Returned from Haiti

September 8, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

Well, we’re back on the air.  Things are good here.  We actually arrived back in Indianapolis at 8:00 pm because we were able to get put on standby, so we arrived an hour and a half early.  It was sweet.  Anyways, I guess this would be somewhat of a review of the trip.

Big Randy's plate

Big Randy

Friday, August 29, might have been the longest day of my life.  I didn’t sleep much the night before, and we left the church at 3:00 AM to get to the airport for our first of four flights that day at 6:00 AM.  Fortunately, all of our connections were made so that was a great thing for us.  We arrived in Port-au-Prince at about 4:30-ish, a bit late, nonetheless we arrived.  Our luggage came and we headed to the compound, in the dark, in the back of the tap-tap.

  When we finally arrived, we ate diri-pwa, or beans and rice, and the welcome was set.  The night ended pretty early.Saturday started at 6am for me as usual.  I got up, checked the internet to let people know I was safe (they have satellite internet) and then headed outside.  I was the only American (blanc in Creole) who was up at the time.  I began snapping lots of pictures and then I sat down and talked to Pastor Turner for a while (the American Missionary to Haiti.)  He was just talking about all of the amazing things that God has been doing down there.  Most recently, Pastor John, one of the men who lives on the compound who works with the youth, but is a great Christian man and preacher had a vision to go evangelize the small town of Massicot.  Five hours away, he decided to go up there with a group from the compound and begin proclaiming the Gospel.  He received opposition from the voodoo witch doctor at first, but as John continued to proclaim the Gospel he told us the witch doctor plugged his ears, and then turn and literally ran from the presence of our missionaries.  Long story short, after three days of preaching with no church building….that means OUTSIDE….while Tropical Storm Fay is hitting Haiti, thus bringing lots of rain, hundreds of people were sitting outside listening to the Gospel message.  At the end of it, over 145 people have been saved from this village.  Don’t tell me that God doesn’t work in amazing ways.  Later that afternoon, I was able to see one of my little girls from last year named Sonia.

My good friend Sonia

My good friend Sonia

 She lives in the orphanage on the compound (not sure if she is an orphan, or if she just lives on the compound for an education…).  She’s a BEAUTIFUL ten year old girl with an amazing smile.  I was able to give her a picture of herself the last year, and she smiled even bigger.

 

Sunday began Vacation Bible School.  Around 400 people came in the compound from the 20 different churches that Mountain Faith Mission has in Haiti.  At night time, the services would pack out between 600 and 700 people in a tiny building, and God decided to move strongly throughout the week.  Notably, Wednesday night, God’s presence was felt so much.  It reminds me of a lot of the worship services you would read about in the New Testament church.  It also reminds me of a bit of Revelation talking about every nation praising God together around the throne.  While the culture is a lot more charismatic than we Americans, they were so sincere in their worship of God.

I was able to spend a bit of time with my good friend Shaylah from last year.  I saw her Sunday morning when she arrived on the compound and was able to give her a photo of herself from last year.  She smiled, her mom smiled, her brothers and sisters smiled…it was great.  She’s also a ten year old.  Throughout the week I would sit with her and talk with her in my horrible broken Creole.  Somehow, we were able to

Me and Shaylah, my professor

Me and Shaylah, my professor

communicate with one another though.  She is a bright young lady who is being raised in a very solid Christian home (her father is the “head deacon” in a local church in the mission, and her mother is very involved too).  She would teach me Creole words, and I would try to teach her English words.  After a while, she learned what Creole words I knew, and when others would try to talk to me in Creole, she would dumb it down for me.  The last night, I printed off a picture of myself and Shaylah and gave it to her with a folder of paper and a pen.  I told her “Mwen priye pou ou.” (“I’ll pray for you.” – my Creole spelling is probably way off.)  You would have thought I gave her a billion dollars.  The smile on her face said it all.  It also showed me how much we say that and don’t follow through.  She will expect me to pray for her.  You know what else, I honestly believe she’ll be praying for me.  

 

I am taking on a little bit more responsibility with the mission now.  With the mission having an orphanage with some 30-40 children in it, I was able to get a photograph of each of them, and will now be working on cards in order to get sponsors for each of the children in the orphanage.  Its still early in the process, but maybe you’d like to hear more about that and see the faces of these beautiful children…if so, follow the email link at the bottom of the post and send me a message about information and I’ll get it to you.  Also, if you’d like to just become more aware of the mission and become a supporter for the mission…that’s needed too.

There’s obviously so much more that goes into this trip – thus the next week or so will be full of blog posts about things I’ve learned in Haiti.  I do ask for your earnest prayers for Mountain Faith Mission.  This mission is one that is fully submerged in God’s will.  Right now they especially need your prayers as Hurricane Ike hit yesterday.  While they didn’t get hit head on by the storm where the eye made landfall, it was still bad.  I received an email from Sister Turner just about 20 minutes ago.  All of the people on the compound are safe.  (Even one of the churches from VBS from the village of Belbede is still there due to flooding from Hanna.)  This creates many problems as there are lots of mouths to feed,  but very little food to do so.  To make matters worse, the price of everything is going up.  Food has been climbing higher over the past year.  A small bag of rice recently costed $310 Haitian (about 40 bucks).  Sister Turner said now that Ike has hit, those small bags have jumped to over $500 Haitian.  To make matters worse, no one can get food in Saut d’Eau, they must go to Mirebalais, a city of about 70,000 about 45 minutes from Saut d’Eau by truck.  Unfortunately, Ike has washed out the only bridge to Mirebalais from Saut d’Eau, thus making it only accessible by using a mule to get there and it will take 10 to 12 hours round trip, and cannot bring back much food.  

Folks, this is a dire need for the mission.  After having a wonderful week with God, suddenly the mission is OUT OF FOOD.  We don’t understand this whole thing in America.  If I want food, I’ll go to the store, or the fast food place, or anywhere and pick it up.  THEY ARE OUT OF FOOD and they need to feed lots of mouths, close to one hundred mouths.  Please please please please pray.  These are Christians who struggle every day.  This is not some guilt trip post, but as the next week will reveal, these are our brothers and sisters in Christ.  I ask the question, “Would they suffer like they suffer now if everyone who proclaimed to be a Christian did what Christians are supposed to do?”  My answer to that is “Probably not!”

Anyways, before this gets long and out of hand, I sincerely ask for your prayers.  And, if you are interested in giving money for this exact problem they are facing, the mission can use money to send them.  Today,

Some of the boys from the orphanage

Some of the boys from the orphanage

 money will be wired down to them in order to get enough food to let these people survive.  SURVIVE.  If you don’t give, you’re not a bad person.  If you do give, you’re no better than the one who doesn’t give in my eyes.  But I do want to open that up to people’s minds and thoughts to be willing to give if they can.  God is moving in a mighty way in this country, and if nothing else, I ask that you pray hard for the current situation.  Keep checking back for updates as to what is going on with the mission.  And, if you are interested in learning more about how to support the mission in the future, how to sponsor one of our children in the orphanage, or to donate to the current food crisis that we are experiencing, please please please <a href=”mailto:mrakers85@comcast.net”>EMAIL ME</a> today!!!  

 

Below I have included some photos that I took during the trip.  Expect a lot of these within the next little bit.  I took almost 800 photos…I like doing that.  If you want to see more photos, you can find me on Facebook and I have about 100 photos on there. PLEASE PRAY!

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