I'm still a "Hermit" and following the Lord as He leads. My first Calling is to pray. From there I try to live the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy as taught in the Church. The poor and the orphans are very much a part of my work here in the "City of Eternal Spring."
The little business card has my address on it for those who want to drop me a line. Mail is improving. The longest for mail to arrive was 33 days, the shortest was 11 days. Do not use Air Mail stamps. Just a regular stamp is okay as they each get here at the same time. The business card has the daily hours...10 a.m to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. We offer a meal, a shower, a change of clothes and a short nap on something much softer than the street or a ditch. I cannot pass out my business cards to the Churches, etc., until I have my pantry filled with at least two months of food. So far, I have it only 1/4 full. I too eat from this pantry. It is evident I need help to stock "Elijah's Cannister." Read 1Kings, Chap. 17, verses 12-17 in the Old Testament. Netarts Friends (church in Netarts, Oregon) "Elijah's Barrel" in their Church Foyer. That's how I got the idea to give mine the same name...which in Spanish is "La Tinaja De Elisha,"--a "tinaja" is an earthenware cannister for flour.
My sister Marcella is still my right hand in handling my finances when I receive gifts. Do not send checks to me directly, because it costs $40.00 American to get it cashed...(only send them to her to handle). Thank you in advance for your love and concern for the poor...me included.
It would please me a great deal to be able to take off and visit the Family in the States. If I cannot afford toilet paper at times, for sure I cannot spring for a ticket home. However, I put my reservation in with the Lord for my 70th Birthday...in three years...God willing, and my health holds out. All is in the hands of God! For example, I just gave a party with nothing to put on the table. I invited many friends to my 67th birthday and also included a celebration of all my orphaned Godchildren...Erika 16, Jovani with AIDS, 14, and Jonathan 12. To make a long story short the juice drink arrived the night before...only had two chickens for nine people...more were arriving...a friend put up some balloons...held a summit meeting with two friends...one volunteered to lend me the money for three more chickens, rice and tortillas...God be praised...at 2 p.m. a delicious big portion of fancy rice arrived and a guacamole salad--mmmm! The best beans (frijoles) arrived made with Chorizo, a Mexican sausage...also we had giant chips and Mexican Salsa...and last but not least the cake arrived. It is called F A I T H ... and D I V I N E P R O V I D E N C E! We had 17 guests and ten drop-ins, many of whom brought gifts for the crowd...familiar story! Father Ferguson from the Episcopal Church in Tillamook, Oregon, once sent me a card of encouragement that had "One plus God is a majority!" And I look at it many times when I am in a jam.
Not every day is a good day here for me or for other missionaries of your denomination...be a Father Ray and brighten up a missionary's day! Not belonging to a formed group that assists their missionaries, I have only my Social Security benefits for me and my poor friends. The Bible did not say "Go with your group," just "Go!" So I went!
My dear family and friends, let me take this opportunity to give all of you who have helped me from day one with the House of Hope to the Spirit of Love House to the Little House of Love in N.J. to Isaiah 58 House in Portland, Oregon...to this little precious House of the Embrace of God in Cuernavaca, Mexico--my DEEPEST THANKS...which I express much better in my prayers for you. Only in Heaven will you each know of my daily prayers for you by name. You might be surprised. I forget no one. My prayer lists begin from my first year in school up to today. My loving benefactors, old and new, my thanksgiving to you continues in my prayers every day of my life. I love you and I thank you. I hope this isn't my last newsletter, but if it is, please remember me in your prayers too (for real).
Tomorrow I am going to the Graduation Ceremony of Erika, my Godchild. I had no money for transportation, no gift, just somne photos for her, and I left it up to God Who loves His orphans. I'm going in a Volkswagen--yikes! It will take two people to pry me out! And I have a beautiful purse I got for my birthday and I won't have time to become attached to it. A perfect gift for a 16 year old! God is soooo kind to me. Don't you just love Him? Only God can make use of an old broken clay pot sinner like me, and I'm graciously delighted He does. ABRAZOS (HUGS) AND BESITOS (KISSES), believing and happy in Mexico serving the Lord with gladness, Mary-Constance P.S. Jesus is Lord!