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Photo at Left:
From Left to Right:  Jose
Ortiz
and Steve Parelli of
Other Sheep;
Ruben
Villaverde
of Mendoza,
Argentina, former Baptist
pastor of Pueblo Nuevo.
Crossing the Andes into Chile - Our Trip from Mendoza,
Argentina, to Santiago, Chile.
__________________________________

The pass across the Andes had been closed for days prior to our
arrival in Mendoza, Argentina (it was their winter!).  The only sure
way to Chile was to fly over the Andes.  The Chilean airline, LAN,
sold us tickets with the promise of a full refund if the pass were to
open.  We purchased our tickets three days in advance for a
Sunday morning flight - -  having a speaking engagement for that
Sunday evening.  To our delight, the pass opened early Saturday
morning.  Ruben rushed us to the bus terminal.   We began our
journey into Chile. (In Santeago, LAN refunded us for the tickets!)

Below are some of the fantastic photos we made of the Andes.  
Because we traveled westward and early in the day, the sun was to
our back, lighting everything before us.
Just weeks before our arrival in Buenos Aires, Ruben Villaverde, the pastor of Pueblo Nuevo,
a Baptist church of 500 members, Mendoza, Argentina, resigned, openly coming out to
his congregation.  He had founded and pastored the church for more than 11 years.

Our two-day visit with Ruben in Mendoza, Argentina, was a time of support and
understanding.  
Steve was himself a Baptist minister when he came out and left the pastorate
in 1997.  
Jose's undergraduate studies at Columbia Bible College had prepared him for
ministry -- which he postponed while attempting to change his sexual orientation.   
Other
Sheep
, among other objectives, purposes to minister to men like Ruben who are gay and
called to ministry.  During the year before his coming out, Ruben had been in touch with
Tom
Hanks
and Other Sheep in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
At Left
and
Below
:  
Jose at
our
Youth
Hostel
where
we
lodged
Above Photo:  Steve at the
Argentina-Chile border.  
Photo at Left:  Jose and
Steve on the bus crossing
the Andes.
A Mendoza,
Argentina,
winery and
area vineyards
Aregentinian
national emblem
in Independence
Plaza of
Mendoza,
Argentina
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Ruben spent most
of the two days with
us.  He met us upon
our arrival; helped
us settle in at a
hostel; took us to
the best
restaurants; gave
us a driving tour of
the area; assisted
us in shopping at a
local mall;
introducied us to a
vinery tour; and
finally saw us off.
Mendoza, Argentina  July 27-29,
2006
Supporting a Coming-Out
Pastor
Eduardo Ruben Villaverde, Pastor
Our first view of the Andes:
This was our view from our bus window as
we arrived in Mendoza, Argentina, the
morning of July 27, 2006.
Ruben Villaverde
Our Two Day Visit in
Mendoza
______________________________________
See below for Our
Crossing of the
Andes, July 29,2006