Other photos of this trip are available on the following pages: first, second, third (next page), fourth, fifth, sixth.
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Laura and Richard's 2006 trip to Guatemala, page 2

Laura and I are in Aguacatán, Guatemala, now. We will be here until 2006-11-16 (when we plan to go to San Francisco El Alto in Totonicapán). We have been through Canillá, San Andres Sajcabajá, Sacapulas and Nebaj. We have had some wonderful and emotional visits with the loved ones of our Guatemalan friends in Ohio. We have also learned that Laura cannot walk more than a block in Canillá, Nebaj or Aguacatán without a chance encounter with someone she knows who lived in Dover or New Philadelphia. It is really quite remarkable how she is engrained into the community.

I am happy to share some photos of our visits. I am glad to report that we are well, and let everyone know who we have been able to visit. Of course, we will have more photos to share over Thanksgiving. The background art is from a poncho made by the family of Andrés, including his mother, Catarina. They are from Aldea Salvaj, Nebaj, El Quiche.

Here is a group photo of the families of Andrés, Raymundo, Pedro, Santiago and Maria Isabel, all from Aldea Salvaj, Nebaj:

Petronil's family in Canillá. In addition to their own children, they adopted two other children.

A surprise meeting with Margarita Rosales in Canillá. She no longer works for the library. Now she works for a children's rights organization.

Laura noticed this photo hanging in the church's internet store in Nebaj. The banner says, "for the truth, justice, forgiveness, reconciliation and peace." The church in Nebaj is participating in a process to document the effects and losses of the civil war through 4,000 interviews. This is the same kind of documentation that was used by the Archdiocese to compile Guatemala: Nunca Mas (Never Again), the report for which Bishop Juan Gerardi was assasinated.

Nota de Laura

13 de noviembre - Tuvimos visitas muy alegras en Nebaj. Las familias de los de Nebaj fueron muy generosas. Visitabamos, comemos juntos y ellos estan mandando mucho saludos para sus amados en Ohio. Fuimos en una reunion con 60 lideres que estan preparando de hacer mas intervistas sobre la sufriamento de los pobres en la guerra. Padre Rigo tieno una meta de lograr mas justicia y mas paz en las communidades cerca de Nebaj. Tenemos mucho respeto por sus luchas. En Aguacatán visitamos con la familia de Santa Perez. Fue 250 personas de su communidad de ella esperando para nosotros ayer noche. Una grupo de jovenes cantaron para nosotros y nosotros cenamos con mucho alegria. Padre Jose David esta luchando para recoger fundos para una estacion de radio. Durante la votacion pasada fue conflictos gravos aqui y el quisiera influencer la gente de actuar en paz por la proxima votacion.

November 13th. We had wonderful visits in Nebaj with families who were so generous. We visited, ate together and they are sending many salutations to their loved ones in Ohio. We went to a reunion of leaders preparing to do more interviews concerning the suffering of the poor during the war. Padre Rigo has an important goal of achieving more justice and peace in the communities near to Nebaj. we have alot of respect for their efforts. In Aguacatán we visited with Santa Perez' family. Over 250 people came to the church to welcome us. A lovely youth group sang for us and we ate together with great joy. Father Jose David is struggling to raise funds to have a radio station. During the last election they suffered armed conflict here and he is hoping to influence people to act in more peaceful ways during the election coming next year.

Click here for 2004 photos of Canilla
Click here for photos of the Pop Wuj Estufa Project
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Other photos of this trip are available on the following pages: first, second, third (next page), fourth, fifth, sixth.

Dated 2006-11-18
Copyright 2006 Richard Renner
All rights reserved.