Have I told you how much I love our staff here in Haiti? They are quite an amazing bunch! Pastor Edon and Director Voltaire keep the school running like a well oiled machine (realizing this is all relative to the community we live in, okay?) Renord and Marie Ange keep track of all the stuff (tools, donations, furnishings, etc.) and are the amazing “welcoming committee” at our Thozin campus. Jephte and Gardith help to keep everything organized on paper (accounting, projects, records, reports, etc). Pastor Edon and Pastor Hakine keep our churches healthy. Angelise keeps our visitors coming back with her hospitality at the missionary compound. Junior keeps electricity running. Pepe keeps construction moving forward. Pastor Bauvais keeps us all covered in prayer. Feyo, Wilson and Milo keep our campuses secure. Amitane keeps our students fed. Dr. Lavaud and Ruth keep us all healthy. Mackenson keeps the radio emissions active. That’s but the tip of this iceberg we call Mission of Hope International.
This month completes 15 years that this mission has been serving the people of Grand-Goâve. There has been a lot of painful growth, but mostly an overwhelming sense of joy for all of us here. While training up leaders has always been a priority for us, today I can look around and actually see that Lex and I are working ourselves out of a “job.”
This week we will be attending what is apparently the last of the Medal Award Ceremonies for the Sri Lankan military serving with the UN in Haiti. We have maintained an outstanding rapport with the officers and troops, who have served here for 6 months at a time over the past (I believe) 7 years. The current commander let us know that this is the last contingent coming from Sri Lanka. We have many, many friends in Sri Lanka today and will miss the opportunity to make more. We are grateful for their time of service here and hope to visit them one day in Sri Lanka.
With Leah’s departure, we are doing a little reorganizing in our medical ministry. While our Haitian staff continues to see patients and dispense needed medications, they are not trained for the many administrative tasks necessary to keep the clinic working efficiently. Last week Lina worked with Gardith to teach her how to use our Electronic Medical Records. We’ve put some tracking forms into use and made some slight adjustments to the systems in place. I anticipate Gardith and Marie Ange will be playing a bigger role in the daily functioning of the clinic. This week we started the daunting task of inventorying our medicines and supplies for the clinic. Renord and Marie Ange have made sure I’m never alone as we count items and pills. I actually thoroughly enjoy this kind of work, so it’s been enjoyable, but I also realize that I’m getting behind on some of my regular tasks. Prayers for a quick (and accurate!) completion would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
Lots and lots of counting this week!
Pastor Sean Moore, who serves with the Hands and Feet Project here in Grand-Goâve, shared an inspirational and practical message with the church this morning about humility. (It seems the Lord has been speaking to me all week on this very subject.) The recurring theme in his message, and really throughout much of the Bible, old and new testament is this: Holding on to pride can ruin your life, whereas choosing humility will elevate you. One of many places to find this in the Bible is in Luke 18:14b “…For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
Sean asked a question today that I’m still chewing on. I’m still contemplating the answer – no, answers, for they are numerous. “What would the world be like today if we all practiced this?”
Different circumstances this week kept another verse rolling around in my head, Proverbs 15:1 “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Oh, but would my pride LOVE to pick apart other’s harsh appraisals of me, my family, friends or loved ones. In each of those situations I chose humility and gave a soft anwer, but I must admit to feeling a bit dejected by the time this morning rolled around. I’m so grateful to the Lord for having Pastor Sean prepare a message just for me. I’m glad others got to listen in, as well.
Church service in Thozin
Lex visited our friends in Archaie at the COBBA Orphanage yesterday. He was able to share some food with them and check in on how the kids are doing. He found they were without a working generator, so they have not been able to pump water from their well. With a yard full of little ones, this poses a serious problem. We are hoping our small engine repairman will be able to help them out this week.
Speaking of water, we had another successful well drilled this week. The area where our donors have been building houses for the needy will now have a water source right there in the middle of their little village. We still have to wait for the company to install the pump, but the good news is there’s plenty of water!
There be water here!!!
Here are a few more fun pictures from this week…
Mmmmm. Mmmmm. GOOD!
Fun moves with the 3 year olds
The corn that was sprouting up so fast suddenly was shortened
Happy faces, because they know the food on their heads will soon be in their bellies.
By the way, we did have a time change at 2 o’clock this morning. The problem here in Haiti is that we’ve changed our minds so many times about whether or not to observe daylight savings time, that even the cellular companies don’t know whether to change it or not. Consequently my computer tells me it’s 7pm, but my phone tells me it’s only 6. Even more fun is the way we have adapted to the time change. We know it changes for Sunday morning, but we all assume the old time for church and the new time for school on Monday morning. Well, at least in our little corner of Grand-Goave that’s how we do it. I LOVE it!!!
Thank you all once again for taking the time to read through my musings. I hope you enjoyed the pictures, too. An extra special thanks to all of you who are praying, volunteering, and making financial donations. You are impacting more than you will ever see in this lifetime. Thank you!