Wednesday, December 26, 2007

What we do on Christmas Eve


Don't mess with me and my chocolate!

My daughter, Jewel, takes on her brother and cousins in defense of her chocolate.

Update: to see the Bloopers and the final Director's Cut, check out Yekwana Man

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

What Christmas Means to Me

Christmas is a day we remember the birth of Christ. Was he born on December 25th? Does it really matter?

On this day we remember His birth, we include Him in that celebration. Even when many try to keep Him out of it, He is remembered! It may only be in the words of a Christmas carol sung around the tree, but many people all around the globe will be celebrating the historical fact of the birth that changed the world!

I try and overcome all the commercialism and paganism involved in the tradition of Christmas by using the opportunity to focus on Christ! Put Him first! Lift Him up! Make Him the reason for the Season! Exalt HIM!

After all, He is the Greatest Gift ever given! His birth was for a purpose. He was born to be our Saviour! He was born to save us from our sin, from the penalty of our sin, from the guilt of living a life of sin.

For God so loved the world He gave His only son! Paul calls this the Unspeakable Gift!

It is a gift, freely given to all men. Have you accepted this gift? We are all in need of this gift as we are all born into the human race with a sin debt.

Our debt;

"Because all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God." Romans 3:23.

His gift:

"The wages of sin is death; but the GIFT OF GOD is eternal life through JESUS CHRIST our Lord." Romans 6:23.

Christmas would be a wonderful time to accept this Gift of God!

Receive His forgiveness! He was born, God in the flesh, for our redemption. He was sacrificed and died for our atonement, and He rose again to provide a way for all to have forgiveness if we but repent. It is a gift given to us freely, but a gift that came with a high price!

The True Cost Of Christmas

( by Chyrll's Corner)

It cost Mary and Joseph the comforts of home during a long period of exile in Egypt to protect the little Babe.
It cost mothers, in and around Bethlehem, the massacre of their babies by the cruel order of Herod.
It cost the shepherds the complacency of their shepherd's life, with the call of the manger and to tell the Good News.
It cost the wise men a long journey and expensive gifts and changed lives.
It cost the early Apostles and the early church persecution and sometimes death.
It cost missionaries of Christ untold suffering and privation to spread the Good News.
It cost Christian martyrs in all ages their lives for Christ's sake.
More than all this, it cost God the Father His own Son-He sent Him to the earth to save men.
It cost Jesus a life of sacrifice and service, a death cruel and unmatched in history.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Guess What?

It's official !

My son, Joshua, put an engagement ring on Naomy's finger!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Mí Anhelo Hoy

A mirar a tí, Señor!
Y no mirar atras!

A caminar contigo, Señor!
Sin desmayar!

A postrar ante de tu altar, Señor!
Y no lamentar!

Solo a tí Señor,
Quiero amarte mas y mas!

Tagged, twice...

A meme from: Amazing Facts and

1. Wrapping or gift bags? Both, prefer bags as my wrapping jobs are ugly!
2. Real or artificial tree? Artificial, all that was usually available in the jungle.
3. When do you put up the tree? When ever the kids bug me enough!!!
4. When do you take the tree down? Before New Years
5. Do you like eggnog? No, I prefer chicha! (unfermented )
6. Favorite gift received as a child? A Shirley Temple Doll
7. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes.
8. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Tooth paste in a missionary care package.
9. Mail or email Christmas cards? uh....I'm not too good at that either!
10. Favorite Christmas movie? Burro Pequeño
11. When do you start shopping for Christmas? When I have some spare money!
12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Hallacas y Pan de jamon!
13. Clear lights or colored? colored lights
14. Favorite Christmas song? Feliz Navidad ( I one tu wich chu a medy Chreesmus!)
15. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? This year, travel to the in laws! (first time in 24 years!)
16. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer?
Rudolph, Blitzen, and, uh... well,... how many are there?!?!?! How about Pancho or Beto?!?!?!
17. Angel or star on the top of your tree? Angel
18. Open your presents Christmas Eve or Christmas morning? Christmas morning.
19. Most annoying thing about this time of year? commercialism
20. What do you leave for Santa? If I left anything out in Venezuela, the ants would eat them!!!
21. Least favorite holiday song? I don't know...
22. Do you decorate your tree with any specific theme or color? No, just the same old ornaments...
23. Favorite ornament? The four representing the first Christmas of each of my children.
24. Family tradition? I think our tradition is to not have one!!
25. Ever been to Midnight Mass or late-night Christmas Eve services? Yes.

A meme from an MK friend, Notes from a Chocoholic

1. What sounds do you think of when you think of Christmas?

Fire works! (It's a Venezuelan thing )
2. What smells does Christmas remind you of?
Panettone!! pan de Jamon!!! Pernil!!!! It's a Venezuelan thing)
3. What mental picture does Christmas give you?
Nativity scene, (It's a Christian thing)

Now here are some random questions about Christmas.

1. What is your favorite Christmas Carol?
O Holy Night!!
2. When do you open most of your presents?
Christmas morning
3. What kind of tree do you have this year?
We have a small 4 foot, artificial tree that still barely fits in the apartment!!!
4. Do you know at least two presents that you are getting this year?
Yes, I always pick out my own gifts! That way I am never disappointed!

Consider yourself tagged and let me know by leaving a comment if you do it!

Friday, December 21, 2007

The "Gallbladder" Christmas

I believe it was December 2004... yes, it was the last Christmas we were in the jungle. We did not know then that we would be forced to leave before the next year ended, thanks to the decree of President Chavez.

My son, Josh, had flown from the states to spend Christmas with us in the jungle. We flew in the MAF Cessna out to Puerto Ayacucho, Estado Amazonas to meet him and to do our supply buying. All went well and we drove down to Puerto Ayacucho, about an 8 hour trip, on some of the worst roads in Venezuela. The next day we flew the 1 hour 30 minute flight back to Chajuraña

We were excited to fly home and get the tree up and spend Christmas together and with the church people! Lots of big plans and even fireworks for the village. The very next day, Saturday, I began to feel ill but enjoyed watching the children decorate the tree.

Sunday, after the morning service, I made our traditional Sunday lunch...homemade pizza! We always ate pizza on Sunday and had our 2 liter Coke for the week to go with it. Shortly after lunch, I began to feel much worse.

I ended up in bed and by early evening was having terrible pain in my chest. It felt a bit like an ice pick was sticking through me and all the way out the back between my shoulder blades! By early Monday morning, I was not only in pain but was also vomiting.

Clint asked if I wanted to be evacuated to the clinic, but I hated to ruin everyone else's Christmas! I seemed to be feeling a bit better by late morning. He did call the missionary pilots on the radio to let them know we might be needing a flight if I did not improve. There were to be 3 planes in our area the next day.

Late that night, I had even worse pain than before and actually felt a hard, tender protrusion just below my upper right rib. By now, we knew it was the gallbladder. That was the longest, most painful night I have even endured. I also began to pass blood. No pain meds seem to be helping much.

The next morning, Clint began to prepare for a medical evacuation. The problem was that our car was in Puerto Ayacucho and I did not want to have surgery in Puerto Ayacucho! I would not want my dog to have surgery in Puerto Ayacucho! But that was where two of the planes were headed. The other plane, a NTM, plane would be passing directly over us in the afternoon and then flying on to Puerto Ordaz, Estado Bolivar. My own doctor was in Puerto Ordaz and the medical care is much better there...but, they could only take two of us!

So...Clint and the girls ended up flying to Puerto Ayacucho to get our car, Josh and I stayed and waited for the Puerto Ordaz flight. The other pilot flying in the area, Dan Whitehead, did stop by and check on me as I was still in excruciating pain. I remember asking him if he could use his Leatherman All Purpose Tool and just take the gallbladder out then and there!

Finally, my plane arrived. Josh helped me down to the airstrip. I was unable to sit up, so we removed some seats and I laid on the floor of the plane. I never realized how many bumps our airstrip had until that take off! Our pilot was Stefan Pyle and he is still my hero!!

Josh had been given a hand made indian straw sombrero that he wanted to take back to the states for use while working construction in Florida, so he was wearing that. Remembering that our international insurance was not accepted at the clinic, Clint had already given him 3 million Bolivares as well. ($1000 at the time)

The New Tribe missionaries had arranged to have an ambulance waiting at the airport in Puerto Ordaz and a missionary friend met the plane as well. And we were finally off!!

Once in the ER everything went quickly and I finally got some pain relief!!! While I was getting sonograms and tests, Josh was left to register me. He says that they asked him names, etc. but then they asked for a street address....

"Well, we don't exactly live on a street..."
How about a phone number?...
"Uhhh.... you see... we don't have a phone..."
A neighbor's number then???
" No...none of our neighbors have a phone either..."

The poor office girl did not know what to do! She finally found a manager and Josh overheard her say she had "some strange campesino, gringo- in a sombrero" out front. Finally, they said they could not admit me into the clinic without any info, they would need to send me to the state run hospital.
Josh said, " But I have CASH!" Now, he was the campesino, gringo, a strange sombrero!

(This is the same type of hat!)

Suddenly, they were able to admit me and find me a private room! Josh spent the night caring for me as Clint and the girls drove all night from Puerto Ayacucho to Puerto Ordaz. A terribly dangerous drive to make at night! Probably more dangerous than my gallbladder attack!

It seems that I had passed several gall stones before arriving, I remained in the clinic for 4 days. Thankfully, our missionary friends made sure that our family had a Christmas meal and a place to stay while I was hospitalized.

Thank God for good friends!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Family Favorite

(Spanglish Version)

'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the casa,

Not a creature was stirring -- Caramba! Que pasa?

Los niños were tucked away in their camas,

Some in long underwear, some in pijamas,

While hanging the stockings with mucho cuidado

In hopes that old Santa would feel obligado

To bring all children, both buenos and malos,

A nice batch of dulces and other regalos.

Outside in the yard there arose such a grito

That I jumped to my feet like a fightened cabrito.

I ran to the window and looked out afuera,

And who in the world do you think that it era?

Saint Nick in a sleigh and a big red sombrero

Came dashing along like a crazy bombero.

And pulling his sleigh instead of venados

Were eight little burros approaching volados.

I watched as they came and this quaint little hombre

Was shouting and whistling and calling by nombre:

"Ay Pancho, ay Pepe, ay Cuco, ay Beto,

Ay Chato, ay Chopo, Macuco, y Nieto!"

Then standing erect with his hands on his pecho

He flew to the top of our very own techo.

With his round little belly like a bowl of jalea,

He struggled to squeeze down our old chiminea,

Then huffing and puffing at last in our sala,

With soot smeared all over his red suit de gala,

He filled all the stockings with lovely regalos --

For none of the niños had been very malos.

Then chuckling aloud, seeming very contento,

He turned like a flash and was gone like the viento.

And I heard him exclaim, and this is verdad,

Merry Christmas to all, and Feliz Navidad!

Jim and Nita Lee (Dec. 1972)

Apple pie and coffee, anyone?

You Are Apple Pie

You're the perfect combo of comforting and traditional.
You prefer things the way you've always known them.
You'll admit that you're old fashioned, and you don't see anything wrong with that.
Your tastes and preferences are classic. And classic never goes out of style.

Those who like you crave security.
People can rely on you to be true to yourself - and true to them.
You're loyal, trustworthy, and comfortable in your own skin.
And because of these qualities, you've definitely earned a lot of respect.
What Kind of Pie Are You?

You Are a Plain Ole Cup of Joe

But don't think plain - instead think, uncomplicated
You're a low maintenance kind of girl... who can hang with the guys
Down to earth, easy going, and fun! Yup, that's you: the friend everyone invites.
And your dependable too. Both for a laugh and a sympathetic ear.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Vínculos en Castellano - Spanish Links

Unos de mis favoritos!
( no significa que estoy de acuerdo con todo !)

"...La llama está encendida..."

América Latina

Bíblia Reina Valera - Version information: Reina-Valera 1960


Noticia Venezolana

Luchando contra la judeofobia en la prensa
Malas Noticias

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Links

Read a funny story that has a Christmas twist at my daughter's blog!

The Witchdoctor!

Leave it to me to find a funny side to the whole Witchdoctor issue. Witchdoctors sound scary, and they can be, but when you know one on a first name basis....when your dad has fixed his broken finger...when you personally gave him a very near heart attack...when your brother considered moving in with him, becomes funny.

Read More HERE!

Read a Christmas Poem written by my youngest daughter!

The meaning of Christmas,
Is true and real,
It's not about presents,
Or the gifts appeal!

Though we may not have been there,
To see the great sight.
Three kings did see it,
And it gave them quite a fright!

A star in the heavens,
Bright and high,
An angel told them,
Follow that star in the sky!

So they rode their camels,
Not knowing where they were going,
But they made it to a manger,
And there was baby Jesus, all the while knowing.

They gave him gifts,
Presents and more,
Presents that no one,
can find in a toy store.

And right beside the child,
In the animals' stall,
Sat Joseph and Mary,
Sheep, cows and all.

Who would have known,
The greatest gift unless,
Jesus had been there,
King of Righteousness.

So while you set up your Nativity scene,
And put up your tree,
Remember the meaning,
And be thankful as can be!

I hope you remember.
I sure do!
I'm glad I could share
This quick poem with you!

Leave her a comment at Pink And Black Jungle Bunny!

Read about teaching Greek to an infant!
At Clint's Blog or see the grand daughters at Yekwana Man!!!

And then enjoy this Christmas Carol medley/Mix up. It reminds me of how I feel this Christmas!! Being here in the states for Christmas the first time in over 13 years., and only the second in 24 years, I am finding that all the carols I thought I knew...

I also have included an update with links, in Spanish, about the newly formed "Mision Espiritualidad" regarding the meeting to have been held last Saturday.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

All about ME!

My Blog Name is: Jungle Mom

But people usually call me: Rita, Mom, Aunt, Tia, Grand ma

I was born here: Fortuna, California

And I've lived here: California, S.C.,Florida, W. Va.,Ohio, N.H., Queretaro, Mexico, Barquisimeto,Cabudare, Ciudad Bolivar,Amazon jungle, and soon... Paraguay

Until I wound up here: Florida, for now...

My occupation is: Missionary

My favorite color is: green, shades of green vary, right now, jade green.

My favorite hobby is: reading, and blogging!

My favorite season is: Summer

A few favorite books are: Too many to name!!! Anything by C.S. Lewis.

Some of my favorite music:ok, don't laugh, I love Blue Grass and Venezuelan Llanera!!

My favorite kinds of movies are: Lord of the Rings!!!! Sci-fi .Anything historical. I love the History Channel !

My favorite actor/actress is: I can't say I have a favorite, really. When I find out what the actors believe and how they behave , I can't even stand to watch them in movies!!! Maybe, John Wayne!

My favorite food indulgence: chocolate!!!!

My favorite drink indulgence is: Coffee and Diet Coke! Water, if I must...

My favorite dessert indulgence is:Moose Tracks ice cream

One weird thing about me is: only one?!?!?! I am claustrophobic. I can not stay in a room without a window and hate basements. And elevators.

One of my fantasies is:Dropping Hugo Chavez off in the middle of the jungle all alone and see how well he handles it!!! HAHAHAHAHA!!!

One of my pet peeves is: People whining, and bossy women!!!! Ok, thats two...

And now...

Your Elf Name Is...

Fuzzy Stocking Stuffer

Christmas in the Jungle

The manger

Elementary Choir

Pastor Victor tells the old, old story.

Mary was GREAT with Child!

Mary and Joseph at the Manger

The Wise men Worship the Newborn King!

Thursday, December 13, 2007


I have just been made aware of a terrible situation in my

adopted land. I am at this time trying to confirm all the details

involved and do not know when I can post with authority.

Please, join me in prayer!!

"Twas the Night Before Christmas"

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Merry Christmas, My Friend

by Corporal James M. Schmidt, former U.S. Marine
First published in "Leatherneck Magazine", December 1991

'Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone,
In a one-bedroom house made of plaster and stone.
I had come down the chimney, with presents to give
and to see just who in this home did live.

As I looked all about, a strange sight I did see,
no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.
No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand.
On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.

With medals and badges, awards of all kind,
a sobering thought soon came to my mind.
For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen.
This was the home of a U.S. Marine.

I'd heard stories about them, I had to see more,
so I walked down the hall and pushed open the door.
And there he lay sleeping, silent, alone,
Curled up on the floor in his one-bedroom home. ,

He seemed so gentle, his face so serene,
Not how I pictured a U.S. Marine.
Was this the hero, of whom I’d just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a floor for his bed?

His head was clean-shaven, his weathered face tan.
I soon understood, this was more than a man.
For I realized the families that I saw that night,
owed their lives to these men, who were willing to fight.

Soon around the Nation, the children would play,
And grown-ups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom, each month and all year,
because of Marines like this one lying here.

I couldn’t help wonder how many lay alone,
on a cold Christmas Eve, in a land far from home.
Just the very thought brought a tear to my eye.
I dropped to my knees and I started to cry.

He must have awoken, for I heard a rough voice,
"Santa, don't cry, this life is my choice
I fight for freedom, I don't ask for more.
My life is my God, my country, my Corps."

With that he rolled over, drifted off into sleep,
I couldn't control it, I continued to weep.

I watched him for hours, so silent and still.
I noticed he shivered from the cold night's chill.
So I took off my jacket, the one made of red,
and covered this Marine from his toes to his head.
Then I put on his T-shirt of scarlet and gold,
with an eagle, globe and anchor emblazoned so bold.
And although it barely fit me, I began to swell with pride,
and for one shining moment, I was Marine Corps deep inside.

I didn't want to leave him so quiet in the night,
this guardian of honor so willing to fight.
But half asleep he rolled over, and in a voice clean and pure,
said "Carry on, Santa, it's Christmas Day, all secure."
One look at my watch and I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my friend, Semper Fi and goodnight.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Monday, December 10, 2007

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Missionary Gary Greenwood Reports Details of His Deportation from Venezuela

Jungle Mom adds,
Although lengthy, this reveals the truth of the situation for foreign missionaries in Venezuela. The most alarming is the fact that they questioned whether the dual citizenship child would be allowed to leave with the family!

Gary writes,

While the man behind the desk was reading the official statement, I over
> heard two talking beside me. One asked the other if we were going to be able
> to take the children with us and the reply was that he didn’t know but was
> waiting for the answer from higher up. This made us very nervous because
> here we were without any representation and tucked away from the public eye.
> Our daughter Havilah was born in Venezuela and given duel citizenship. The
> now obviously military run government claims 51% ownership of all children
> and she was being brought into question.

Jungle Mom adds,
I am editing some details.

> The Deportation:
> The story begins in 2005 when I went to San Carlos for the first
> time exploring the possibility of a ministry among the Yanomamo in that
> area. I met with the mayor and governmental committee of the area and was
> emphatically welcomed. They immediately drew up papers of permission to live in their town and work under their supervision. They also donated a 10 acre
> plot of land on the out skirts of the jungle frontier town for us to build
> homes on and a refuge for the Indians that arrived in town looking for help.
> All the documents were legalized by our mission lawyer and filed away for
> future use. We didn’t move immediately and start the work due to the removal
> of New Tribes and the political unrest towards American missionaries. This
> is why we decided to stay in Puerto Ayacucho until the Lord led us to move
> forward.
> I continued to make several trips a year to this area visiting with
> the people and getting a feel for the attitude towards us. Locally all were
> very receptive and pleading with us to come quickly. So after the missions
> trip and good responses I decided to visit San Carlos to make a family
> decision.
> We arrived Tuesday at noon and were met immediately not only by the
> national guard who is responsible for signing in the visitors but by the
> highest military man there in the area and town. He nicely asked who we were
> and what we were doing there. We answered honestly that we were missionaries visiting the area to see if we could obtain all the necessary permissions to move there in the near future. I took the initiative to arrange a meeting with him to present our plans. That evening he stopped by the house where we were staying and asked more details which he jotted down on a note pad.
> After a little while he asked if we could come to his office in the morning
> so he could write it all down easier.
> So Wednesday morning we went to his office with our passports and
> what mission papers we had on hand. He informed us that he had been called
> from PA and told we were New Tribes missionaries trying to reenter the
> jungle even though their permission had been revoked. We explained that we
> were not nor ever had been with NTM and gave him all the names and data
> necessary to prove this. He then said an official committee was flying in
> later that day with a lawyer and assistant to the military judge of PA to
> get all the information down in an official statement. We were confused why
> this was so important to know immediately, that they would charter a special
> flight and not wait 3 days for us to return to PA. But we were assured that
> it was nothing serious and we had done nothing wrong.
> That afternoon the committee arrived and came to the house where we
> were staying and asked many questions of who we were, what was our real
> motivation, what we felt about the Venezuelan government, etc. - - writing
> everything down and getting copies of all that we had. At the end they shook
> our hands, said everything looked good, we weren’t in trouble, and they
> would be in touch. Thirty minutes later they returned and ordered us to
> leave with them on the Hercules military plane to town. We were told that
> we needed to sign some papers and that they would bring us back the next
> morning.
> We packed one change of clothes each and took the hour and a half
> ride to town in the back of the military cargo plane. Were met by several
> armed national guard escorts and driven directly to the headquarters. From
> this point on we were not let out of sight of several armed guards and
> escorts. At the headquarters we were interviewed by a lawyer from the child
> protection agency and a forensic doctor both asking all the details of our
> lives, trip, and how we were treated. This surprised us but we complied and
> signed the statements. Then the military judge and highest authority in the
> state came to talk to us. He said we couldn’t move to San Carlos without
> getting permits from 5 offices first. We were fairly confident that we had
> all of the documents and permissions necessary, but needed to check with
> our Venezuelan lawyer who was responsible to represent us at that level.
> The judge said we would have to go to Caracas for more meetings.
> We were becoming suspicious of their intentions and puzzled by our case
> being treated as urgent and needing to be dealt with right away especially
> since we were not moving to but visiting San Carlos. But no one answered
> our questions and we had no idea of their plans for us. We were later given
> use of a phone to call our lawyer in Caracas and asked him to come the next
> day by plane. Then we were given dinner and taken to a room of two twin beds
> and told we would have to sign some more stuff in the morning. It was not
> explained why we couldn’t go home for the night even though we lived only 15
> minutes away.
> The following morning we signed some more papers and then were
> informed we would be flying to Caracas on a military plane. We asked to wait
> for our lawyer to arrive who was flying in from Caracas. But they told us
> to call him and have him meet us at the airport in Caracas. Sarah was 6
> months pregnant (PTL!) and had a severe migraine and upset stomach. So I
> told the guards she would not be going to Caracas with the children but
> would wait in our home while the lawyer and I fixed the papers. The Coronel
> agreed and told us that the soldiers would take Sarah and the children home
> but instead they drove us to the military hospital were Sarah was seen by a
> doctor who gave her an a pill her migraine. I spoke with the doctor who had
> often benefited from Sarah’s help with the Yanomamo in the hospital. He
> agreed that Sarah was in no condition to fly a third day strait, but said he
> was sorry and that there was nothing that he could do to help. So, we then
> were taken directly to the airport without being given the chance to go home
> or even get a change of clothes.
> Despite our arguing that we were being forced against our wills to
> travel, with no reason given, and under armed escort yet we weren’t
> officially under arrest, and after causing a large scene at the airport
> insisting that they return our passports, we were loaded onto our third
> plane and flown to Caracas with the promise that we would be met by our
> lawyer and a rep. from the American Embassy.
> Well they didn’t land at the national airport but a private looking one and
> no one was there to meet us. I was taken into a room with 10 officials and
> read my deportation reasons. The accusation was we were living in Venezuela legally, but without the necessary permission to do missionary work regardless of what part of Venezuela.
> This was a lie and we could have proven it with the proper paper work but
> were not given the chance to do so nor have our lawyer present to defend us.
> While the man behind the desk was reading the official statement, I over
> heard two talking beside me. One asked the other if we were going to be able
> to take the children with us and the reply was that he didn’t know but was
> waiting for the answer from higher up. This made us very nervous because
> here we were without any representation and tucked away from the public eye.
> Our daughter Havilah was born in Venezuela and given duel citizenship. The
> now obviously military run government claims 51% ownership of all children
> and she was being brought into question.
> We were once again put in a vehicle with armed guards to be taken to
> the immigration office in the city even though we asked to wait for our
> lawyer who was on his way. We were told to call him back and have him meet
> us at the office. As soon as we finished the call from the back of the car,
> a U- turn was made and we were taken to the international airport and locked
> in a detainment room. We were held there for over 24 hours again under
> supervision of armed immigration officers. Our lawyer was never permitted to
> see us though he tried for 7 hours to get through when he found out where we were. The embassy wasn’t allowed to see us either though we got to talk to
> them on the phone. We were given escort to buy food and use the rest rooms.
> Finally a flight was found and we were deported from the country Friday
> afternoon and told never to return .
> It is amazing that Havilah was permitted to leave since it is
> clearly unconstitutional to deport a Venezuelan citizen for any reason. But
> because of praying friends like you, the Lord allowed us to leave as a
> family. We have since learned of others who have recently been deported
> with much harsher treatment.
> What’s next? We don’t know, but would appreciate your prayers
> that God would lead us as clearly as he did Samuel and our response too
> would be speak Lord, for we your servants hear.
> It is our desire to still serve as missionaries as the Lord directs
> and we ask for your continued prayers for us and those who remain in
> Venezuela.
> In Christ and Content,
> Gary, Sarah, Isaiah, Havilah, & Baby Greenwood

From a Ye'kwana friend in Chajurana!!!

(1 hour ago)

Realmente creo que hicieron un buen trabajo en nuestra comunidad Chajuraña, por que marcó un camino que mucha gente lo siente asi y lo ve asi..fue una y es una referencia ahora..solo les pido que sigan orando por todo nosotros en especial por la iglesia.

This makes me want to cry.

Friday, December 07, 2007

The "BLOGGING Baby Shower"

One of the very first things I did in Paraguay was deliver all the gifts many of you had sent to my daughter for the baby, Abby.

Debbie at ~~~Apples of Gold~~~~had the wonderful idea which she coordinated with my sister, Pam ,at Midnight Musings. Many different bloggers sent gifts or money, so that I could carry it down to my daughter , Jackie, at Faithful in the few Things as a great surprise!

I had intended to put it all out and take photos , but, we arrived at the house at midnight and we were all so excited, I just started pulling things out and saying, "pen of jen sent this package with the cute matching dresses for you three and the cow doll for Elena! OH! And the cute farm animal purse!!! And cook books!"

"Debbie and Susan at, both sent checks, so we combined their money to get this Baby Album scrapbook you had asked for!"

Webutante also sent a check and wanted a gift for each of the girls and Jackie some shoes. So we purchased 2 pairs of summer sandals for Jackie and matching Christmas dresses for the two girls!

Pat sent teething meds and the folks at Smyrna Baptist Church and Missie, The Crownie's Mom all sent hair bows, candles, jewelry, and even gourmet coffees and a grinder for Brian!

Tiany at Less Of Me~More Of Him- sent a package of gifts Jackie had admired as a give away Tiany had done at her blog awhile back.

Of course. Pam sent her annual engraved ornament and ginger bread men ornaments for Elena to decorate and put on the tree. Which she did!

We had such a blast, I never got the pictures taken. OOPS! I really meant too!!! I wish you all could have been there and seen all the excitement! Especially, since my family teases me about all my imaginary friends in the blogashere! You all sent REAL gifts, so you can not be just imaginary friends, right????


Thursday, December 06, 2007

In Miami

Almost home again. We left Paraguay yesterday morning and will make it back home this afternoon.

I miss Elena and Abbie already! I will post pictures of our trip in a few days.

I just checked in on the Chavez agenda...he is already using language I can not, will not, use here at my blog! The man is mad and will continue the reforms. He had a row of military men behind him as he cursed the opposition and promised that he had not changed one bit At the end of the speech, he had the military men stand and chant for him, like a group of cheer leaders. Despicable show.

I will post all about what we did and who we met while in Paraguay soon.

Well, I'm off again!!!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Venezuela...Now or Never

If you wish to follow the blog of a Venezuelan
regarding todays elections,
read Daniel's blog for his updates.

PS: Any of my Venezuelan commenters, feel free to comment on your observations!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Venezuela, te amo!

I have sat here trying to place words in order, trying to make sense of my own prayers. I can't. I want a change in the country...but at what cost? I want the regime to fall, many will have to die? I want my friends to be safe, but...someone must have the courage to resist the evil! I want a change! I want it now! But, is this a necessary step the country of Venezuela must go though in order to understand and cherish their freedom?

I do not have answers, but God does! May He hold them in His love and give each one the strength to do what they must! May those who know Him declare His love and glory to those who do not. May all false gods be brought low and humbled before Him. May the future be better than the past!

Venezuela, querida mia! Pensar en ti, me hace llorar!