A Cultural Sidenote (1)

We are slowly getting used to church here in Portugal. First of all, a good week’s attendance is 8 Portuguese attendees plus the 10 missionaries. Secondly, the greeting isn’t “Hello” plus a hug if you know someone well; it’s Boa Tardi (Good Afternoon since church starts before dark) and “air kisses” by each cheek.  Older women are addressed with Dona followed by their name. For example, ‘Grandma Brautigam’ from our home church, would be called ‘Dona Edna.’  Most of the songs we sing we recognize as choruses we sang at church during the 70’s and 80’s. A typical service lasts about 2 hours and includes singing, reading of several passages of scripture to help you reflect on aspects of the songs we are singing, a praise/thankful time, a  greeting  and offering time, a prayer request + prayer time, and the message or teaching time. Sometimes someone will bring a snack to share at the end. We purchased a Portuguese Bible this week so we can follow along as they read. Once I get the power cord for my keyboard, I will begin practicing so I can take turns accompanying  the song time.

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