martes, 13 de agosto de 2019

The Summer Catch-up Post

Basically, since I posted last, camp and vacation have happened. Since I have been so bad about keeping up with the blog these past few months (and since you all probably don't care much about my vacation), I will try to wrap everything up as briefly as possible.

Pre-camp was mostly camp preparations, interpreting, and Bible translation meetings. We also got some American visitors before camp, which is always fun. They helped me with my work, taught a physical education class, went to various meetings with me, did a little sight-seeing, and got a bigger picture look at what is going on in the Deaf community as well as the interpreting community here.

The Bible translation project is going really well. Pre-camp we finished the gloss for 4 out of the 5 teachings of Jesus that we decided on for the pilot project and finished the last one after camp. We are now in the recording stages. We managed to film and edit The Good Samaritan before camp and took advantage of the gathering of about 275 Deaf people of all ages from over 10 provinces. We showed the video in chapel one night to see if everyone understood the signs that were used, and the feedback was very positive. Which was very encouraging!

Hannah helping interpret the photoshop and video editing training because my brain was so tired!
We also received training on how to use photoshop to add color to the drawings that will be used in the videos and how to professionally edit the videos. Fortunately, the two Deaf members of our team are really good at that stuff and I don't have to mess with it/mess it up haha!

We kind of put it all on pause during the month of July, and now we're back at it trying to finish up those five stories. Everything will be sent to a Bible consultant who will make sure that our translation is true to the original, intended message. And we keep going, step by step! It is a lot of work, but I'm having so much fun with this.

One of our Deaf team members got the opportunity to move to the States and will no longer be participating in the project. It is a great loss for us, but a wonderful opportunity for him. Please be with us in prayer as we choose the person who will take his place.

In my interpreting adventures, I ended up on TV again. Only this time, I knew ahead of time that it would be on TV. This one was a little different because rather than being a presentation, it was a TV interview with the National Association of the Deaf (ANSORDO). So, I would listen to the question from the interviewer in Spanish and interpret it into Sign Language, then see the response to the question in Sign Language and interpret it into Spanish. Going back and forth between languages like that was not easy! But it was a cool experience. However, I'm really hoping not to make a habit of this being on TV thing...

Leading up to camp, we found ourselves with a list of campers that way exceeded our budget and logistical abilities. We were looking at over 600 campers, 300 at the kids camp and 300 at the young adult camp. We were able to lower that to 500, but we still weren't sure how we were going to make that work with so few North American team members. How were we going to control groups of 50 campers as they rotate to their various activities?? It is an understatement to say that I was nervous.

Needless to say, as always, God provided and took care of things. Camp went very well. The Dominican leaders (most of whom used to be campers themselves) stepped up and made the whole thing possible. It is so cool to see the Christian leaders they have grown up to be.

We ended up with about 230 campers for the kids camp and about 270 for the young adult camp. Just like in our church, we have run into a very good problem with camp: too many people want to come! Camp Hands of Joy has become famous throughout the Deaf community here in the DR and everyone wants to attend. Moving forward, the camp leadership will have to prayerfully make some very big and difficult decisions about how to handle this good problem moving forward. Please pray that we make wise, God-led decisions.
Chapel during the kids camp. About half of the room isn't show.


Discussion groups. These are so important because it ensures that the campers understood what was taught in chapel and allows them to ask questions and discuss.

This summer, I took the liberty of a month long vacation. I felt like I needed to get away for a while and really disconnect. However, I only got to disconnect to an extent because while I was gone, our church hosted a hearing aid operative. I organized as much as I could before leaving on vacation, but ended up talking to a lot of parents and organizing quite a bit from out of the country. Thank God for everyone on the Dominican side who stepped up and worked their butts off to make it possible!

Hearing aids were given to about 60 Deaf students from three different schools here in the capital. That was such a blessing! Not only were the children blessed by the donations, but now all of those parents know that there is a church here where their Deaf child can see and understand God's Word. Most of these children either do not go to church or attend a hearing church with their parents where they understand exactly 0% of what is being said. I am hoping to get more children in church now! Pray for that as well.

Before heading back to the States, I spent two weeks in Colombia with my Dominican sisters. We went to Bogotá, Medellín, Cartagena, and some smaller towns surrounding those cities. We had such a blast! For anyone who wants an incredible and affordable international vacation, I definitely recommend Colombia. Of course, one has to be careful and aware, but it is no longer the dangerous country that it was.

After two weeks in Colombia, I then spent two weeks in the States with my family and friends. As always, it is so nice to be home-home. I did very little relaxing, as two weeks is not much time to be back and spend sufficient time with everyone, but it was great. It is always hard to leave, but I'm also anxious to get back to work! Quite a bit of stuff accumulated in that month that I was gone!

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