Exploring Mayan Culture

The sand duneHow do you begin to share your experiences when you are completely speechless? I’m not sure, but I will attempt to do my best. Panajachel was the first place we spent the evening after we landed. We shopped and ate. I aided in percussion with the Pana Rock Café’s live music that evening.

The following morning we boarded a chicken bus to Quetzeltenango. We joined in a Mayan ceremony, which was extremely emotional and humbling. The Mayan cultural practices and prayer come directly from the heart and is very personal.

The AMA is a group of amazing people that are leading us in this journey of transformation.  We were able to join a class of students whom the Mayan priest from the ceremony that morning was the same man that served as their professor that afternoon. We ate again and enjoyed a class about Ladinos and Mayans and cultural sensitivity.

We built stoves in the homes in the Mayan community. I actually used a machete to cut and chisel the block. The stoves will not only serve for cooking but as an effort to reduce the respiratory symptoms associated with breathing in the soot from the fire in the center of your living room.

I am so exited for tomorrow. More tears will be shed and layers peeled from my heart. I love this place.

By Amy Gordon

Students at the Rutgers School of Nursing-Camden are spending their spring break on a service learning trip in Guatemala. Throughout the week, they will be blogging about their experiences.



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