Visiting the Mission of Friendship and the surroundings of Merida, Mexico was great. We were there so that Anne, our prioress, could receive, in person, the annual commitments of a group of our oblates. It took place in the context of a true Mexican liturgy Saturday evening.
The music at Mass was great, a bit louder than we're used to, but well played and sung. The oblate ceremony after the homily was serious, touching and very meaningful.
In between the "oblate business" we visited some of the Mission's ministries, homes of the people they serve, and did the "tourist thing" at the Gulf of Mexico and the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza--amazing.
While we were gone Erie received its first snow of the season, 1/2" on the 11th. That's one of the craziest things about traveling, isn't it? That you can go from 85 degrees on the Yucatan peninsula to 40 degrees back in the northeast!
Here I am with a little 3-year old in his home--which was for all purposes like a cinder block garage with two inside rooms, some plastic chairs, a TV, a refrig with no food inside, some sort of hotplate for cooking, and a covered small area attached...what we might describe as really rough "camping out."
An oblate who is now a school administrator grew up on a farm outside of Merida and he has planted in their backyard grapefruit, orange, coconut, and many other types of fruit trees.
The party following the oblate renewal ceremony.