Newsletter from Haiti

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Let all that breathes praise the LORD!

July 31st, 2012

Giggles, loud laughter, singing, recitation, clapping, chatting, munching, and many other sounds were heard today as I observed and also sat in my office today.  The noise was so loud at times that in some of the meetings we had upstairs we could barely hear each other talking.  Today was the first day of VBS at the church at Adoration Christian Centre. There were some older ladies that had taken the time to organize a VBS week.  They had many young people come and volunteer for the week.  At 8:45 the children started to arrive at Adoration.  By 9:30 we had over 100 children.  By snack time there were at least 150 children there.  If things progress like they did last year then by Friday we should have five times as many children there.  Last year we started with 20 and ended with 100.  Here are some pictures of today’s festivities.

Getting everyone’s name and age.

 

 

All the volunteers got white shirts to wear.

 

The leader of VBS.

 

Singing a song.

 

Singing and clapping.

There were three classes each for different age levels.  The rooms were packed full and the teachers were busy teaching songs and memory verses.

 

 

 

Listening to the others share their memory text.

 

“Read your Bible pray every day and you will grow grow grow…”

 

Play time…getting rid of some of that energy.

 

Lunch time.

 

The helpers handing out food.

 

 

‘the poor you will always have with you…’

July 24th, 2012

A couple of weekends ago Alix, Roodveens, Samuel and myself went to visit the houses of the potential new students that might be attending our school.  I was more of a chauffeur than anything.  Roodveens and Alix did the interviews and checked out the houses where the students are living. 

I have lived in Haiti for a year now and have seen a lot, but this opened my eyes yet again.  I visited some places that I had never been before; I saw some houses that I didn’t know existed.  My heart was torn on these days because I had no idea there were people that lived in these conditions.  

‘Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of God.’  Matthew 5:3

During our visits to some of the houses I could not fathom how these people are happy with what they have. They were friendly and very hospitable, graciously offering me a chair to sit on.  They are content with what they have.  Yes, you could tell that they wanted more.  Yes, you could tell that if they could they would move out of the place that allowed a tonne of water in when it rained.  Yes, you could tell that they would appreciate more than one bed for their families to sleep on.  Yes, you could tell that they would like something better for their children.  But this is their reality.  I have seen a lot of things in my life, nevertheless, when I left some of the tents cities and concrete villages, where you had to go sideways through just to get to a house, I was saddened.  I’m saddened by the fact that over 80 percent of the world lives in poverty much like the living conditions of these people’s houses.  Try as I may, this doesn’t come close to describing what I saw and felt.

There are a lot of people in this world that make a lot of money.  When much is given then much should be given to those in need in return.  And this does happen!  Many people who have a lot also donate a lot of money to certain charities throughout the world.  I have experienced this not only here in Haiti but also back at home in Canada.  And for that I am truly thankful.    Adoration Christian Centre has a lot of supporters, a lot of people who are willing to give to this worthwhile cause. 

As many of you know, I am a huge sports fan.  I follow pretty much any sport and love to keep updated on the latest happenings.  I have been watching the money fly from one organization to the other.  I have seen athletes sign outrageous contracts and have read about athletes who will hold out because they have not been offered enough money.  To see that much money being given to one individual to play a sport for the year and then walk through a tent city and see all of those people that will never make what that one athlete make in one year really hits my heart.  This is when I am not sure if people really know what is going on in this world.  When one has been given a lot one should give lots in return.  I do not know if these athletes give money back to organizations and charities but with that much money I really do hope so.  ‘I pray that God would use the situation in Haiti to open eyes to His grace and mercy and that people would open their hearts in response.  

Once again we are thankful for the moneys that we receive from our supporters.  We are thankful the funds to run our school.  At this school our teachers are teaching the children about their relationship with God.  While we are teaching we are also focusing on teaching the children that there are four main relationships in our lives that need to be fixed: our relationship with God, our relationship with ourselves, our relationship with others and our relationship with creation.  Fixing those relationships is a good way to help those in poverty.  (When Helping Hurts is a book that addresses this topic and if you have not read it then I would recommend it)  Today I addressed the new parents that would be sending their children to our school and I told them that we are working together, parents and school to help our students.  To help them receive a better education, where they can then in return give back to their own communities and help out there.  That is why I love working for Adoration Christian Centre.

‘You will always have the poor among you but you will not have me.’ John 12:8 

Praying for the new houses.

July 10th, 2012

This morning Pastor Octavius, Remanius, Abner and myself travelled to the houses of Phase 2.  In each Phase we are building seven houses.  Currently we are in Phase 3.  Hopefully this coming Monday we will begin Phase 4.  It takes about 2 weeks to build a house 20 feet by 16 feet.  In each house there are three rooms.  One room is the dining room and kitchen while the other two are bedrooms.  After each phase is completed Pastor Octavius and others from the building committee go to each home to meet with the new home owner.  The purpose of this visit is to dedicate the house to LORD with thanksgiving and prayer. 

When we arrived at the houses we spent some time chit-chatting with the homeowners, and asking about their lives and family.  Afterwards we sang a verse of a song then read a couple of verses from the Bible…

“Unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.  Unless the LORD watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain.” Psalm 127

It is true, the LORD builds the houses.  Pastor Octavius went on to say that he hopes this house will be a house where God is served.  A house where the Bible will be opened, where prayer will be lifted up to God, a place where God can be introduced to other people and a place where children, with the guidance of their parent(s), will learn more about Him and come to love Him even more.

After the Bible reading and devotion, one of the visiting people led in a time of prayer.  A prayer filled with the requests above.  In all these visits took about 15 minutes each.  It was a wonderful time; a time where fellow brothers and sisters could share the common bond of our LORD and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Rebuilding Haiti

July 7th, 2012

Recently at the Grade 6 graduation I had the privilege to watch some of the students perform a skit for the audience.  It was really awesome to see the thought that went into this skit.  The skit began with the one of the girls coming in draped in the Haitian flag.  She collapses on the road, moaning and crying for help.

 

 

A shoe cleaner comes along and sees the lady lying on the side of the road, he stops, he pauses and he thinks then he leaves a little something behind to help the lady…
 

 

…so does a musician…

 

…a mother…

 

…a carpenter…

 

…a doctor…

 

…a judge…

 

…a Christian…

But this lady realized that leaving things behind is not going to help the person, it is the people that have to work together to lift each other up, to help each other out.  If Haiti wants to become a better country the people must work together with the help of God to become a better place.

 

Graduation at Adoration, 2012

July 1st, 2012

In Haitian schooling, children have government exams to graduate from Grade 6 and Grade 12.  The Grade 6 class of Adoration Christian School has been working hard in each of their subjects all year long.  They studied History, Geography, Mathematics, Bible, Language Arts as well as some others.  They are finally at the long awaited graduation, and then they can go on to the next level pending the results of their government exams.  Graduation ceremonies in Haiti are a big event to celebrate…

 

Getting dressed for the grand occasion!

 

The Processional!  And what an entrance it was. 

 

Pastor Delfis opened the graduation with a piece from the

Word of God and prayer!

 

Speaking of behalf of the class…also received the

highest mark in the graduating class.

 

Handing out the diplomas

 

A student receiving his diploma from Professor Evenz!

Thanks for the great job you did again Evenz with this class.

 

A student receiving his diploma from the Director, Alix Jean Pierre.

  

The ceremony was filled speeches and songs, including

the one sung by these two girls, very nicely done.

 

The audience watching the graduation cermony.

After the graduation cermony the end of the school assembly began.  The students received their awards for never being late and never missing a day.  The hardest worker and the person who had the highest mark received their certificates and their prize.  After all the that the report cards were handed out one by one.  The ceremony filled the whole morning and was enjoyed by all who attended. 

 

 

One of the Special Ed students opening his gift because he was the hardest worker in his class.