Update from Bride

27th November 2022
Greetings from Capim Grosso where the biggest news is that it is raining. It has been very hot, in the low 30s but now with the rain it is cooler. There was a ferocious thunder and lightning storm last night, a rare occurrence. I had a lovely week’s retreat last week; it was given by an American Sister who used to be my spiritual director when I lived in Capim Grosso, so it was a great joy to be able to link up with her again. She focused a lot on the Beatitudes and this was very pertinent in the midst of so many situations of poverty and struggle.
I attended a meeting of a local Association of small farmers whom I supported many years ago. It was good to see many new faces I hadn’t met before and to see how the Association is developing. In the early days the older members got land which was donated for landless families to work on. Nowadays young people are less interested in working on the land, in semi-desert conditions, and so that poses new challenges to the Association to see how they can meet the needs of today’s youth.
I returned to Umburanas to complete the work on hands. The biggest news item was of course that Brazil was playing Switzerland in the World Cup. Everything was closed down including the project. One of the teachers invited us to her house for lunch and to watch the match. What joy that goal brought them!! I still cannot get used to the changed visual scene of the town of Umburanas. Four years ago, a multi-national Wind Farm Co came here and erected over 80 wind towers out in the deserted hills around Umburanas. The result is that this project has brought 3,000 men to the town, with various skills required for this kind of work. Many local people have got employment in low-skilled jobs. The town is full of cars and trucks everywhere and at night the buzz everywhere is like Temple Bar!! This – in what was a sleepy town where no one was on the streets after 9.00 pm! I have opted not to drive here as I haven’t the courage. As one man said to me: There are no rules of the road here, everyone just drives everywhere and no such thing as a one-way street. While all the employment and increased business is very good for the local economy, unfortunately there is also another side to this development. It seems that 4 houses of prostitution have sprung up in recent times, and consequently, a big increase in the number of young teenagers pregnant.
I am just about half way through my journey now. It is amazing how I seemed to have plenty of time in the planning stage, but now I find there is never enough time anywhere!
Please keep me in your prayer in the coming weeks and I will remember you in mine
Love and Blessings Bride