From Day 4:
Taylor here, reporting at the end of our day! It has been such a great day in Haiti! The trees and mountains are so beautiful. Everything is breathtaking, including the people.
This morning, Zach and Lynsie worked in the clinic while the rest of the group went in to town for Hut to Hut conversations. Lynsie worked in the waiting room, doing coloring patience. Zach took blood pressure and prepared the patients to see the nurse.
We went in to town; the goal of Hut to Hut is to meet people to interact with and encourage them. The boys found their way in to a street soccer game with teenagers. During the game, Jodie colored with a group of smaller kids. Mason made the comment that he knows what it’s like to be loved by Jodie and he knows those kids felt loved. During that same time, I struck up a conversation with a teenage girl. We chatted for a while, I was standing the sun and sweating so much that she asked me why I didn’t have a towel! I laughed. About that time, her grandmother came out and invited me into their fence to sit under the mango tree. We talked about her family, her 10 children and 30 grandchildren, and all the ways she cares for them. I got to pray for both of them, it was a special moment.
Sports camp was awesome today! It wasn’t raining so we actually got to have kids to go all rotations for the camp. Bailey gave an excellent message about patience, we had dance parties, played basketball, everyone loved the bubbles, and played soccer. The kids had so much fun and the team did a great job of serving. After camp, we played with the kids in the orphanage. I learned a new card game, it was fun that they taught me a new game.
Tonight, we had a special worship and communion night for the core staff here at NWCHM. The goal was to worship together with them and bless them with time in the presence of God, without them being in charge of the service. We worshipped in English and Creole. During the English songs, the Haitian women sung their own songs in Creole to the rhythm of the guitars. It was truly beautiful. Justin shared scriptures about the value of laying hands on people to pray for them, did a great job. Then we laid hands on the staff and prayed…for healing, their families, their jobs, and for energy to continue serving in their jobs.
Caleb also shared about communion, it was so good. I am so proud of him and the confidence he had in teaching this sacrament to adults! I taught on God’s faithfulness in every season and how we will go from different levels of glory to glory as we follow him. This week has been really special for me in that I have had the honor to teach twice, tonight being my first actual sermon in Haiti.
On my very first trip to Haiti in 2011, I was asked to teach part of the teen camp, and I bailed because I was afraid. Tonight, I feel like God has redeemed my fear and failure from that day and let me grow in my teaching. It is an honor to get to teach the staff here who work so hard for the kingdom.
I cannot say how proud of the team I am. They are serving with such fervor and willingness. Every person on our team is bringing such value to the people and tasks that we are doing. They are representing our church well, and representing Jesus well. I am so proud to be part of this team with them.
—Shout out to Regina! We love you and miss you this week! We enjoyed your cookies so much!!
—Shout out to Baby Zeke and Baby Reid! The babies here remind me of you and I love you tons.
From Day 5 –
July 10th 2019 (Wednesday)
This is Eric saying hello from Haiti! We had an early morning today for our trip to Kapafu, a fishing village south east of the Mole. The trip was beautiful and without any complications (we didn’t have to bail out water this time). The village is very primitive, families live in straw huts and without running water or electricity. We were told by the one of interpreters that you can see Cuba from the village in the right conditions.
As soon as we got off the boat we began spreading out and looking for villagers. We were met with big smiles from the children and warm Haitian “Hello’s” from the adults. It didn’t take long we had a crowd gathering at the center of the village. We had crafts for the villagers to make and dominos for the men to play. The people of Kapafu loved making barrettes and pins! Mostly the women and children wanted to get involved in the crafts, but we did see some boys and men who showed some interest also. One of the ladies came to me and asked for “Crazy Glue” which is surprising to hear coming from a Haitian. They used super glue to put gems on their barrettes and pins.
The men and our guys got into some heated games of dominos, apparently it’s a serious game for the men of Kapafu. I think the rules were subject to change depending on the circumstance of the game. Zach and Mason delivered a powerful message to the villagers about “Walking the Path.” Both spoke with confidence and authority, it was awesome to hear! The only thing that was a little bit distracting was seeing the smile on Taylor’s face while the boys spoke.
We stayed as long as we could, the boats needed to get out before the water got rough. Before we left Taylor wanted to pray over village, but she was interrupted by Madame Willnow. She is the villager leader and a strong Christian woman. Madame Willnow asked that Taylor pray for the protection of her village and that the fish would be plentiful. Taylor and the team laid hands on Madame Willnow and prayed for what she asked. Taylor spoke to her after the prayer and told her that the she is a great example of a Christian leader for her village. We later found out that Madame Willnow either walks or catches a ride on a boat to church on Sunday, talk about no excuses! The walk must take hours and there is no clear path from the Mole to Kapafu. What a wonderful experience for all of us!!!
Once we got close to shore the boys jumped into the ocean off the boat, the water was glorious!!! The team met to hear a devotional that one of the interns led while we sat on the beach. Just another God moment that we all got to share! After the devotional we were scheduled to rest until lunch, so some of us stayed and swam for awhile before heading back. The salt water was just what we needed for our tired bodies and insect bites. We all met back at the cafeteria to eat and discuss our last day of Sports Camp with the children of the Mole.
SPORTS CAMP!!! We had over fifty kids show or the camp and most of them had been to all three days. We decided to rotate two groups that switched from inside for snacks or a lesson to outside for soccer or basketball. Our team was on fire! They worked just as hard, if not harder, than the first day of camp. The kids had multiple activities to participate in from actual sports, coloring, jumprope, bubbles, dancing, etc… Bailey has been leading the lessons for the students and he is something to see when he’s up in front of the kids teaching!! Once we finished the students get walked back to the bridge going to town and their smiles are just as big when they arrived.
After we had a chance to come down from sports camp, we rested for a few minutes. Some of the guys and ladies got their hair done by the campus staff. Corn-rolls can really change the look of young man! Some of the team went and played with orphans under the hut and others played soccer, which seems to be a favorite of the team and the kids! In spite of what anyone tells you, we are not very good, but it’s been a great way to connect with the kids and they really don’t care – they just want to play!
During the time we were playing with the kids there was a funeral that passed by the campus. It was so moving to witness! It reminded me of what a New Orleans funeral would look like. A band led the funeral followed by what seemed to be the entire community of the Mole! They were all dressed up in black suites and white dresses, very beautiful.
Our dinner was spaghetti and these rolls that were just wonderful (I had three). One of our guys found 7Up’s in the fridge and that was a unexpected treat! It seems like that whenever we sit together for whatever reason something amazing happens. Bailey and Justin have been talking about building relationships in the youth groups and this has helped to create several sided conversations with other people here at the Mole. Those two guys are pretty special!
After dinner we got take part in a staff bingo game. It was pretty intense because there were some pretty sweet prizes like money and other gifts that they got to choose from. Our team played along side the staff and “secretly” gave them our winning bingo cards. The staff got so excited and it was so fun to see the people that work so hard for God and the orphans have some excitement and appreciation.
We finished up the night with our team meeting. Each team member has a chance to recognize their fellow teammates for the awesome things that they have done that day. We all agreed that Lyndsie is an amazing person who can always be counted on to do what needs to be done and not say a word other wise. Zach has been awesome with the orphans and as a servant helping out where ever his is needed.
Mason has been a machine throughout the entire camp playing soccer, basketball, and loving on kids. Caleb has been very popular with the kids, whenever they see him they say “Caleb, Caleb,…” they love seeing him spin a ball on his finger and moving his ears. Bailey is really finding his groove here at the Mole, seeing him teach and talk with kids is absolutely amazing. We all agree that when Justin leads worship it’s special and that his gift can only be from God! Jodie has been behind the scenes working to keep things going and then you will see her with kids loving on them. Taylor has been smiling none stop sense she got here. The success of this team and the blessing that have come with it are a direct result of the love and guidance that Taylor brings.
Shelbi I’m sorry for all the grammatical errors it’s late and I don’t have you to proof read it. I love you.
We’re excited for another awesome day tomorrow and for what is to come as we wrap up the rest of our trip here!