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St. Mary’s in Ecuador: February 16

Our group was completed with Denise’s arrival at around 4AM.  Her flight had some difficulties, but Sister Annie was there to give her a warm Guayaquil welcome and a safe ride to the hotel.

Annie met all of us in the morning and drove us to the Damien Center.  After a tour we were invited to attend a special celebration mass in the Chapel.  There we met several residents and had a chance to visit with them after the service.  Then they showed us the area’s where they live and spend their time.  A common theme shared by the residents was their thanks for God’s many blessings; for giving them a place to live here at the Damien Center, and to be a part of the community Sister Annie has created.  And also for people like us that are willing to come in to visit with them and spend time together.

We were all treated to a massage by Frances, a frequent long term visitor to the Damien house.  An amazing bonus for weary travelers!  She has magic hands that normally help the residents, but her room was getting a new roof so she had to set up shop in a temporary room.  It worked well for all of us!

In the afternoon we went back to the hotel for a little down time before dinner.
At 6 Annie, Danilo and Francis picked us up for dinner.  We ate at a wonderful seafood restaurant that has donated food to the Damien Center multiple times.  So it was nice to be able to give business back to the restaurant.  The food was fantastic!!

After a wonderful reflection time led by Valerie, we all were ready for some shut eye!  Only to begin it all again tomorrow…


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