Though we are March and in Lent, I have wanted to spread out my posts over the course of some months. So here is a look into my Cuban Christmas. I will let the pictures speak for themselves in this post
but the annual Christmas pageant takes place Christmas Eve starting at 9:30 PM
and ending close to 1 AM.
A dancing angel
Keeping guard of baby Jesus next to the stables
(which I had the chance to design)
It was good to see that so many people came
participate in this celebration
Yohandy working the lighting
The music group singing Christmas carols
The three kings
Presenting the gifts
A full house. Over 150 people came for the celebration
The two people to the far right are the two
daughters of my
Some important history about the baptisms with the Episcopal
Church in Cárdenas is that recently, with the arrival of Aurelio (my host
father), he has been stricter with the requirements needed for someone to be
baptized. Before the Episcopal Church was the place that people could go to to
be baptized “easily.” Now he requires people to attend the Alpha Course, which is a basic course in Christianity, as well as an introduction to the Episcopal Church and its traditions. Another way people can
be baptized is to attend church regularly and attend the Bible studies that are
held every Monday. The reason for this is to show and teach about why it is
important to be baptized. Recently, a few weeks ago, we baptized two people.
The community and people being baptized really understood what the whole event was about. At first the community did not accept this “strict” practice, but
now people are starting to understand why it is important to teach before
baptism. The following pictures are from the ceremony that was held a few weeks
ago -- my first baptism in Cuba.
Aurelio pouring the holy water into the font
The godparents and the candidates for baptism
Presenting a candle to the newly baptized, representing
The passing of the Peace normally lasts about 10-15 minutes
With the visit of my parents to Cuba in January, I have sent out a flash drive with long-awaited updates. (I cannot post pictures from Cuba with such slow internet speeds).
Church in Itabo.
In one of my earliest blog posts I mentioned this church as
an example of sustainable agricultural practices that are beginning here on the
island. Now I have the opportunity to share some of the pictures.
The back portion of the property. Crops pictured here include: potatoes,
beans, onion, garlic, yuca, malanga,
mango, avocado, and at the very end on the property in the beginnings of a pig
pen with its own methane processing plant along side.
The bell tower of the Itabo
The formation of a tornado.
Luckily it never touched ground because it was literally nearly above us.
The chicken coup. The chickens
here produce nearly
100 eggs daily.
Yes, they have turkeys too.
And rabbits too
These are the bee hives. They
assist with the pollination of the surrounding crops and also supply the church
with honey. One interesting thing I learned about these bees is that the entrance
to their hive in never left unguarded. The little circle at the bottom middle
of the box always has a bee keeping an eye out.