Saturday, August 2, 2008

Travel Mercies


Yesterday I posted prayer and praise with two requests for travel mercies, Mike and Colin's trip to Andahuaylas and Becky's trip to Arequipa.

These are not "form" requests. Travel in Peru, as on many mission fields, is far more dangerous than travel in the United States. This is why we really do want your prayers.

The dangers of travel have become alarmingly evident in the past few weeks here. The newspaper page reproduced here from the newspaper El Comercio shows the latest in a wave of fatal head on bus crashes that have shocked Peru and left the people demanding reform and accountability.

In the last 11 days 84 people have been killed in these crashes, and hundreds injured. So far this year 291 have died and 2,777 have been injured in 930 accidents. The main problem is excessive speed and recklessness on the part of the drivers as they try to stay on schedule. This is of course related to the lack of law enforcement on the highways, which are mainly traveled by bus, as few drive or have cars.

Most of these accidents have occurred on the Panamerican Highway, probably the best road in Peru, (comparable to US interstate) and certainly considered one of the safest to travel. These are places that we have been countless times, which of course makes it scarier than if it was buses falling off the road in isolated jungle areas.

In fact, I remember one time travelling down the Panamericana on a bus in the fog. It was just me and Chris, so I was feeling extra watchful. As we raced along the coastal cliffs, I thought that the driver must know the road very well, as he couldn't possibly see it. The other passengers were not alarmed, because as they don't drive, they don't understand the danger. I certainly prayed a lot!

So do please pray for safety in travel.