Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Haiti Team Update - Day 5

Like each day this week, we started out ministry off with VBS in the morning.  It's fun to recognize names and faces as we get to know the kids, in spite of the language barrier.  As we connect with the kids, we have begun to think of some of them as "our own". As the kids pile off the bus, I find myself looking for "my kids".  I wish we could bring them home with us.  Each day they enjoy singing, crazy contests and games, and work on a memory verse.  While all of this is happening, we become human jungle gyms.  They love climbing, cuddling, and holding hands.  They're also fascinated with our hair.  They love braiding the girls and some of the guys hair.  They find male arm and facial hair interesting, as most Haitians don't have much.
We had a neat honor in the afternoon.  On Monday, we were at Bercy for our afternoon work project. (See Day 3)  Our team did such a great job working on the pastoral and teacher institute and conference center that the foreman asked for us to be reassigned to come back for an extra day.  So we got our sweat on, moving concrete block, backfilling parts of the foundation, trying rebar for the foundation, and a variety of other tasks. While we in no way completed the job, we were able to get large part of the project jump started.  Jake, the foreman, said we saved his crew weeks of work.  We're excited for how God is going to use that facility to further His Kingdom.
Thanks for your prayers and support!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Haiti Team Update - Day 4

Today we began wtih VBS, this time right here at the Mission of Hope main campus.  There were tons of kids.  Each campus runs the same 6 stations, some of which were described in yesterday's post.  Another station is lunch - every kids gets a meal.  For many, this is the only meal they will get all day.
In the afternoon, our team went to the city of Cabaret.  Mission of Hope is working to build a relationship with this city. So we spent the afternoon meeting, talking, and praying with residents.  We have some amazing stories and experiences from this time.  Be sure to ask a team member about it when we return.
We closed our day out with a powerful time of worship with the Church of Hope, here on campus.  It was over 2 hours of passionate and engaging worship.  Amazing.
We're grateful for your prayers and support!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Haiti Team Update - Day 3

Today has been an amazing and exhausting day.  We started early with breakfast, and quickly departed for the village of Bercy, where Mission of Hope has another campus.  We spent the entire work day there, and it was fantastic.
Our day began with VBS.  It's a lot like what you'd expect, because kids are kids.  We traveled from station to station working with the kids.  There were a couple of unexpected stations.  There was a hygiene station, where the kids were taught to wash their hands and brush their teeth.  There was also an agricultural station, where they learned some of the basics of planting basic bushes and fruit trees.  It was fun to work with the kids, even though we couldn't speak the language.
In the afternoon we stayed at Bercy, but began to do some manual labor.  We helped in the building of a pastor and teacher institute.  This will have a huge impact in the country for years to come.  They hope to have it completed by January, which is when they have their first conference scheduled.  A pastor can attend as long as he brings 5 farmers and 1 teacher to be trained.  Many of our team tied rebar for hours for the foundation.  Others backfilled gravel and dirt.  We also dug trenches for future footers.  Words cannot describe the intensity of the sun, or the gallons we both drank and sweated today.
We're back on campus, enjoying cold showers, and waiting for dinner.  We will sleep well tonight.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Haiti Team Update - Day 2

Today has been amazing and eye opening.  We started our day with a tour of Mission of Hope.  This took nearly an hour and a half, because of the large scope of their ministry.  The campus is 72 acres and it seems that they are using every inch of it for ministry.  We learned about their orphanage, housing 63 kids on campus, their medical clinic, their dental clinic, their food distribution center (69,000 meals a day), the prosthetics and the 3-cords ministry (a place for amputees to work).
Our tour ended outside of the church, just in time for service.  We joined nearly 1500 Haitians for a powerful worship service.  It was over 2 hours long, but never felt long, even when most of it was in Creole. Singing familiar worship songs in English while our Haitian brothers and sisters sang in Creole was moving.  Then the pastor preached, with energy and passion, about the importance of the biblical family, and the responsibility of the various family members.
The last part of our day was a tour of their village ministry in Bercy, followed by lunch a local Haitian restaurant.
Tomorrow we begin our morning VBS ministry and afternoon village and construction ministry.  Please continue to pray for us.  Not only that we would be heathy and safe, but that we would have an impact for His Kingdom, and that we would learn to see people they way Christ does.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Haiti Team Update - Day 1

We're here! After a long day of travel, we have arrived at Mission of Hope, in Titanyen, Haiti. (Click here to see it on the map.)

Before signing off, we would like to remind you of a few things:

  • Prayer Meeting: There will be a prayer gathering for the team on Sunday, July 28th, from 6-8 pm at the home of Ed and Lorraine Predota. You can contact the church office or the Predota’s directly for more info and directions.
  • Return Info: The team plans to return to PHBC late on Saturday, August 3 (or possible after midnight). We are departing Port-au-Prince, Haiti at 2:31 pm on Delta Airlines flight #684. We have a brief layover in Atlanta, GA, and will arrive on Delta Airlines flight #1096, scheduled to arrive at 10:53 pm.  It will take some time for us to disembark and get through baggage claim. We will return to the Youth Center by church vehicles.  If you’re picking up a team member, they will call to let you know that we've arrived, and when to expect them back at the church, probably somewhere around or after midnight.  Please be flexible.
  • Communication and Updates: No news is good news. If we have internet access, we will share periodic updates on this blog
  • Tropical Storm Dorian: The PHBC Haiti Mission Team leaders and Mission of Hope are committed to the safety of all participants.  Currently, it looks like Tropical Storm Dorian may weaken to a "tropical depression" by the time it passes above Haiti.  Wind and rain are predicted along the northern coast (not our region.) We will take all prudent safety precautions.  
We are grateful for your prayers and support!
2013 Haiti Mission Team