Tuesday, September 18, 2012

September in Chile.

At church they made me stand at the front of the stage and chant Vi VI VI Le Le Le Viva Chile!! They seemed to get a real kick out of it!

This is me after they dragged me to the center of the Circle.....What have I gotten myself into?! haha!
How Do I even begin to explain an experience that is completely different than any other I have ever had, I find it to be difficult to say the least. How do I describe the sites and smells enough to give a mental picture of the images that now graced my memory and filled up my heart, enough for you grasp just a little of what September will always remind me of. Some of the thoughts that have gone through my mind as I sat amongst my church family in the circle of chairs on the church yard for 3 hours of singing, dancing and games, or in a stadium of thousands of chilean flags being waved as the anthem is being sung, thoughts like " Soak this all in Candace" "Remember this one Candace" or "I am so undeserving of this opportunity." I just feel truly enriched at being given a chance to open my eyes and experience the pride and customs of this such a vastly different country and people. It has broadened my awe of my Heavenly Father who loves all of these people too, these amazingly beautiful, amazingly different people.  As I see the differences in the cultures from the food ( Bread, Sausage, Empanadas ( which is bread with meat or cheese, onions, egg, ect on the inside) and Coke a Cola) the bright costumes with the puffy skirts and sombreros, beautiful ponchos and boots with the biggest spurs i've ever seen, down to the spanish guitars and very lively rythems. September is the Month of celebration for Chile's Independence, and by month...I mean, quite litterely...month. You could start feeling the excitement the first week of September. Their Patriotism is something more passionate and exciting than ive ever experienced but imagine it is what our grandparents remember our Country being like when they think of their youth. You know back when people would buy war bonds in support of the military, speak loyally about our country, and have leaders that respected our national anthem as its being sung. I feel that I've been able to step back in time to that time period in America, by being here in Chile during their Month of Independence. Completely Loyalty and Pride.

Just to give you an idea.... It is MANDATORY that every household or building hang a Chilean Flag
In most of the schools ( Our English One included) the students begin at Pre-K to learn the different historic and native dances of their country. In total Our students performed 8. They represent all the regions, the North the South and the Middle ( Santiago). They have totally different costumes, the music sounds different, but they have the one thing in common, they represent the history and people of Chile. Every dance performed whether at the school performance or at the stadium, is recieved with cheering, whistles and loud singing.
One thing I have heard over and over again is "Vi Vi Vi Le Le Le Viva Chile!!" And ill never forget feeling the bleachers rumble with the strength and the force of all those voices united singing to their country.
Many of the schools have the entire week of the 18th off, and many Jobs got a couple days off as well. I have enjoyed the time spent with friends I have made here, and felt the excitement personally right along with them, a sense of Pride in what a great country Chile has to my ignorant surprise turned out to be.

Oh just random dancing that you see as you walk through the streets.

This was inside a Mall...

The day of our Schools Chilean Fiesta!

Our outfits Represent the North of Chile! This is my little Ming-Zhe who did SO WELL in the dance!

My sweet little ones. Cutest thing I heard this past week was while teaching them about Jonah. On monday I asked them who had heard of Jonah, and what I heard was " I have ms Candace!! ( His eyes grow huge as he inhales and exhales deeply) God put him in a fish!!" Haha...I made sure and told them that God had not put anyone in a fish since!

Singing one of the Chilean Anthems!

Pre-k was combined with Kindergarten!! Ahh there they go!! :)
I had a mom pull me aside after the performance and tell me " I really appreciate that you have really wanted to be a part of this culture while you are here and experience and enjoy the different customs." I think that was said because I walked around for hours searching for one of the costumes to wear...and ended up buying an entire outfit for less than 20$! It was a great find! And I wouldn't of wanted it any other way. Just liked I wear Red White and Blue on the forth, here they dress up, so it was a given!

The second day of celebration we went to the "Park" which ended up being a lot like a State Fair!! And we went with the family who has become my second family here in Chile. They are so dear to my heart and it warmed my heart to hear cody say as we are waving the Chile flag and (trying) to dance the Cueca " Im glad God had you come here so that I could meet you." He got saved coming to church with us a couple months ago and continues to come to a bible study here at the Hagertys with Seba ( the brother on the right) .

The only had about 2 rides for adults and it didn't look impressive...but IT WAS!!! Mostly because there was no safety belt and the entire time it is spinning around you are not only feeling the lunch you just ate, but you are seeing your life flash before your eyes!!

Ready for the Horse Show to begin!!

Coffee anyone?!?!

This particular Group represented the Native Indians of Chile. They were encredible.

This was when everyone crowded the floor and began to chant Viva Chile and dance the Cueca!! I think I had goosebumps for about 30 minutes straight!

Friends for Life

Awesome Firework show!!

The whole gang!

This was what they rescued the cole miners with! Very neat to be able to see this!

Dinner and A Show!

I had never seen horses do what they were able to do at this show. Here he is dancing with the lady!!

More dancing with the horses!

I (almost) learned how to do the native dance of Santiago...the Cueca, because I quickly realized it is very respectful to the people to try and take part in it, even if you are litterely tripping over your feet! After being forced to do it in front of my entire church haha, I had numerous people approach me, slap my back and tell me how happy they were I had tried!

After the Big Horse show they opened up the entire stadium to Cueca dancing and lit up the dirt ground with lights and struck up the band. It was amazing how quickly that floor about the size of  a football field filled up with teenagers on up to white haired couples ready dance the historical and patriotic dance of Chile.

Today I've been invited with some  missionaries to a cookout ( which is a cool similarity to the States during July) and I am looking forward to the fellowship.

As I was writing this blog I was again struck with an overwhelming sense of Gratitude to not only the Lord but to the ones who are supporting me to be here. Thank you for your friendships, your prayers, and your support along the way that have led me up to this point. The Lord knows His plans for me, and they continue to humble me, break me, build me back up, and change me. To God be the glory, and to Him I commit this beautiful country and pray for a revival to take place. The Catholic Church was present also at the Horse show as a statue of "The Virgin" was walked out on a wooden plank as a very somber song bellowed out of the speakers...of which I only picked up "Maria" numerous times. It was walked by 5 men to the middle of the stadium and then taken to sit at the head of the stadium throughout the whole show. It was so heartbreaking yet also predictable. These people need the truth, they need hope, and they need Jesus Christ. Please pray with me for the Pastor's and the church's here who are trying to be a light amongst people who much, truly believe they already are Christians! 

No comments:

Post a Comment