05 March 2007

tHe eArTh iS tHe LoRd'S...


today, instead of being me suggesting the signs, I asked God to give me a sign as I heard the words of Abraham at Mass on Sunday saying :” Sovereign LORD, how can I know that I will gain possession it (the promissed land)?"
...and this word came to me after that :
“The word of the LORD came to me: "What do you see, Jeremiah?"
"I see the branch of an almond tree," I replied.
The LORD said to me, "You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled." (Jer1:11,12)
And what do I see right in front of the house, this branch of almond, beautifully blooming :-) !!!!

WE ARE BUYING THE LAND, and we need to raise 35.000 Euros...
We’ll make it in a symbolic way that PEOPLE WOULD BUY METER SQUARES OF THE LAND, and EACH METER SQUARE WILL COST 7E, so we can reach the 35.000E...Does that makes sense for you guys? I just thought it would make it easier :-) like the tree campaign... by the way, I'll start planting the trees next week :-)

THE LAND WILL STAY UNDER "WHITE STONE”, an Association me and some friends from the “Matrix” created in Lisbon specially to develop different social activities and to have a legal registration to start projects like this, both in the city and in the countryside.
So, whoever wants can also be a member of this association and take part in every big decision making about the land... For those who want we can also provide a receipt for the donations that can be deductible in your taxes... I will have to find better how that works...

WE HAVE A DEAD LINE THOUGH, THE 15TH OF MARCH!!!! YES, 10 DAYS FROM NOW !!!!
I can send the bank details from White Stone for those who are interested...

O.k, now this is only for those who don't know anything about the land and the vision for it... be free to ask more questions...

ABOUT THE LAND :

The land is in Povoa de Atalaia, in “Castelo Branco” district, next to Spain and between Porto and Lisbon with beautiful mountains surrounding it...
It has 5000 meter square, on a hill with 9 layers and with lots of sun, with a running stream of a small river, about 50 Olive trees with good olives to eat and make lots of olive oil (we can harvest more than a ton of olives each year), 2 small forests with oaks, mimosas, few eucalyptus and few pines, there are also few cork oaks and few almond trees, different mandarine trees, a natural spring water (drinkable), a big dam which is more like a small lake and a smaller dam, still big enough for a lot of water, for washing and plants... There’s also a kind of pool, or tank that we can fill in the hot summer for swimming... We need a lot of water pipes everywhere though... Yes, there’s still a lot of work to be done... We have a small stone house which was repaired and reformed by Edi, Jo and Miri, the carpenters who came here to help and serve. We use this for our common kitchen and dinning room and they also built another wooden house, started by Sven, which is our store room for tools (now working as shower place) and our first guest room for 2 beds :-)

THE VISION FOR THE COMMUNITY:

The idea is to first build the essential structures for people to come and stay, like little houses, compost toilets and shower places...
But even without all that we’ve been staying here for almost 4 months, living in tents, buses, having a shit pit for toilet and a fire bath for bathing under the stars :-)... We had already different seasons with different amounts of people who come and go...we are now 3 (with some more about to come), but we were mostly around 12 and for New Year we had around 20 or more, I lost the count :-)

So, this is suppose to be a place for people to come and go in different seasons, but also for those who want to commit for longer time to stay and build a fellowship... We’re all christians now, but we are open for non christians in the future when we have more of a stable community living here ... I see this also as a place where many people will get a different idea of what christianity is simply through living in community with christians who live their faith daily and not religiously... I picture it being more like an organic and natural kind of community... More like an inclusive family home, an not an exclusive community for christians... I believe that it is living together in community (which is not easy at all) that we can best practice the principles Jesus passed on to us, as well as discovering more about ourselves and growing together in a safe place where we can all admit our failures and weaknesses ...and this can already be such a great witness for the world...a big challenge for all of us, and this can be a place for those who want to experience it...

"They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved." (in the Bible - discription of the community of Jesus' first disciples)

that would be my desired picture as a community:-)

But we don’t want to be just inner focused, this place will be a place for people to come and find REST, for those who are tired of their daily routines, those who need a break from the city stressed life, for those who need to have a personal retreat, for the nomads who often need a place like home to come back to, etc... we will not ask money for people to stay, whoever wants to give will give, if they don’t, we’ll be glad to have them as well and serve them the same way as the others...we are living with common money for the basic needs of the community, and so far it works well :-)...we will also not ask anyone to help in the land unless they want... Above all, we want to serve people...
There are also those who want a place where they can serve and help for a while, so we’re glad to receive those as well...

I would also like this land to be a self sufficient farm land in the future, developing a kind of agriculture called permaculture, and for those who never heard about it is a kind of agriculture and community building where people help the land and the land helps people :-)...it’s about having a lot of variety of cultures planted where each one will help the other somehow... And also about taking the best advantage of the natural resources without exploiting them...It takes a while to plan it, but after few years we can have the least work ...
Well, there are many things and ideas we can do in the future, but those are other steps...


We also want to help the villages around us... There’s a lot of hopeless young people who are bored with life, and there’s a lot of old sweet people who feel lonely and useless in this little villages... We find already a lot of favour before people here, and some young people even mention once that we came to bring them Joy :-)...everyone knows us, even people we don’t know, everyone speaks about us and they show their love in many ways...the old people admire us because we are young and still want to work in the land, and young people like us because we are “different” and we join them in their parties...they are also puzzled that we are christians, and we’ve been having cool conversations about that... The Mayer of the Village of Povoa de Atalaia always wants to help and support us, and he is always asking us if we could do anything for the village...he respects us a lot and he consider us people of good who just want to share God’s love... We often attend the mass on Sunday’s and old people really appreciate us for that :-)... So, we are pretty much involved with the people around as well...
But we want to be more though, specially for few cool young people we've been meeting from the city nearby... we would like to hang out more with them and help them to organize concerts and encourage them in their scene here where nothing seems to happen...

Be free to share this with others who might be interested and ask more questions if you have ...

Be blessed, and feel a part of all this already

PEACE
Barbara

"The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it"( Psalm 24:1)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hej! I just read this and belive this is for you, for the people that will hopefully move to the land.And for the old people, getting rich with youth from the nations. This text spoke to me, and I hope it will give hope from God to you. Jesaja61 Love karolin