Christmas Festivities 2016…

On December 15th we started our: 10 Nights of Christmas Movies Extravaganza! 

Every night we will pass out popcorn leading up to our Christmas Eve Service on December 24th!

Here’s our Movie List for Mole Cinema 2016:

Dec. 15th we showed: Cheaper by the Dozen
Dec. 16th we showed: A Christmas Story
Dec. 17th we showed: Mr Bean Holiday – Passed out Rice
Dec. 18th we showed: Snow Dogs
Tonight we are showing: Daddy Daycare
Dec. 20th: Elf – Jose will dress up like ElfWill pass out Rice again
Dec. 21st:  Home Alone 1
Dec 22nd: Home Alone 2
Dec 23rd: Narnia – Will Pass out Rice Again
Dec 24th: Nativity – Will pass out Peanut butter sandwiches & Hot Chocolate
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Also on our Mole Christmas Agenda:

December 23rd: Orphanage Christmas Party

We went shopping for the orphans in August and loaded their things on the boat! On the 23rd the children will eat lunch in the main cafeteria and watch a Christmas Movie…. while Miss Beth & my family decorate their playroom! Not only do we have pretty decorations to hang….but we’ve got play kitchens, dolls, trucks, cars, army men…. AND all kinds of wonderful toys to set-up in their playroom! 🙂

Miss Beth has been working with the children the past few weeks. We are teaching them what it means to care for the things God has blessed them with. Have you ever seen Toy Story 3? Do you remember the playroom that the toys were afraid to stay in?  Because the children played so rough with them?

Well….that’s kind of what it’s like to be a toy in our orphanage playroom! YIKES! We’ve had most of these children since they were babies. So the burden of teaching them how to care for the things that God gives them is on us. 

So Miss Beth gave each child a card with their name on it. (A card from a deck of cards). They have to take care of their card – keep it dry – keep it from being ripped – keep it clean- don’t lose it.  The older ones are helping the younger ones keep up with their cards too. There’ve been beautiful lessons come out of this simple exercise that I’m sure Miss Beth will be sharing soon! She’s also doing the same exercise with my children as well!  🙂

December 24th: Christmas Eve
12pm  Feeding 200 Elderly folks in our community
6pm   Before we show Nativity we will have a Christmas Eve Service. Then during the movie we will pass out Hot Chocolate & PB Sandwiches.

December 30th-January 2nd: Christmas Camp 2.0

Last year we invited the orphans from St. Louis to spend a few days here with our orphans as part of their Christmas Celebration! We had planned on bringing them here earlier in the month but due to the flooding – we had to postpone.

This year we will keep them over New Years! We are SO excited to spend this weekend together! We have SO MANY more things planned this year!

January 1st: On New Year’s Eve we will host an all-night service for the community! We will start at 8pm with a Campus Bonfire where we’ll roast hot dogs together! Then the service will start in the church at 9pm and end at 5am! At 5am we’ll serve everyone Pumpkin Soup before they head home! We also have fire works to shoot off at midnight! 🙂

Our plan is to pass out roughly 800 bowls of Pumpkin Soup on January 1st – Haiti’s Independence day! 

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We didn’t get to decorate as early as we wanted because of the flooding – but we did manage to get the campus lit up before we started our Movie Nights.
To see pictures of our festive courtyard click here: https://lifeoffering.org/2016/12/14/letting-his-light-shine-christmas-2016/

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I know many of you are not on Facebook so I wanted to update you on what’s been happening the past two weeks!

Jody Owen Castillo added 3 new photos — with Jose Alexander Castillo.
Yesterday my sweet little Gigi turned 16 years old! She was just 2 years old and 7 pounds when God brought her into our lives. The doctors said she would never live to see her 5th birthday…
As you know Momma Gigi is one of my best friends… and is the biological mother of Gigi. Though Gigi cannot speak, is blind in one eye, deaf in one ear, and has the mental capacity of a 6 month old….God has used her to bring others into a deeper relationship with Christ. There are so many stories I could share where people doubted their own worthiness – their own value… and through Gigi’s life & love – they’ve seen and understood the goodness of God.
Gigi doesn’t eat anything unless it’s covered in ketchup. So instead of a traditional cake….we made her favorite meal! Why yes…. this is a Macaroni & Ketchup Heart-Shaped Dish! 🙂
Here’s the link to Gigi’s story that I wrote 2 years ago – for those of you who haven’t heard it. https://lifeoffering.org/2014/…/18/happy-14th-birthday-gigi/

Happy 16th Birthday Gigi!

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We are on night 3 of our – 10 Nights of Christmas Movies Extravaganza!

Mme Nene led the worship and Momma Gigi shared the devotional! Afterwards we passed out bags of rice and popcorn to each person!

The rice was a special surprise and the community was SO SO thankful! Many didn’t have anything to feed their families tomorrow and now they do.

Tonight’s Feature Film was Mr. Bean Holiday! It was another night full of laughter and gratefulness!

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Tonight is Night 2 of our: 10 NIGHTS OF CHRISTMAS MOVIES EXTRAVAGANZA!

Pastor Agenor spoke, sang, and prayed with everyone before we started.

The church is packed with about 330 people from the community! We are hustling to make more popcorn!

This is our first year showing movies in the church but our 5th year doing this overall.

Typically there’s a natural growth of about 50 additional people each night…. so we figured we’d have roughly 200 tonight and 250 tomorrow night.

We’ve also run out of seating so we are scavenging all over campus for chairs and benches. We have about 50 kids on the floor in the front too.

In talking with the adults tonight – some of them told me they didn’t come last year because they “felt” like it was for kids. But this year they just needed a break from reality…. if even for a night!

I have a feeling this year will be our biggest year! So much sorrow last month – people really need to come together and laugh together.

Last night we showed: Cheaper by the Dozen

Tonight we are showing: A Christmas Story!

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After a month of waiting – our supply truck has arrived!!!

Instead of coming from Port-de-Paix directly here (because roads are still cut)…. it had to go from Port-de-Paix to Gonaives – then cut through Bonbardopolis to arrive in the Mole…. adding about 5 extra hours.

It was a long journey but it’s finally here!! This truck has 400 boxes of food, dozens of boxes of medicines, and lots of construction supplies!!!!

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It’s a Great Day to Be Alive…

And it’s a great day to be alive
I know the sun’s still shining when I close my eyes
There’s some hard times in the neighborhood….
But why can’t every day be just this good

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I may or may not have been blaring that song on repeat today! This morning the clinic was full – but something was different. There was a sense of JOY this morning that I hadn’t felt in the clinic in quite awhile. I don’t know if it was my change of attitude or if it was theirs – or if it was simply Christ moving through each and every one of us right now… there was a sense of gratitude, patience, & peace today. I always play music in the waiting room. As we called patients to be seen – they had an extra pep in their step. They kind of danced their way into my office.

After clinic – little Fabi climbed in my lap. She’s normally a parrot – if you say something she’ll try to repeat it. But without any prompting she managed to string together…”I wuv ou” and gave me her paci! (I didn’t necessarily appreciate the slobbery pacifier shoved in my mouth) but the spirit with which she did it was precious!

Mikela, one of her friends, & Momma Gigi came over after lunch to practice O Holy Night for over an hour. I’m playing it on the piano & they’re singing it in French & English. We want to perform it at our Christmas Eve Service. We had SO much fun as they tried to hit the HIGH notes. We laughed so much we cried!

Tonight was also the FIRST night of our “10 Nights of Christmas Movies Extravaganza”! This is our first year doing it in the church! We have invited the entire community to come! Tomorrow is a big test day for the students and is also the last day of school until January. So please be praying for the students in the Mole.

I have asked Pastor Agenor to speak each night before we start the movies…. just want everyone to know that God is here – His eyes are upon us!

We will pass out popcorn every night leading up to Dec.24th …at that time we will pass out hot chocolate and PB sandwiches while we show the Nativity Movie. We also plan to pass out the sacks of rice we received yesterday throughout the next 10 nights.

And to top off this spectacular day…..When I got home I had a new coloring book laying on my desk. It was the exact one I wanted! So now I’m going to sign off, play some Christmas music, put my PJs on, and spend the evening quietly coloring! 

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For staff meeting today I shared the story of the Candy Cane! Then I broke them into three groups to play Spoons – except instead of spoons it’s Candy Canes!! 

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Why it’s not safe to take a little afternoon nap when you live with Asher and Levi …

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Hmm… Can you tell that a Castillo may have had a hand in decorating the church? 😊

Mikela and her friends took charge of the decorating yesterday! I actually can’t take credit for the excessive Christmas Spirit that is displayed here this morning…. though I’m very proud!! Lol!

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