We have had the blessing of being well connected with great missionary resources both in preparing to come to Cusco and in our time here in Peru. Many of those resources have come from our training organization, Great Cities Missions. Their work with us didn’t stop in training, though. During our years here, we have had frequent visits from experienced missionaries, some associated with Great Cities and some from other organizations or Christian colleges. Many have taken us out for meals, offered encouragement, counseling, and some on the field training in certain areas like team formation, conflict, transitions, or strategy for our work. To say it has been helpful to us would be a huge understatement and we have deeply valued the missionary care we’ve received and will continue to receive in our new domestic work in the states.
One of the bigger events in our missionary care is an annual retreat called Connections. They alternate men’s and women’s conferences every other year and even have a yearly event for Spanish speaking church leaders now. They have a care team of former missionaries and other Christians who are interested in missionary care who raise money individually so that the missionaries attending don’t have to pay any costs other than transportation to get there. The ladies’ retreat is held a few hours from São Paulo, Brazil, at Camburi Beach. Brazil is an amazingly beautiful country with incredible food and culture and just to be able to spend a week there would have been a huge blessing, but to be able to be enriched by daily lessons, songs of praise, and Bible study (away from kids!) and have lots of time for quiet time with God and great conversations connecting us with fellow missionaries in similar lifestyles to ours makes it even more special. There are ladies from all over Latin America in attendance and we separate into “connection groups” with missionaries we didn’t know previously and spend lots of time throughout the week in thoughtful discussion and prayer. It’s a great week and several of the ladies of the Cusco team were really blessed to be able to attend this past week.