May 2020 - Duryee Family Quarantine Edition
Two Months in Isolation
We've spent over two months in isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the Spanish population. In our province of Madrid, the hardest hit in Spain, there have been 67,000 cases, nearly 9,000 deaths, and a lot of chaos and fear in hospitals. We know a few people who contracted the virus and we praise God that all of them are well now. It was very scary for a while, and we are taking the rules seriously, doing our part to protect a vulnerable population. Thankfully, field hospitals have closed, cases continue to drop, and people are feeling hopeful. Tomorrow we enter phase 1 of the deescalation process, which means we can travel in our car together as a family and gather in groups smaller than 10. Thank YOU for praying for us in these interesting circumstances. Below we share some points of prayer and praise.
Since our quarantine began on March 14, we have taken advantage of a lot of family time. Susanna and Austin have distance learning activities and video calls 4 days a week, we read a lot of books, watch a lot of TV, play games, and enjoy meals together on a Spanish schedule (late, big lunch and late, small dinner).
We have been participating in church, prayer meeting, and Bible study via Zoom calls, but, to be perfectly honest, this has been challenging for both Chris and Rose. Fellowship is the purpose of church, and we find it nearly impossible over Zoom, in our second language. So that element of our ministry lives is quite discouraging.
I (Rosalie) have been blogging occasionally at our website, theduryees.com.
While it's not OUR favorite, God is at work through the increase in Internet church. Our Spanish pastor, Miguel Angel, says that many people are listening to his sermons online and engaging him in chats and theological discussions. People seem more open to talk about spiritual things and, as always, a conversation about government control can pave the way for talking about the Gospel.
A major area of prayer for our family is that during these two+ months, we all feel that we have lost progress made in language learning, community building, and even passion for Spain and its people. When things go back to "normal," or whatever the new normal will look like, we feel like we will be repeating the steps of our move, which is daunting.
Trades of Hope
The Lord has given me an opportunity with all this free time to start a small business with Trades of Hope, a fair trade company that empowers women all over the world through sustainable business. We partner with artisans in 18 countries to empower communities out of poverty, enable women to keep their babies, and provide safety for people escaping trafficking. Visit my site to shop and empower, or contact me about a party to earn free goods for yourself. I'm also thrilled to offer parties as a fundraising tool! I just donated over $400 to a missionary with whom we went to language school!