Friday, July 20, 2012
Boats and Planes
Last time she was at the monastery, Sis gave one of the beautiful Sisters (who lives and serves there) an origami flower. She also told the Sister of our plans to spend two weeks in Venezuela playing with kids while they waited to see the doctor. “Would you like to take some paper with you?” the Sister asked. Sis smiled and they disappeared for a few minutes, returning with a thick stack of computer paper in summery pastels.
Between the day at St. Gert’s and the trip, Sis forgot how to make flowers, but our translator-friend knew how to make little boats, which turned out to be just the thing for rainy season.
One morning, as we were waiting out the downpour that had halted set up in a small church, Sis and her friend Ceaser hurried to make boats, and sprinted across the street to take advantage of the river running down the drainage trench. They chased their boats with abandon, the on-looking adults cheered, and the little barcitos spun away from their charges.
When it wasn’t raining, we used the paper to make planes and sombreros.
And Sis set up an “official” airport in a vacant lot.
Every time I handed out a piece of paper, a spark of gratitude for the foresight of the Sister from St. Gertrude’s warmed my heart. I watched children huddling over muddy puddles, talking and smiling, and was grateful for the specific way that Benedictine hospitality had reached through the arm of one Sister, into the suitcase of my kid, and out into the campo around Bocono.
"Always be eager to practice hospitality." Romans 12:13b