|Everywhere in Maligcong were signs of the harvest. Just outside the church this lady was drying sheaves of rice called palay.|
By the time we finally arrived at the end of the road in Maligcong where we could begin the hike to Fang-orao, we were already late. We kept a good pace hiking through the magnificence of the Maligcong rice terraces and once we were on the branch of the mountain with Fang-orao, Pastor Frederick asked if we were up to taking the shortcut. In Ilocano, as in many cultures, you pronounce the word "shortcut" as "adventure". At first it seemed pretty simple, the path went from an 18" wide concrete path on the top of a rice terrace wall to a 10" dirt path on the top of a rice terrace wall. Soon it became a 4-6" muddy, wet, and slippery concrete path on the top of a rice terrace wall. Good practice for balance. We only had one person slip so much that their foot found its way into the squishy mud of the rice field. Fortunately it was in a place where both sides were near the height of the path and not a 5' drop. Then we came to the place where we needed to climb the "stairs" up toward the church. In this case, the translation of "stairs" is "steep, moist, red clay embankment with precarious footholds". No injuries, no ruined clothes (brown pants are key), and no words of complaint. I am not sure which is the greatest of these.
When we arrived, Sunday School was nearly completed and soon the worship service began. A guitar, a bass guitar, a few tambourines, and a set of drums accompanied the upbeat mix of English and native worship songs.
|Rita is the name of the lady on the right. She was apparently listening with her heart, as well as her ears.|
|I love this picture. Before closing, I asked if anyone had any questions, observations, or thoughts to share. This dear lady was more bold than most and willingly shared some great insights.|
|Praying with Rita, Dominga tanslating|
|Rita proclaiming her new faith to the congregation, accompanied by a friend for encouragement.|
|The Fang-orao branch of Maligcong Christian Fellowship - with a few Americanos thrown in for the fun of it.|
|Alayna loves going to villages because she gets to hold babies.|
|Reviewing the stories that Adriana, Alexie, Alayna, and Annalise taught to the children.|
Peeking through the pew