Saturday, April 11, 2015

And the 2015 Corn Harvest Begins

And the harvest begins in Amatongas, only two months later than usual due to the late rainy season. Soon we will be able to grind our own corn into flour instead of buying 50kgs in town every day. Our wonderful boarders helped fill two trailer loads today beginning work at 5:00 AM. 

We give a huge shout out saying thank you to our brothers, students, teachers and friends at Saint Stanislaus High School in Bay St. Louis, MS who raised funds during lent to help us purchase corn flour during these first two very difficult months of the school year.

Cutting and collecting the corn stalks

Stripping the corn

Loading into the trailer

Bagging te corn to be lifted into the loft

Filling the loft

And we always have interested audiences

Sunday, April 5, 2015

16 Residents Baptized at Easter Vigil

Sixteen resident students were baptized at our Easter Vigil last night. It only took 4 1/2 hours, but we got it done. Happy Easter from all of us in Amatongas!

Each of the brothers sponsored at least two students, some had four

Br. Lucas assists at the baptism

Salvador gets annointed

The newly baptized with their candles

Our 16 resident students dressed in their best for the vigil

Cows Finally Arrive in Amatongas

The two year wait has finally ended. Our 5 new jersey cows and 1 bull arrived in Amatongas. A huge thanks to the efforts of all the students, faculty, administration and friends at Brother Martin High School in New Orleans for raising the funds to build the barn and pay for the cows. Because of you, our dream of self-sustainability is closer to reality.

Land O Lakes delivers the cows

Jersey cows enjoying their new home

They came 5-7 months pregnant, so milk shouldn't be too far away

The young bull seems to happy as well

I wonder how long our kids will be able to play with they young bull

Each jersey cow is tagged and comes with registration

Our First Candidates in Amatongas

Could these young men be the first Mozambican Brothers of the Sacred Heart? It has been great welcoming the first 3 discerners to our community in Amatongas. They will begin their official formation as Aspirants in June and they will travel to Zimbabwe to begin the program with other young men from the area. If all goes well they will become postulants and then begin their novitiate in Lusaka, Zambia. Please keep our three discerners in your prayers as they begin their formation.

The first three discerners, Micheque, Carlitos, and Eurico




Micheque with formation director, Br. Lucas

Kitchen Cooking with Gas, Again

I made a post last year about our kitchen cooking with gas. However, due to some pressure problems we had to abandon the gas and return to cooking over firewood. We are happy to announce now that we have returned to gas full time. It seems like a simple thing, but believe me, it's not so simple.

Once again we thank all those at Manos Unidas for making our kitchen a reality. Now we just have to find a way to pay for the gas. It cost bout $100 for one of the big canisters and we go through about 3 a week.

Our cooks love not having to make a fire everyday

Frying fish is much easier over the burner

The simple pressure valve that made it possible, just couldn't find one last year

Madalena and Ana Paula, the women that make it all happen

Another School Year Begins in Amatongas

I realized recently that have been posting many pictures on facebook and some people don't use facebook. So, for various reasons, one being historical archive purposes, I'm posting all the stuff I uploaded on facebook recently to this blog.

The beginning of the school year in Amatongas has seen many differences from the past two years. Over 1,200 students began the year with 120 resident students. The increased numbers are due in part to the reputation of the school, but also because of the governments decision to cancel our night school. The reasons for this are too difficult to go into detail here, but it is unfortunate for the students who work all day and don't have the opportunity to go to school at night. However, for the brothers at least it gives us a little break in the busy schedule.

One change you immediately notice this year is the increased presence of students and teachers around the school all day. Students and teachers seem to be taking education more seriously.

Students check out books all day from the library

Students in class hard at work

The classrooms are looking great

The school is a buzz of activity all day

The library stays packed all day with students studying