The church is located right on one of the main streets where Carnival is because we are less than a block away from the front entrance to the bull ring in town. The streets around the bull ring are shut down and filled with Tequila booths. Each company that produces Tequila has their own booth that they sell at. If I could describe what carnival is like, imagine your are walking down the street and hear a small band playing. This is fine, but times it by 30 different bands all playing different songs at the same time, what would it sound like? All the bands fighting to be heard by the patrons that have paid them to play. The patrons are not there to "talk" because it is too loud, but they are there to get drunk and take advantage of every kind of evil you can imagine. The amount of pregnancies (which is many) that happen from these 10 days is only one of the many affects of carnival. I have been told that if you want a drug, you can get anything you want. Prostitution is a huge problem as well.
Every year we get the chance to talk about our freedom in Jesus. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 10:23 “All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up." (ESV)
It is in moments like this we are able share the truth of the bible with young believers. For example, one person asked about going to the bull ring to watch a show. I said "Well, here is the thing, I understand that most people when they go to any kind of event involved in carnival it is usually done with some alcohol involved and getting drunk. The question is will you be sinning if you attend an event in the bull ring? Maybe. I myself have never been drunk so for me I have no problem being at a rodeo show and not drinking alcohol. (Bull fights are a different story) What will your testimony be if you attend an event where most of the people there are drunk? Will you be a light in the darkness or will you just be like everyone else there? What does it mean to protect your brother and causing him to sin because of something you do? The bible clearly teaches us that we are to not cause our brothers to sin. So do we sin if we go maybe or maybe not, but what if you some knew that you were a christian, what would they think of Christians but what your are doing here? There are so not very many Christians here in this city so our testimony is so important." You get the idea. It was a reminder to me of being the only white American in our town that people will talk about who and what I am doing here in a rural Mexican town. I need to take advantage of that, because most are curious as to why I want to live in Mexico when I can live in the US. What kind of testimony am I giving to those around me by what I do or say or don't do or don't say?