hundred
steps to the bottom of the falls, a 15-minute hike.
Peter goes swimming in the pool at the bottom.
A huge tree on the journey to the bottom of
the falls. It dwarfs Mike and Kim.