Today we went to Dupin for team three's first day of work. We met our translators and rode in the cattle truck. We got a flat tire and had to hike the rest of the way but the view was amazing. We were happy to see that school was in session and all the students that came got their physicals. We got a special treat for lunch with coke and passion fruit pop. We loaded up at about five o'clock and headed back to the mission center. We had a tasty supper and celebrated Pam's birthday again with a Haitian cake from nurse Anite. Pastor Miguel and Maude (our cook) joined us. It's been a blessed day!
Rachel- we found your sponsor girl! :)
Lots of goodies came from this little girl's ear!
November 20, 2018
Today we are reflecting on power. We started this reflection this morning when we made our coffee in a French press again because the power was out. As far as the power provided by electricity, we like it, but we can function without it.
The power we cannot get by without is the power of Jesus. We know that at home, but we feel it in a special way here in Haiti.
Listen to the story of Shakespeare, a 10 year old student at Chardene. He had his physical last week with Nick, and he explained that the wounds on his right arm were from a voodoo doctor trying to take blood from him as a result of a curse that had been placed on him at birth. The wounds were infected. Last week's team got together and decided on an antibiotic and dressing instructions. Then they gathered to pray for him. Pam asked if he knew Jesus, and he said yes. She told him that Jesus' power is stronger than voodoo. He has been thought of and lifted in prayer several times since then, and today we were back at Chardene and got to follow up with him. Belinda checked him out, and his wounds had healed!! All better! There was great rejoicing, and we were happy to be witnesses to the power of Jesus.
It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights. 2 Samuel 22:33-34
We saw the power of God's love this afternoon as we shared hugs and laughs and smiles and prayer and a meal with five sponsored children and some of their family members. The children were beautiful and they had so much fun blowing bubbles and playing duck-duck-goose and London bridge and taking selfies. Deb has spent time with her sponsored child, Eldana, previously, but today she got to meet her mother for the first time. The children ate well, even Roselinda, who had had her tonsils taken out two weeks ago today. Sponsorship allows for education and health care and hope for these children, and we could see it with our own eyes today.
Afterward, we sat around the table and sang and prayed together, and we shared stories of God's power as we have seen it this week and in the past. A special treat was hearing from Ruth and Liddie about growing up in Haiti. Leah shared about the bonding experience she shared with Hannah and Belinda during their travels on Saturday.
Remember, your prayers have power too! Please remember to pray for us and for the Haitian people. We are off to Degeance tomorrow, and Sabine is heading home.
November 22, 2018
How are your feet?
One of the important components of the physicals for the Mission Possible students is the foot check station. Each child takes off his socks and shoes and a team member checks for sores or peeling skin or any other problems. Those feet definitely see some use! When you live in a place without many roads and sidewalks and don't always have access to shoes or to shoes that fit, your feet are dusty and dirty (and if they are like ours, some are probably stinky :) ). The good thing about checking feet is that it is an easy and inexpensive way to improve health for the children. What better way to serve and practice love and humility. This week, one of our translators, Macintosh, jumped in and did this task faithfully.
So, for perspective, how are your feet? Can you clean them whenever they get dirty? Do your shoes fit, and how many pairs do you have? We are so blessed to spend this holiday that is intended for giving thanks here, in a place that highlights how much we have for which we should be thankful.
We are thankful for safety today. We are thankful that Maude made us turkey for supper! We are thankful for each other-what a great time of sharing we had tonight, revealing who we had been praying for this week and encouraging each other. This team is an amazing group of people who are authentic and learning to love like Jesus. And then, the singing in the kitchen, AKA kitchen karaoke. I wish you could have been there. It Is Well With My Soul, Amazing Grace, Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart, etc. The melody and harmony filled the room, and it was breathtaking. We sang together for the best part of an hour (and it was the best part of the day!).
"The sun comes up, it's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes
You're rich in love and You're slow to anger
Your name is great and Your heart is kind
For all your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find
Bless the Lord, Oh my soul
Oh my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
Oh my soul
I will worship His holy name
And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore"
Thanking Him in Haiti...
November 23, 2018
And just like that.... we are done doing Physicals. "Mesi pou vinni na fisik ou" (Thank you for coming to your physical). Today was one for the record books: We had the first ever school physicals at the Mission Center. The Mama's and Papa's brought our Lanzac students to the Mission Center in order to get their children's physicals. It was fun to have so many families running around, but it got a little crazy when the students didn't want to leave. Leah loves seeing patients by the ocean with a great view and a cool breeze! Hannah had the opportunity to take a child through the physical line, I think she has found herself a sponsor kid! We were finished by lunch time and were able to share a mismatch lunch of American food, cooked by Heather and Sabine, with our translators. We had barbecue chicken, chicken burritos, pineapple, cole slaw, applesauce, summer sausage, and cheese sticks. The translators liked the barbecue chicken best, but we aren't sure that they really liked it that much. Evans said "he can adapt to any meat" and this was Mackentouche's first experience with American food. It was great to fellowship with the translators over lunch! It was nice to have some time to talk with them on our last day of physicals. Emily and Liddie held down the fort with tooth extractions. This was the first day where there were no biters! Ruth did some much needed translating this afternoon when some students showed up for their physicals after lunch.
One student that we have been following all month had her physical today. We were happy to see that her burn is better. it is a great feeling when she recognizes us from her daily treatments. She easily climbs into our arms and has become more curious about the mission center. She "helped" in the pharmacy for a little while. She was so curious, grabbing for different medications, the formulary card, and anything else she could get her hands on. It was sad to say goodbye to her today, but we are happy that she no longer needs treatment from our team.
Lanzac is full of sponsor kids! Jean Peter, Sabine's sponsor child, was not happy about getting his physical today! Herta, our hygiene kit seamstress, brought her 3 children Elda, Billy, and our precious Ricardo. We love Ricardo, Billy and Elda too, but Ricardo has a special place in all of our hearts! Pierre Lensky, Hachemy's sponsor child, came through for his physical and got some love from Madame Hachemy (Rene). It was a special day with lots of pictures and lots of connections.
After we were finished with the Physicals, we organized and took inventory of all of our medical supplies. We had a busy month and our supplies have really dwindled. Deb, Belinda and Shari spent some time cutting bars of soap into 4 pieces. Deb informed us that Zest soap was the best and Ivory was the worst! After this was done, it was off to the beach! We enjoyed a nice afternoon relaxing in the water and on the shore.
Our community agents came to the center for their graduation practice! Watching them practice, hearing them sing, and seeing all of their beautiful hair-dos has us so excited for the celebration tomorrow.
The vendors came so we could do a little shopping. Devin finally bought the statues of the pregnant women she has been looking at all month. Rene got a wooden nativity scene. Many other team members made purchases! After shopping, Balak and Ruth came to lead us in worship and taught us a new song in Creole!
Nick rounded out our evening with some much needed chocolate (thanks Jeff).
PS: We are currently enjoying a wonderful thunderstorm which is bringing a nice cool breeze with it! Thank you, Jesus!!!
November 24, 2018
Today we said goodbye to Ruth and Liddie, as they headed back to Port Au Prince. We inventoried and packed in the morning, and then everyone got ready for the community agents' graduation. Hannah blessed several of the ladies by doing their hair. Deb, Belinda, Shari, and Pam received dresses from the Community Agents, Anite and Pastor Herve to honor their participation in the training of the graduates. We all attended the graduation, and it was quite a production! There was a band and several groups of dancers. The agents, led by Miss Anite, sang several songs. They even put on a skit that gave a humorous look at healthcare in Haiti and how it favors the rich and ignores the poor. We pray that these people will be part of turning that tide.
Deb had been named the "godmother" of the event, and both she and Pam gave speeches encouraging and honoring the community agents. Belinda, Pam, and Shari sang first in English and then in Creole, accompanied by Rene on the keyboard, with lights held by Devin and Emily, since by then it was dark :). You could sense the excitement of the audience as they heard them singing in Creole; it clearly meant a lot to them that the Americans were singing in their language.
The amazing Sabine and Heather whipped up mini-pizzas for our supper, and Pastor Herve came and chatted with us for a bit. Nick continued his role of making sure there were no leftovers. He ate 3 of the pizzas, but it paled in comparison to the 13 hot dogs he ate a few nights ago. Right now he has a blazing fire going (not because we are cold, but to burn some trash). Jeff Hochstettler, we finally finished the chocolate! Everyone is scurrying around getting everything packed and put away. We plan to leave at 4:30 am, so feel free to wake up and pray for us as we travel. Thanks for praying for us during the trip. As Devin said, it has been a week of answered prayers.
And when we get home, get a hold of us to find out how you can sponsor a student (or Community Agent) and also come on a trip yourself. You would be so blessed by both...