ICP also stands for Implementing Church Partner – also known as the local church Compassion works through. Sunday morning we got up, ate breakfast, and were off for our first project visit. Since it was Sunday we started the morning off with a church service at our first ICP visit. At each of the projects we visited we were greeted by the kids and – usually – they had whistles and kazoos and confetti and signs.
It took us a minute to make our way into the church and get settled, but once we were we were seated we were treated to a dance from the girls
and a skit from the boys
it was obvious to me, and I don’t think I was alone, that the kids were invested in these performances. Yes, they had worked hard to impress the sponsors that were visiting, but it was also a chance for them to focus on their talents.
After these performances it was time for the message. I might have been the only one who didn’t know the agenda, but I was truly surprised – and very blessed – to hear our tour leader, Sandeep, speak. He shared his testimony with the kids. Sandeep grew up in India and is a formerly sponsored child. I know he was speaking to the kids, but I think his message might have had a greater impact on their parents.
After the service we were treated to a brief glimpse into some of the curriculum taught at this project. For our team, it was a window into the Bible curriculum that is taught.
Then it was lunch time! First order of business was a quick game of pre lunch frisbee.
Then it was time to serve the kids and then their parents. I don’t think I’m exagerating (I might be, but I don’t think so) when I say there were 5,000 people.
After we’d served the masses it was time for us to eat. Lunch was amazing and the proof that it was amazing is that I have no photos. We were all too busy eating to take pics. But, it is important to mention here we were introduced to a new fruit. I didn’t take a picture of it, but if I were to describe it I would say it was very passion fruit-y. One of the translators told me it was nicknamed booger fruit and I just did a google search for Ecuadorian booger fruit and voilà,.. I now know it’s cultured name is la granadilla, but I think I prefer booger fruit. And I could eat it all day long.
Lunch was over and things were wrapping up at the church. It was time for our group to head off. But first, a couple of boys wanted their pic taken. They are pretty snazzy.
Our next stop was a boat ride on a nearby lake. There was discussion about wether we could all do the boat ride, was it big enough? Then we found out the boat could fit 60 – so boat ride for all! (and I’m very glad there were not 60 people to test that claim.)
Boat ride over it was time to head back to the hotel to debrief and relax. Most of us were pretty tired after a full day!