Pictures from Peru

(September 28 through October 2009)

On September 28, I departed for Peru with a delegation of ten people - five from Monroe and Sultan, three from Holy Family, Seattle, and a married couple from Queen of Angels, Port Angeles, WA. The visit has gone very well. We spent our first two days at the mother house of the Vincentian Daughters of Charity in Lima. We had the opportunity to meet some of the orphan children they care for. Below is a picture of St. Mary of the Valley (Monroe, WA) parishioner Tom Morgan wielding a jump rope for four children. Also we visited the shrines of St. Rose of Lima and St. Martin de Porres. There we prayed for members of our families and other for whom we care and love. I prayed especially for the needs of all parishioners of St. Mary of the Valley. We had the privilege of celebrating Mass at the tomb of St. Martin de Porres. Below is a picture of our delegation after that Mass.

Our largest block of time - about six days - was spent in Puno at the Mary Bloom Center and the orphanage of the Vincentian Daughters of Charity. Besides the time with the orphan girls, we had the opportunity to visit families assisted by the Mary Bloom Center. Particularly moving was a boy named Diego, in danger of losing his eyesight. Michelle Palmer, a St. Mary parishioner who is a nurse at Children's Hospital in Seattle, examined his eyes and said she is concerned that Diego receive immediate treatment. Obst. Luz Marron (director of the Mary Bloom Center, at my right in the picture) has set up an appointment for Diego with a local opthamologist and is making plans to take him to Arequipa where he can receive specialized treatment. I will keep you informed about Diego.

Two wonderful young adults formed part of our delegation. Julia Larsen, a U of W graduate whose family lives in Sultan, helped with interpreting from Spanish to English. A very lovely young lady, she turned many heads here in Peru. For different reasons, Aaron Howard turned heads. Tall and thin, he looks like young version of Abraham Lincoln, towering above the people here. Aaron will accompany me during my entire stay until November 5. An excellent photographer, I hope that you will have a chance to see some of his pictures. Please keep our delegation in your prayers, as we remember you at daily Mass and at the sacred spots here in Peru.

Mass at Tomb of St. Martin de Porres, Sept 29

at St. Rose's well. L-R: Pressy, Julia, Aaron, Ines, Leah, Annie, Gaye, Michelle, Fr. Phil Bloom, Tom

Michelle, Julia and Gaye praying at "Señor de los Milagros"

with orphan children at Hogar Aurora in Lurin (near Lima) Sept 30

Tom Morgan with jump rope; his wife, Leah, and Sister Fresia looking on

Marisol (13-year-old girl with lung disease) her parents Anita & Feliciano, Puno, October 2

Inside Marisol's home. L-R: Leah, Nancy, Dan, Tom, Fr. Bloom, Aaron, Marisol, Anita, Feliciano, Michelle, (below) Ines, Pressy, Gaye and Julia

With Diego (a boy in danger of losing his eyesight)

Outing to Floating Islands on Lake Titicaca, Guide (Rene) explaining the shape of lake - outline of rabbit on southern end, October 3

Gaye and Lourdes on front of reed boat

Dan O'Rourke showing children how to use fishing rod

Tom, Sandra & Annie

Delegation with orphan girls, Mary Bloom volunteers and residents of Santa Maria floating island

Julia and local lady in native dress

On boat with children (sunscreen not yet absorbed)

At Ilave Parish Library - renovated and supplied with help from St. John's Parish in Seattle, October 4

After Mass in Ilave, with seminarians aided by Stanwood/Camano Knights of Columbus (stole is a gift from seminarians)

Dan and me, with Pedro Ticona, catechist administrator of Santa Rosa, Mazo Cruz (mission of Ilave parish)

After prayer for Justina, also in picture: her husband, Simon, her daughters, sons-in-law and grandchildren. (The delegation took up a collections of about $130 to purchase colostomy bags for Justina.) Pilcuyo, mission of Ilave.

Distribution of Toys and Clothes at Mary Bloom Center, October 5:

A delegation of ten people accompanied me from September 28 to October 9. One of the highlights of the visit took place on October 5, when we had a gathering that included children and parents from the poorer areas of Puno. Knowing that the prayers of the poor have special power, as part of the gathering I anointed St. Mary parishioner Leah Morgan, along with three children suffering from chronic conditions. After Leah and the children received the sacrament, my acolyte Aaron Howard also requested the anointing. Then many of the parents came forward, some suffering from long-term ailments.

The anointing of the sick aptly symbolizes the work of the Mary Bloom Center. Founded in 1994, the Center strives to heal and strengthen marriages, families and those who have lost hope because of poverty combined with some unexpected catastrophe. Next week I will tell you about some specific families.

This week I would like to leave you with more joyful pictures. After the anointing of the sick, we distributed some toys and clothes donated by children of Holy Family School. Below are pictures of delegation members at the distribution of toys and clothing to needy children.



Annie with Marisol (see above)



Gaye ("Alegria")


Pressy with Diego (see above)





With Sandra and Nancy (director of Bob Lindenau Tutoring Program)

Farewell from girls at Puno orphanage, Oct 6

Orphanage at Lurin (Hogar Aurora) Oct 7

For the past fifteen years I have made an annual visit to the Mary Bloom Center in Peru. Named for my mom, the Mary Bloom Center is a medical clinic and educational center that serves the needy in Puno, Peru.

This year my visit has been a little different. I am away from the parish for five Sundays rather than the usual three. Part of the reason is that last year my stay was cut short by the death of my niece's husband, Major Robert Lindenau. Serving in Afghanistan, Bob was killed by a rocket launched grenade on October 20, 2008. Of course, I came home early to preside at his funeral. This year - in order to attend to unfinished business at the Mary Bloom Center - I am staying longer than usual.

The visit this year is different also because, for the first eleven days, a delegation from Holy Family (Seattle), Queen of Angels (Port Angeles) and St. Mary of the Valley accompanied me. The delegation was wonderful and we scheduled a follow-up meeting to discuss how to share this experience with fellow parishioners and to prepare for future delegations.

One member of the delegation continues with me - Aaron Howard. Aaron has a gentle, prayerful spirit that Peruvians love. On October 14 we celebrated his birthday. Below are two pictures taken after the Oct 14 Mass at the orphanage. As a birthday present, the Sisters gave Aaron a key chain and miraculous medal. That day Aaron and I visited a woman in her twenties (Roxana) who is seriously ill with ovarian cancer. After the anointing and other prayers, Aaron gave Roxana the miraculous medal. You should have seen the beautiful smile on Roxana's face. In the midst of a desperate situation, the medal represents spiritual solidarity and hope. Roxana has a six-year-old daughter, Mayra. For her especially she wants to live. Please remember Roxana - and all those served by the Mary Bloom Center. Aaron took a nice picture of Roxana, Mayra and me that I hope to have for next week's bulletin.

I know that some of you are facing difficult situations. You have my prayers, Aaron's and all those at the Mary Bloom Center. May God's blessing and the Virgin Mary's intercession be with you.

October 14, Aaron's birthday with Sisters and orphan girls after Mass (red vestments for Feast of St. Callixtus)

Birthday present: miraculous medal and key chain with Miraculous Virgen


Pictures by Aaron Howard

"Cuy" (Roasted Guinea Pig)

Delegation at Mary Bloom Center with picture of Major Robert Lindenau, October 5

Saint Rose of Lima

Pisco with Vincentian Daughter of Charity and lady they helped to obtain a new home after the 2007 earthquake

Artesanry Market in Lima

Vicuñas crossing (from bus between Arequipa a Puno)

with Roxana and daughter Mayra

Interview at Puno television station

Flamingos at Children's Park in Puno

Luis Felipe and Janine at Children's Park

Our Lord of the Miracles, Puno, October 18

Storm gathering in Puno


Paulino, suffering from damage to brain from an assault

Birthday of Aaron, October 14, Mary Bloom Center

Obst. Lidia Quispe with Nancy before exam for cervical cancer ("Pap smear")

Lucy with her children

Aaron with Melani & Janine

at Children's Park in Puno

First Anniversary Mass for Major Robert Lindenau

Lucho with his daughter, Janine

Melani, Luis Felipe, Aaron


Pictures from 2008 Visit to Peru


Earthquake Relief, 2007

Pictures from 2006 Visit to Peru



Encuentro de Laicos (8-10 de agosto, Puno)

Pictures from Oct - Nov 2001 Visit (with Fr. Bill McKee and St. John Parishioners)

Pictures of Earthquake Relief (October 22, 2001; Saguaya)

Pictures from 2000 (by Georgina Rea)

November 1999 Fotos

Other Recent Fotos (Orphan Girls, etc.)

Pictures added January 2000

Picture of Baby Francisca

Letter from Georgina

Pictures from Visit of Frs. Narciso & Faustino (February 2001)

Pictures from June-August 1998 (by Denis Bruneau)

Can you help this child? (Photo by Lucrecia Perez)

Mary Bloom Staff and Volunteers with Banner (May 1999)

Pictures of Visit of Luz Marron and Melani to Holy Family (March 2002)

Fotos de 1997 Visita

Fotos de Mary Bloom.
Mary Bloom en el Perú.
Fotos del Centro Mary Bloom, 1995.
Noviembre 1996
Retiro con Instructoras
Examen Médico.
Pictures of Navidad en el Centro Mary Bloom

Construcción del nuevo centro

Nuevo Centro. (Inagurado 26 de junio de 1998)

Artículo en Periódico Norteamericano sobre el Centro Mary Bloom

Fotos del Nuevo Centro

Una Noticia Trágica

Inauguración del Nuevo Centro (Obispo Carrión, 26 de junio de 1998)

From Holy Family (1995-2009):

2009 Pilgrimage to St. James Cathedral
Pictures from 2009 March for Life

Prayer Vigil at West Seattle Planned Parenthood

Fabian, Planned Parenthood Puppy:

St. Mary of the Valley Album