Thursday, April 5, 2012

Two Seasons!

The windows in our 3rd floor apartment during a steady rain fall!

Here in Arequipa, Peru we have two seasons, Rainy season and Awesome! We have just made it through the rainy season. Many weeks during the rainy season it rains everyday. The total amount of rain isn't more than what we are used to in Ohio. The part that makes rainy season here so different than what we are used to is the fact that nothing here is made for rain.

You would think after one bus gets stuck the other drivers
 would learn!
 Most of the buildings here are not made to keep out the water. But even worse is the fact that there is not a storm-drain system. A light rain can quickly cause the streets to fill up. Some of them quickly become impassible. The photos to the right I was able to take because the bus I was on for my ride home from work got stuck giving me a close up angle to take these shots. You might notice the smaller white van is up against the concrete median. Originally it was stopped about 3 ft from the concrete, then one of the larger buses came and weaved between the two buses. As the bus came through the force of the water displaced slammed the van in to the concrete.

Not 10 minutes after our bus stalled out there was a group of people that took off their shoes rolled up their pants and walked through the knee-deep water and up the hill to get on another bus. I chose to wait it out and see what would happen. After about 45 minutes a dump truck backed down in front of us and puled us out with a long cable. After I got off I ended up walking home because all of the buses that were coming by were quite full. 

I bet you are wondering why I didn't just roll up my pants and stroll through the water like some of the others. Well the picture to the left was taken on a side street about 50 yards up the hill from where my bus got stuck. This is another big problem. The water in the streets is not just rain water. Many of the drains on top of the buildings run into the sewer system and cause them to overflow. The best part is when you are in a taxi with the windows down because that is the only way for the driver to keep the windows from fogging up and you get splashed by a passing car. A little something I like to call a "Peruvian Swirly"!

Now here in Arequipa it is pretty much back to blue skies and Awesomeness for the next 9 months! 

Sunday, July 31, 2011

We have a few busy weeks ahead of us. We have finished Spanish classes so this will Becky's first full week in the office. I will attempt to be a translator for the medical team arriving the end of this week. With both of us working, we will need to have full time childcare. Well we almost have it all figured out. Alexis will be starting at a preschool near by, half-days. There is one more week of winter break and then she will start on August 8th. Hailey is the one we are not sure about just yet. We have a sitter for the afternoons which leaves Hailey in the mornings that we still need to figure out. One thing we have learned is that God provides for all our needs.

The pictures above are from the start and finish of the first Foam Block Church built by Extreme Nazarene Ministries. The Foam Block system provides a quick and easy way to construct the four walls of a church. The Foam Blocks are stacked to form the walls. After the walls are formed with the blocks, they are then filled with concrete creating many columns and a tie beam at 4 feet and a 9 feet. The foam is then covered with concrete stucco. The finished building looks like a traditional concrete building. This system allows us to construct a small church building in a little over 2 weeks at about the same price as a regular concrete building.

See photos here

Just this past week Extreme finished our 2nd Foam Block Church. Here are some photos from the Puerto Maldonado Construction/Momentum Team.

I will try to keep you updated on the Medical team that will be here for the next 2 weeks. In the mean time we would love to hear from you. We would love to be able to answer some of your questions. You can Email us at:


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Extreme Peru 2

All of our work here at Extreme starts with the 40/40s. 40/40s are pairs of young missionaries (Each pair consist of 1 Peruvian and 1 non-Peruvian) that go out in their assigned locations with the goal of planting churches. If I have my stats correct, by the end of this year Extreme will have deployed 40 pairs into the mission field.

Many times we have short term groups come down to help reach the community. We call these groups "Momentum Teams". These teams do all kinds of things to assist the 40/40s in reaching the locals in the community. Just a few short weeks ago we had a team (20+) right here in Arequipa for 2 weeks. They did everything from painting to festivals to soccer (futbol) and volleyball tournaments. Here are a few stats from those weeks that show the momentum and the contacts that we received for the the 40/40s to follow up on. 

  • 1812 came to our events and heard the gospel message and met our 40/40s in their town.
  • 282 people accepted Christ, almost all in and around the 40/40 church plant areas.  Most of these people already know our 40/40s                  
  • 365 more people have requested a visit by our missionaries in their home, also in and around the church plant sites.
On top of all the lives that have and will be changed as a result of the hard work from this past momentum team many of the team members left transformed as well. A number of those team members showed interest in some of our long term opportunities both here on the field and in the US. 

Here is a link to some of the photos from the Momentum Team in Arequipa:

Once there is a group of people with their own pastor that meets regularly and has a steady income and meets all the requirements set by Extreme, the next step is to build a building. A place for the Church to Meet, to Worship God and to Grow! This brings us to our "Construction Team". Like the momentum teams, these teams come down for 2 weeks, only their focus is to build a structure that is needed for a place to gather. 

This week we will be breaking ground and pouring the foundation for a Foam Block Church right here in Arequipa. This if the first of many foam block churches to be built in and around Peru. I personally am excited to get to help with the construction of this building (and not just because I get to skip class).  

More on the foam block church to come.

Go to and see how you can be a part of this extreme ministry.

Check back there will be much more to come. Because when it comes to Winning Lives for Christ, "There is no Off-Season".  

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Never on schedule but always on time!

It has been a little over 2 months now and we are getting along pretty well. Many times satan tries to make us believe that we are not getting anywhere and there are many times it seems that we are just doing the same things over and over again and not getting anything accomplished. Learning a second language is not an easy task especially with two kids. It is very difficult to find the needed time to study. Becky works in the office every morning. They are making a lot of changes in the office so it has been difficult for Becky to keep up with the limited time she has. While Becky is at the office I stay home with the girls and usually don't get much studying done. Although Satan is always trying to push us into a rut we are able to look back and see what we have accomplished in this short time. We are also able to look forward to a more predictable schedule after our Spanish classes are over.

As of last week Becky and I both are officially certified in "Pre-Basic Spanish".  Becky has had to take 3 weeks off from classes so that she could get her training done in the office and since we are the only two in the class I took off this time as well. We have also had to take off for a return trip to Lima to finish our residency and to start the process for the girls. Even with all our setbacks we now know 2 present tenses, 1 future tense and 3 past tenses. The problem is you have to know the verb in order to conjugate it. Sooner or later we will get there.

We are adjusting quite well. There are a lot of things that we have to do differently than what we are used to but nothing really to unusual. The three things that we don't have here that we are used to having are a car, a dish washer and a dryer for our clothes. We are learning more and more of the bus routes which is how we get to most places because it is the cheapest but when we are short on time or have a lot of  groceries with us it is easy to get a cab and not really that much more expensive than the buses. Washing the dishes and hanging our clothes to dry are just things that we have gotten used to. We have two drying racks for our clothes (we are on the 3rd floor and do not have space for clothes lines).  We haven't had to make too many changes to our eating habits. We have had to cut out a few things because the price is too high, but for the most part we have added a lot of bread, rice and potatoes to help meals stretch a little farther. It's not a meal unless there is rice or potatoes or both. We don't have car seats for the girls when we are in a taxi and when we are on a bus we may not even get a seat. And finally bringing up the rear and wrapping up this addition of "what's different in Peru" the plumbing and sewer system here will not support paper products so all the TP goes in the trash. More to come.........

The girls are doing great. Coming home from church a week ago we had just gotten off of one bus and saw our next bus coming around the corner. Alexis started yelling "para, para". which of course means stop. There  was a line of people waiting to get on that bus so we did make it in time.  Alexis is ready for her 4th birthday this Thursday, June 2nd. I think Hailey has accomplished the most out of the four of us. Since we have been here she has gotten 4 new teeth, learned to walk and had her first birthday and I am sure it won't be long till she starts talking (we just aren't sure what language she will speak in).

Update on what's happening with Extreme Nazarene coming soon.