Missionary Dan Vallette reports on the changes going on in their plans these days:
As you are well aware, COVID has changed all our plans many times and it will continue to do so. Here are some COVID-related changes in our ministry so you can get a better picture of what has happened and what is still to come.
Change #1: Chile Camps 2020. In March of 2020, COVID was in full effect in Chile. Curfew and stay-at-home orders were issued and enforced by the government. This forced us to cancel not only national but international work teams and retreats at the camp, as well as the rest of the camps year’s activity. Travel within the country was restricted and monitored. We were saddened not only by the lost opportunities to minister, but also for the standstill of the construction projects of the camp.
Change #2: Work teams. The original plan during the month of May 2020 was to host a work team from Northern Ireland to help us build a rock fire pit and the corresponding seating to go along the fire pit. This trip was planned two years in advance; we appreciate the effort the team put into organizing this trip, we hope to reschedule some other time. A work team from Pennsylvania scheduled for October had to postpone until 2021.
Change #3: Our stay in the United States. Our family left Chile in June for the purpose of our daughter beginning her university studies. We were to return to Chile in July. Due to COVID restrictions, we extended our stay until August. During August, we consulted with our home church and field leadership and felt that we should go ahead and take our furlough now. We will return to Chile in July of 2021. We are thankful for the extended furlough that gave us the opportunity to help our kids during this time.
Change #4: Summer of 2021 in Chile. Early in November we had to cancel our summer camps due to COVID restrictions from the government. The number of people that were allowed to gather and the social distance that was required by the government made camp impossible to operate effectively. We were saddened, once again, for the missed opportunities to minister this summer (January and February) to campers and staff.
Change #5: Dan’s trip in to Chile. Once again the original plan for Dan’s short trip in February 2021 was to have some work teams of volunteers from different churches of the Santiago area complete some projects during his time in Chile. At the time that plans were made and tickets purchased all indicated that we could host this modified summer activity. Now, due to new COVID restrictions we may not be able to have an organized work activity (there is a 10 day in house quarantine awaiting him in Chile upon arrival).
Change #6: Return to Chile 2021. Our current return date is early July. We have family, churches and supporters that we need to visit in June. The plan is to return to Chile, this time, without children. It will be a new stage for us in the dynamics of our ministry due to the important role that our children have played in the ministry all these years.
We want to thank you once again for your prayers, interest and donations for us and the Pirque Bible Camp ministry. Looking forward to see what our Lord has in store for us this year. Thank you once again for your prayers.