It was cloudy in Santiago on Thursday morning when we left for Vina del Mar. By the time we arrived in Vina around 11:30, we were greeted by bright blue skies and a beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean. We enjoyed eating lunch at Pizza Hut across the street from the hotel. The team was joined by 2 local CMA missionaries, Bob and Giselle Hepokoski and their sons and Chuck and Betty Osley. They shared with us what has been going on in their lives and ministry. Bob and Giselle will be leaving the mission field in May 2011. Please pray for the Lord’s guidance on Bob’s future employment. Chuck and Betty will be retiring as CMA missionaries in December 2011 and will return to North Dakota.
Many in the group spent the afternoon either napping or walking the boardwalk and shopping at the vendor booths. For dinner some of us walked to a small café and enjoyed some delicious hot chocolate and Chileno pastries. While there, it started raining. We were not prepared for the rain, especially Corey with his crutches and boot. Corey ended up putting a trash bag around his boot to keep it dry. Needless to say, we made the trip back to the hotel faster than the trip down to the café.
When we woke up Friday morning it was raining. It looked like the rain clouds would be hanging around for a while. While we were eating breakfast, we could see the blue skies approaching and eventually the rain stopped. YEAH!!! After the rain stopped, the team split up into several groups. Bob Hepokoski took Dennis, Dick, John and Bob and Debby Howen on a tour of the area. Claire, Claudia, Lee and Corey had a picnic lunch down at the beach. Kerry and Mickey spent part of the day relaxing. Daniel, Jessica and Anais drove down to Vina and went to Valparaiso with Tom, Andrew, Katherine, Ryan and Diane. We walked the “few” blocks to the subway and arrived at the port in Valparaiso. We spent some time shopping at the stores in the port area before walking to a restaurant for lunch. On the way to the restaurant we were treated with a nice surprise. The capsule used to bring the 33 miners up from the mine was on display near the Naval Academy located near the port. We were able to take our own photographs of the capsule in addition to purchasing professional photos of the capsule. Chile is very proud about the rescue of the miners.
We have enjoyed our time in Vina and Valparaiso. Saturday we head back to Santiago. We will spend some time in Los Domincos shopping at the Chileno outlet mall. We will stop by the Hogar to pick up our suitcases and say goodbye to the girls and the girls at the House of Hope. Before heading to the airport we will stop at San Cristabal Hill and take a gondola up the mountain and then take cable cars around the mountain to view the city of Santiago. On a clear day you can see the whole city of Santiago.
This is our last update before we head home. The team wants to thank all of you for praying for us and supporting Vision for Chile. God is doing great things at the Hogar and the House of Hope. Please continue to pray for this ministry and ways that you can be involved (prayer, financial or being part of a missions trip). Contact Tom Orme if you have any questions.
In His Love,