Photo: A Quechua (or Kichua) Indian woman at the market
in Otavalo, Ecuador.
Today, we began our work in the village of Cachimuel.
The community there has rebuilt the roof of their church and added a new room for children above their "foyer." Our job, over the next few days, will be to sand the walls, paint, scrape and clean the windows, and do a few other odds and ends.
So, for a couple of hours today, we scraped and sanded. Nothing too hard, but dusty, dirty, thirsty kind of work for our merry, weary band of travelers.
As we left for the day, a Quechua woman from the community was squatted outside the doors of the church. She had a big, banged-up aluminum pot of warm water.
As each of us walked out of the church, she motioned for us to bend down beside her. And -- gently, kindly, smilingly, graciously -- she dipped warm water out and poured it over our hands.
"...Jesus got up from the table, took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself.
Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet..."
- The Gospel of John, Chapter 13, Verses 4 & 5 -