The first Tuesday of each month, we gather the young leaders of the Mission for a Leaders' Council here in Huancayo.
For those in the distant cities, this involves significant travel and time away from their work. We talk about things that are important to the leaders and their missionaries, and make decisions and plans.
As they often miss all or part of their preparation day because of their additional duties, we usually have several hours of an activity afterward. OK, this is South America, sooooo.....
Fútbol! We rent a local covered cancha, and let them loose.
When I was bishop, a third of our congregation was Hispanic, and I loved to watch them play soccer, er, fútbol. I used to say that when I would deliver a Hispanic baby, often a little soccer ball would come out after the kid; they seem to be born playing.
There are several North American missionaries who are very talented, but many didn't play a lot until they came to Peru.
At present, our faithful office staff consists of a Chilean, an Argentinan, and four gringos.
For the February Mission Leader Council, they formed one of the teams. I happened to overhear their game plan:
Sadly, that plan didn't bear excessive fruit, so another was devised. Stealing "The Flying V" from a Disney movie about ice hockey, they scored!
I'm not sure whether it was due to the unusual formation, upon which the Hispanic Elders looked with bemused astonishment, or their general enthusiasm.
Meanwhile, the Sisters went to a local restaurant with Paula, then had a relaxed chat at the Mission Home.
We love and appreciate all of our missionaries, and we especially recognize the hard work and sacrifice of the leaders on behalf of the Mission.
We hope all your fútbol strategies are likewise successful.
Dave & Paula