August 2007 Newsletter


As the end of the Scottish summer holidays approaches and the sun tan wears off, greetings from a daily hot and humid Guayaquil and our shanty parish of Nueva Prosperina. Can I start off by saying a huge word of ‘thanks’ to all of you who have been so generous with your time, your energies and your cash. What you have given has truly been of benefit to the people of this poor area; they will never forget the generosity of so many Scots!

When I started this missionary journey over three years ago, I never imagined that there would have been so many projects on the go and I never thought that I would be so strongly supported by so many people. What you read in this newsletter is the fruits of your kindness and your hard work in so many charity nights. As we around these parts say “Muchisimas gracias”!

In this newsletter:

  • Opening of the Parish Church.

  • Fiesta Time.

  • So, What’s Next, Padrecito?

  • “Mi Casa es tu Casa”.

  • ‘Shining Star’.

  • Our Parish School.

  • Soup Kitchen.

  • And we are always expanding.

  • And Finally…

Fiesta Time

Inauguration, we had several events. The first of these was our Parish Novena, which I had written based on the Pope’s recent letter on the Eucharist. Each night there were groups meeting in each of the eight chapels, praying together, singing and reflecting on the Scriptures. Most nights I managed to join each group and was amazed at the depth of their reflections and prayer. Constantly I am reminded that the less material goods people have, the larger their hearts are for giving. On the final night of the Novena we had a Parish Reconciliation Service along the same lines as so many services held throughout Scotland. A few days later we had our Parish ‘Eucharistic Walk’ where, with the Blessed Sacrament in my hands (which were pretty sore by the end of the walk) I walked with the parishioners from one end of the Parish to the other, visiting the chapels on the way and having a short service in each. As we made our way through the streets, past bamboo after bamboo home, I was reminded that God walks amongst his poor people , and he is truly present here.

And we are always expanding

In spite of the fact that we have just inaugurated our Parish Church, and having 8 smaller chapels, I have been aware that one area of our Parish was not being served.

In Scotland you would expect people to travel to their Parish Church, here the people rely on public transport to get around.

This is costly and most cannot afford it, added to that, they are often scared to leave their homes unattended at night. So, I decided to look for an opportunity of getting some land to build a small chapel. I made initial enquiries in this area called ‘Reynaldo Quinones’ and was amazed to find that the leader of the sector was offering me, free of charge, a plot the size of a football pitch; I had only been looking for a small plot of land. The community was so enthused about the idea and immediately got together and organised a ‘clearing the weeds’ event, followed by a couple of bingos. What the long-term future holds for the plot of land, I do not know, but in the short term, we will level the land and put up a bamboo chapel so that we can have somewhere dignified to celebrate our Friday night Mass. At the moment we are out in the open air!

Read the full August 2007 Newsletter here:

A4 Newsletter (August 2007)

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