This is the final blog post about my Spring Break! I just wanted to share a little about some personal visits I was able to make while in Oaxaca. Though I had a great time being a tourist, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to meet some friends who were living in the area.
First, some of you probably saw my post about my travel partner accidentally booking accommodations at a nudist beach. It was really uncomfortable and I didn’t stay on the beach more than an hour or two. It was definitely the lowest day of my trip. We had just finished an overnight bus ride, the humidity was stifling, we were half way through the trip so energy was running low, I’d expected a relaxing day at the beach and didn’t get it, and I was stressed trying to figure out how I was going to meet my friend Scott, an hour away in Puerto Escondido, the next day. After some time in prayer and laughing along with all of you on social media about the irony of the situation, my travel mates came up with a plan that made the next day much easier. We ended up traveling together and once in Puerto I went to meet Scott and his fiancé, Isabel. We got to meet at a café just a block from my hotel. It was a great time swapping stories about our experiences in Mexico and also discussing our ministries and how what each of us was doing was making an impact for the Kingdom. I’m also very excited for them and their upcoming wedding (weddings technically, oh the joys of marrying internationally).
The other personal trip I was able to make was from the capital of Oaxaca to Foundation for His Ministry, about 45 minutes away. If you know about the numerous trips I’ve taken to Baja California, they have been to visit this mission. The one in Oaxaca is more recently founded and is mainly a children’s home though it supports some other ministries as well. This was really important to me because it was my time in Baja at the mission that convinced me I needed to travel to Oaxaca one day. Hearing about the mistreatment of the Oaxacan people brought to work in Baja decades ago was heartbreaking. They had come out of desperation and ended up in similar or worse circumstances, but without the support of their own culture, climate, and language group.
I also wanted to go because I heard about Mexican missionaries sponsored by the mission who went to live in the mountain villages to preach the gospel. Aside from the children’s home, the mission in Oaxaca acts as a base for the national missionaries in the mountains. This ministry is still dangerous and I met two Mexican missionary interns who had started the year serving in a mountain village and had to move back to the serve at the mission because things had gotten violent and it was too dangerous for them to remain at their assignment. Hearing more about this ministry to basically unreached people groups was probably one of the best parts of visiting the mission (especially since I had a little idea of what that would be like from visiting the syncretistic village). Another special reason for visiting was that my grandmother had visited for several weeks two years before and I was able to talk with people who had met her and a few teenage girls in particular who immediately brightened up when they heard I was her granddaughter.
Another highlight of the mission was getting to see their new school building and playground. I will admit I was envious. What I would have given for that natural lighting and space during my time at Lincoln!
They even have a zip-line on their playground!
All photos are mine.