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Conversations with Pedro

Pedro Membreno a close friend from our sister community Valle Nuevo in El Salvador a few weeks ago spend several hundred dollars extra to stop and visit us and friends in Chicago on his way to DC from El Salvador. I was humbled that he thought a visit here was that important to spend his hard earned money that way. We collected some money to help with his travel, and he mentioned that he would be sending the money to his wife who was left without any cash because they needed all the cash they had to show immigration.
In the picture above on the left is Pedro Membreno out with the strawberry picking crew I manage one morning of his visit. Our farm had a bumper crop this year. I am the one wearing the suspenders.

In one time of sharing Pedro mentioned, “Our one son has been drinking and it was causing a lot of worry and anxiety for my wife Angelina. We learned from the church that it was important for families to pray together daily, and since the children were little we have done that. But they have to make their own decisions, and so we just have to keep praying for them and hope they will remember that and turn to God for help.”

I said, “Sometimes things have to get really bad before we will say I give up and turn to God.” This long history of family praying was a side of Pedro’s life I was pleasantly surprise to learn about. One of the results of suffering it does get us on our knees. This moment of recognizing our common belief in prayer was special.
At another point in the conversation Pedro remembered, “You know when we were in the midst of the El Salvadoran civil war and we were living with danger and suffering every day, we thought the war would never end. But here we are today, the war has ended and things are a lot better. How we need to keep up our prayers for peace, even though we feel no one is listening, God is listening.” This felt like a word from the Lord for us today in light of the present situation of seemingly endless war and suffering everywhere.

Lord help us not to lose hope!

On another note, I am gathering people who are interested in being part of our annual visit to Valle Nuevo. This visit is to build friendships and to be thankful with them to God for his protecting them in 1981 when they escaped into Honduras while the Army was shooting at them. They see it as a miracle in that only a few people lost their lives. It is always an enriching experience to be with the people of Valle Nuevo. If you might be interested in being part of the delegation and would like to know more let me know and you might want to read the long report about the last visit below.


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