Watch this short video before you continue reading!
It’s culturally appropriate in Peru to have Chocolatadas around Christmas. This is a Christmas party where everyone enjoys panetone, a light sweet fruit cake, and chocolate cliente, hot chocolate. Typically there is a small show or entertainment and often this is for the children. This year we were blessed to hold three such chocolatadas in three different parts of the city. The video you just watched is from our chocolatada in La Victoria where our Mercy House is located. We had children and mothers both there for the event. They heard the story of Jesus birth, got to meet a Santa who pointed to Christ as the reason for celebration. They got to sing Christmas songs which take home the message of our Savior. And of course, they enjoyed panetone, chocolate caliente, and Christmas presents.
We also held chocolatadas in San Borja and Los Olivos. These events both reached out more to the adults of the communities. We joined in singing everyone’s favorite Christmas hymns, Pastor shared a Christmas message and we showed a video made by the LCMS in Latin America that puts a little twist on the Christmas story. The short movie asks you to think about what it would be like if Christ had not been born 2,000 years ago in Bethlehem but had been born in modern day Latin America. Set in Panama the actors give you a first hand picture of the trails that Mary endured and help us to understand what the birth of Jesus might really have been like. The video is in Spanish but the words are very few throughout the movie and its worth the time to watch. Even if you don’t know any Spanish you know the story and you’ll understand. A Merry Christmas to all from Peru!