The Tin Project

Hello from the Rudolph Family!

We hope this finds each one of you and your family doing well.

We are here at home in Grand Fond after several very full weeks. The arrival and aftermath of Hurricane Matthew has brought everyone a lot of extra work as well as great opportunities.

As mentioned in our previous email, many families in our community lost either part or all of their roofs (or their entire home) during the hurricane. It also destroyed their cash crops, most fruits, vegetables, and some livestock thus leaving them with little available resources for house repair and food for the Winter.

We have received several generous donations directed to helping with hurricane relief. We, along with Nathan and Virginia at first felt a little overwhelmed as to how to apply these funds in a way that does not contribute to the dependency mentality that many Haitians possess. After talking and praying about this, and reaching out to others for counsel, we believe the Lord provided us with the answers we needed.

The “Tin Program” is put together in a way to help the affected families get their homes repaired without encouraging the dependency disposition. We began with the damaged houses nearest our home base and are moving out farther as more funds become available. We are giving people two pieces of tin, nails, and a Haitian roofer to oversee putting it on (a total value of about three days wages) in exchange for a day of community service. The average home uses approximately forty pieces of tin, so if the roof was completely lost, the head of the home will be giving twenty days of community service. Each person receiving the tin signs a contract that states they will do this work in exchange for what they are receiving. The community service project they are working on right now is centered around repairing the roads. The hurricane created many washouts, landslides, and ruts making it more difficult for everyone to come and go. There are very few jobs available right now, so they all seem extremely grateful for this arrangement and every day about ten more people come asking to participate in the program. Michael tells them to pray to God as the supplier of their needs and that we will expand our program as we receive funds to do so.

We have been repairing eight to ten homes a week with our current crew at an average cost of $160.00 USD per house.

torn-roof
One of the Wind Torn Roofs
Michael explaining contract details.
Michael explaining contract details.
Nathan and Michael distributing tin.
Nathan and Michael distributing tin.
Happily carrying away her new roof :)
Happily carrying away her new roof 🙂
This home will soon be dry and secure!
This home will soon be dry and secure!
Making a house inspections after the new tin is on.
Making a house inspections after the new tin is on.
A thankful couple.
A thankful couple.

Thursday afternoon, an older, crippled man that we have known for years came to our gate and asked Michael to please come look at his home. Michael told him that the tin program was out of money currently, but agreed to go visit him and see his house anyway. They walked the footpath to his home, and upon arriving, Michael found a third of his roof missing and the rest that remained was full of holes. Michael told the old man and his wife to pray that God would provide money to help them fix their roof. Michael stayed and visited awhile, and as he turned to leave he received a text from Breanna informing him that we just got our statement from CMML (Christian Missions in Many Lands) saying that we received $2000 for “Haiti relief”. Michael told the old man and his wife that God just provided for them and their roof could be fixed soon. If they weren’t so old they would have danced a jig! Instead, they erupted with, “Beni swa l’eternel!” (praise the Lord!) multiple times. They were so happy…Michael was showered with hugs and kisses (maybe not the best part of the job:), but their joy was in God who had seen and cared for their need.

Since arriving back in Haiti, we have had to spend a lot of time on paperwork. We had to file for an extension on our USA 2015 taxes due to waiting on the slow Haitian government and accountant to get out Haiti taxes figured out. After pressuring the accountant to get them done by the quickly approaching October deadline, he unexpectedly told us one afternoon that we had to be Port au Prince the next morning to spend what turned out to be three days of running from office to office signing papers and paying money before we could finally figure out what we could count toward our American taxes. Also, October is the beginning of the fiscal year in Haiti so all our legal papers had to be renewed. We started the paperwork to renew our Haitian residency, Aid For Haiti annual taxes had to be paid, and all our licenses and permits have to be reacquired. Meanwhile we are still working on finishing the title transfer for our new truck, and renewing a permit to have it’s windows tinted. Paper work of any kind in Haiti is a huge headache to say the least!! Catching up on three months of LIFE Literature office work from while we were in the States took another week’s worth of time in Port au Prince but thankfully that is almost done now.

Often we wonder why it feels like it takes forever to accomplish normal tasks here. There are times we find it discouraging how much time it takes to get from start to finish on a project. We have been trying for the past two weeks to get this update written and sent but everything else is more demanding and every daytime moment is needed for the tasks at hand. Sometimes we have to just stop and figure it up to reassure ourselves that we are not stuck in some kind of world with shorter days. We have to realize that the little things we were used to in the States that would save a few minutes, or an hour here and there, add up daily. For instance, hot water has to be heated on the stove; you have to wait for tasks like laundry or vacuuming until when the generator is running on these cloudy days; hanging up and taking down all of the laundry on the clothesline, right now multiple times a day due to sporadic rain; keeping mold and the hundreds of tiny of bugs that get into our apartment cleaned up; walking everywhere due to lack of roads; and the list could go on. Also when we have a crazy day and the baby is cranky, we can’t just go out for supper. If we have a breakdown or run out of supplies everything is five hours away and there’s no Walmart or Lowe’s once you get there. We are slowly learning how to adjust and compensate, we pray for patience and and try not to schedule our time based on how long we are used to something taking, but to learn the new normals.

Please continue to pray for us that we would have energy and wisdom. We are daily making decisions that effect many people and we need God’s direction on how to best use our time and the resources He is making available to us.

May the Lord bless you all! Thank you so much for your continued support. Please know that we are so very thankful for all of your prayers and care for us.

In His Service,
Michael, Breanna and Junior Rudolph

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Hurricane Matthew

14591642_309027582788611_533880276984051990_nOctober 4, 2016 Hurricane Matthew pounded the southwestern part of Haiti with winds reaching an excess of 140 mph and flooding the mountains and valleys with torrential rains resulting in significant destruction of trees, crops, and buildings. In the mountains south of Petit Goave, Haiti where we are based two missionary families waited out this storm watching the destruction with amazement. We thank the Lord that they were safe through the storm and that their houses did not suffer significant damage although many of the trees have been broken or blown over. 14519932_308551976169505_678202764198793690_n

14492445_308554086169294_6285062557068823353_nMany of the neighbors houses have been significantly damaged and there are pressing needs for immediate housing as well as the repairs to the damaged buildings.14494819_309027532788616_7828461805732600483_n14517404_308553382836031_2268388168486728748_n

In addition to the damage to houses 14470612_308553142836055_8094024640025608109_nand buildings there has been significant loss of crops. We are grateful that the bean crop was harvested in the last two weeks, however, other food crops like millet and Congo beans had not yet been harvested and now have been completely ruined. Due to the destruction of trees the local farmers will not have their usual cash crop of citrus and other fruits to sell this year. As a result of this loss of crops we anticipate that food will be in short supply this winter.

14519810_309027542788615_8884401966450334352_nAnother challenge facing this community is the destruction of roads making it impossible to bring in any supplies at this time. These mountain roads are always difficult to navigate but now washouts and mudslides have made them impassable in many places. It is also reported that bridges have washed out on major roads limiting the ability to bring aid or supplies into many of the areas that are the hardest hit by this hurricane.14516552_308552262836143_4914163277783116326_n

 

Please pray for us and for this community as we try to understand how to help in this time of loss and need. Our heart is to generously show the love of Christ to this community and help them with their physical needs. We pray that this would open doors to also minister spiritually both now and in the future.

We welcome you to join us in ministering to the people in this community. At this time we do not have the ability to get any supplies directly to the areas of need in Haiti however you may donate money to help. We are committed to sharing whatever resources we have to help with meeting the needs of food, shelter, and restoring transportation. We are also committed to sharing the Gospel with those who will listen. Will you join us in praying for the people of Haiti?

Pastor’s Conference – Potino, Haiti: June 20-24

First of all, we want to thank you for your many prayers over the time of the conference. If you had been praying for a time of clear Biblical teaching, attentive & interested men, and the presence of the Holy Spirit, you may praise the Lord with us for answered prayer!

Philip Rudolph and Jim Kelly (elders from our home congregation here in TN) arrived in Port-au-Prince late on Saturday evening, June 18. We spent a very hot night in P-au-P at a guesthouse. The next day when we were ready to leave, we found out that one of our two interpreters had mistaken the dates for the conference and thought they were the following week! But thankfully, though there was some delay in our departure, he was still able to come with us, and we were so thankful for that!

Travel up the rough trail went well, and we arrived safely in Potino on Sunday evening. Michael set up all of his audio and recording equipment Sunday night, and the rest of the set-up was completed Monday morning. Michael was able to get good sound and video recordings of the whole conference. Lord willing, we will be making those available in other areas of Haiti as well.

The first session on Monday morning began strong with hymns, prayer, and anticipation. Then, a time of sound, Biblical teaching, you could just see the men drinking it in. Biblical exposition is not commonly found in Haiti, often personal opinions and traditions obscure what the Scripture really says. They have been taught certain things all of their lives, and everyone else thinks the same way. If you could only see their excitement as their hearts and minds are taught by the Word of God, and they realize new truths. It’s a privilege to be able to sit there and witness the Lord working!

Philip taught on Worship. The concept of “worship” is very misunderstood in Haiti. Many or most think it has to do with singing & getting worked up, dancing, and yelling. Philip was able to show from Scripture what the definition of worship really is. How does GOD want us to worship? What should worship look like in our meetings? How should we prepare to worship? He answered these questions and many more during the sessions throughout the week. Worship is the state of the heart before God and is voiced through the channels of singing, praise, Scripture reading, prayer, preaching of the Word, and is in conformity to His will and command. Worship is words; it is giving back to God the truths He has already given to us.

Jim taught on Systematic Theology. He showed how you can take any verse of scripture or any Biblical truth and divide them into one of seven categories: The study of God, The study of Christ, The study of The Holy Spirit, The study of man and creation, The study of Salvation, The study of the Church, and The study of the things of the last days. He gave an overview of each point using many Scriptures and helped them practice dividing the truths found in any verse into the different categories. He showed them how to organize and understand the way they work together and then how to teach these truths to their home congregations. He used a puzzle to illustrate how all of the doctrines of Scripture fit together perfectly, but, you must have and understand all the pieces in order to get the whole picture. If you only hold to some of the truths of scripture or do not understand some of them and how they work, the puzzle will not fit together and it will be a scrambled mess. He taught them how Systematic Theology helps you piece all the truths of scripture together and keeps you from ignoring any of the doctrines of the Bible.

The last session of the week was going late. The men were asked, do you want to stop now or finish this topic? The vote was unanimous, “keep going”! It didn’t matter that they each had a 1-4 hour walk home in the hot afternoon sun. They had the rare opportunity to be taught and they were loving it. Thank you each again for your prayers and support that make these conferences possible. God is so good!

Here are some pictures from the week:

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October Potino Trip

A wonderful medical team came down from Chattanooga, TN and spent five days in Potino. We were privileged to have a RN friend of Virginia’s, Lorene Miller from OH join the team as well. We were blessed with three family practice doctors, Dr. Paul Dassow, Dr. Mike Shepherd, and Dr. Eric Lisic. Also, two OB GYN’s – Dr. Jeanie Dassow and resident Dr. Zineb Mashak who were able to set up a women’s healthcare clinic next door, providing exams, counseling, and help for ladies who have never really had it before. Dr. Lisic’s wife came too, and was a marvelous help in the pharmacy! We had great translators and excellent cooks. In four days of clinic, the entire team was able to treat about 370 patients.

Team photo

 

Please Pray

Dear Friends,

We would like to share a couple prayer requests with you.

Over the past couple of months there have been a few armed robberies along “the trail”. The trail is the 12.5 mile section between our home, the Allegre/Grand Fond area, and Petit Goave. It takes about 1 ½ hours to drive it, during which it winds up and down and around many mountains and through a couple rivers.

Several weeks ago, a missionary friend was driving up this trail in his truck and on two separate days he was held up by gunmen demanding his money. Yesterday evening, a young man from a nearby mission was traveling up the trail when three gunmen stopped him and demanded he hand over his money. We also heard that gunmen were terrorizing a market today along the trail, shooting into the air and telling everyone to go home. The Petit Goave police are involved and investigating the situation, but what that means exactly, we don’t know.

Please keep those who have recently been threatened and robbed in your prayers, pray that God would take away any fear and give them and their families peace. Also, we have had plans to travel to Port-au-Prince this weekend and to do that we have to drive the trail. Please pray for our safety and peace of mind! We have considered canceling our trip, but since the police are somewhat involved currently, it’s probably just as safe as the next week. We have been thinking and praying about this a lot. We know that we serve a sovereign Lord who will not allow anything to happen to us that is outside His will. What a comfort that is! Whether we are here in Haiti or anywhere else, our King is on the throne reigning and governing every event and circumstance we face. We do need wisdom though as we make decisions and consider what His will would be for us as we work and travel here.

Thank you so much!
Michael and Breanna

Update

Bonjour! from Grand Fond, Haiti

Hello to each one of you from the lovely mountain area of Grand Fond, Haiti!  We got another good rain last night, so everything is fresh and clean and the sun is brightly shining.  The birds are happily chirping, the ravens are squawking, and there is a cool breeze coming in the window.  It was very dry here for awhile, but it has started raining a few times a day for the past week and our garden is greatly appreciating that! The first tomatoes are ripening!!

It has been too long since we have sent out an update and we do apologize for that.  There has been so much going over the past couple of months, there was a lot of stress for awhile just trying to get everything done and meet deadlines. To be very honest with you, when things are like that you just can’t simultaneously find time and words to write an “update”. Maybe we should just make a prayer request email next time things are that busy.  Things are slowing down a little now, though our days are still very full and filled with unexpected surprises, but that’s okay. 

So, where to begin?  I’ll start with April.  In short, the beginning of April was filled with preparation for our Haiti wedding reception, a medical team, getting our box truck unloaded and the things hauled up the mountain, many house projects, a lot of time in Port au Prince, LIFE Literature work, etc.

Our Haiti wedding reception was on Saturday, April 18, and it was quite a big ordeal!  Before we were married, many Haitian friends asked us if we were going to have a wedding reception in Haiti since our wedding was taking place in the States and it was impossible for them to come. We realized that culturally it was a big deal that we have a “fèt” (party) here as well since this is where we live.  We spent several hours consulting with some Haitian friends as to how to do culturally correct food, invitations, decorations, seating, etc. In the beginning we had this idea of doing things “simply”, but they said that it wouldn’t be a party unless we did decorating and a LOT of food.  They said the success of any celebration in Haiti is completely defined by the food you provide. They said they would love to plan it for us and make the food, for which we were very relieved and thankful!  Pastor Levi (from the local church in Allegre), his wife, and sister oversaw it all with help from ladies at church and we assisted where we could. They made 3-4 kinds of fried chicken, 3-4 kinds of pasta salad, various beet and cabbage salads, and many more things that I didn’t even have a place on my plate to try.  A missionary friend, Jo Seibel made a beautiful wedding cake.  At the party, before everyone ate, there was a short sermon, the church choir sang a couple of songs, Pastor Levi talked for a little bit, Michael spoke for several minutes, and then everyone feasted.  Quite a few Haitian friends came up to Michael afterwards and said things like, “Because you gave us a party, you are part of our family now.”  I will include some pictures below!

Our house is still coming together. A couple of weeks ago Michael did all the threading of copper pipe from the basement to the upstairs to hook up the stove in our apartment!  So I am enjoying being able to cook in my own kitchen.  There are so many things that go into making a house truly usable like it’s meant to be, so any “spare” minutes (we force Michael to have, ha!) are usually spent on him fixing something, putting something together, or one of the many projects brand new houses seem to require.  So working on the house has been an ongoing thing around here that one of these days we hope we can at least mostly check off our list of things that need done.  Michael has also been working a lot on the property here, cutting down some trees that needed cut down, driveway renovation, putting in a foundation for another storage container for medical supplies, and things like that.Another big project the beginning of May was Wilmane’s house.  Wilmane is the Haitian gate guard and helper who lives here on the property, and has worked with Michael for about 5 years.  He was living in a shack that was already on the property when AFH purchased it, but it was in poor condition and it needed rebuilt.  So Michael poured concrete posts, purchased supplies and prepared the site for his dad, Philip and his brother, Timothy to come down and build Wilmane a new house.  They came and built it in about a week, and now it is a nice little place.  Wilmane is VERY happy with it!  While Philip and Timothy were down, they also installed the cupboard doors and drawer fronts on Virginia’s and my kitchen cupboards, so WE are VERY happy! It was very nice to have them here, we enjoyed seeing and spending some time with them. Currently Michael’s friend Lyndon from Port au Prince is staying with us for several days to help Michael with some projects.  Today, they are actually in Petit Goave getting a shipping container for Michael’s cousin Don who has a children’s home near us. Then on Thursday, Lord willing, they will get one for us to store Aid For Haiti’s medical supplies in.  They plan to haul the containers up the mountain one at a time on the back of Don’s large truck.  The truck needs fixed before it can do any hauling though, so they are working on that today as well.  The container will be great to have on the property here.   We are hoping to get all of the medicines and medical supplies out of La’Cule during the next couple of months and store a lot of it in the new container. That is a huge project coming up, but it needs to be done. The building in La’Cule where AFH has been storing the medical supplies is expensive to rent, and now that we will have a place to store it, we are going to be moving it up to the mountains and re-organizing everything. So that is what we’ve been up to the past 6 weeks.   In brief, over the next month and a half or so, we will hopefully be able to finish up the house projects, build the patio/dining room on the main floor, move and organize La’Cule medical supplies, make security window bars for Wilmane’s house, change the engine on Michael’s truck, and prepare for the next surgery team coming in July.We recently received some questions as to how we get our mail, so I thought I’d provide some information on that.  We get mail through a missionary mail service called Missionary Flights International (MFI).  If anyone would like to send letters, etc. the address below is the place to send it to in Florida, and then MFI brings it to Haiti where we pick it up in Port au Prince. Any envelope under one pound is free, after that we pay $1 a pound and whatever customs charges.  Here is the address:Michael and Breanna Rudolph3170 Airmans Dr # 2201-AFHFt. Pierce, FL 34946Some people have also asked where to send support or donations; that is better sent to our address in the States which is:1367 Old Manchester RoadMorrison, TN 37357Never doubt that we love hearing from you! 🙂In His Service,Michael and Breanna Rudolph

An update from the Rudolphs…

It has been a long time since I have written an update for the Aid for Haiti blog! I am going to attempt to write at least a brief update concerning the past few months of our lives.

Mid December 2014, Michael came home to TN to help prepare for our wedding!  We were very happily married January 17, 2015. 🙂

January 17, 2015
January 17, 2015

We had a wonderful honeymoon in FL following our wedding!  We did quite a bit of traveling (TN, MO, IA) after our honeymoon, but we really enjoyed just being together. 🙂

Michael, Virginia and I arrived in Haiti on February 12.  We spent almost a week at home in Grand Fond unpacking, planting garden, and various other projects.  On February 18 we went to Port au Prince to do a variety of things that needed done since Michael’s long trip to the States.  One of the things we did was put away a shipping container of books for LIFE Literature.  We spent a full day moving many tons of literature and organizing the warehouse.  We also did shopping, bookwork and were able to weld the window bars and security door for our apartment.

February 25 we headed back home to the mountains planning to install the window bars, move into our apartment, and prepare for the 2 week medical team coming on March 10.  But God had other plans and we weren’t able to accomplish it all. On the way up the trail I began to have a fever and body aches.  Over the next couple of days I battled a fever off and on, it seemed like I had a virus. Gradually it won over and I was in a bed not moving much.  The sickness turned into a constant fever, nausea and vomiting.  I hadn’t been eating and was getting dehydrated. Michael gave me an IV and was able to get the vomiting to discontinue with some meds.  But for days after that I still wasn’t getting better, and when my eyes and skin started turning yellow and my whole body became severely itchy, we knew something was quite wrong.  We had done malaria and typhoid tests, both were negative.

Late Sunday Morning (March 8) we left the mountains and headed to Port au Prince to make arrangements for the medical team that would arrive in 2 days.  We also were thinking we’d get some lab work done for me while we were in town.  After arriving in PAP, I was doing worse.  Michael was in contact with his brother-in-law Dr. Philip Sutherland over the phone. As more symptoms became apparent, Michael decided we would skip doing testing in Haiti and go back to the States as they were narrowing the problem down it it probably being my gallbladder in which case surgery most likely would be required.  Thankfully, Michael was able to find tickets for both of us to fly out the next day.

To make a long story short, in less than 24 hours after purchasing tickets, we arrived in Chattanooga, TN at the Erlanger Hospital where I was able to have an ERCP and gallbladder surgery done less than two days after arrival and I am now recovering quite well.  We had a follow up visit with the gastroenterologist and surgeon a few days ago. The gastroenterologist said based on what the blood work showed, he believes I had Epstein Barr Virus, and the surgeon said my gallbladder was inflamed and definitely needed to be removed, so between the two that all made sense to us given the various symptoms.

The medical team came to Haiti as planned while Michael and I were in the States. We had so many friends pitch in and help make that work out.  It would have been a big deal to cancel all of the plane tickets and leave the patients hanging in Potino! Virginia went along with the team and did a wonderful job helping them out as she knows the system; she was able to do a lot of translating and run the pharmacy. We are so grateful to the Lord for what we believe was a miracle in making that team possible despite so many changes in our plans.

We are back in Haiti as of yesterday!  The medical team went home the day before we got here and Virginia was waiting for us at a mission here in Port au Prince.  We are in PAP for a few days before heading home to Grand Fond.  Over the next two weeks we have quite a bit of work to do on our house while we prepare for the medical team arriving April 17, Lord willing.  Today Michael made a brief trip to the mountains to do exams on hernia patients in preparation for the surgical team coming in July.

Thank you all SO MUCH for your continued prayers and support!  We love hearing from you.  We will try to keep this blog current with information and reports about the medical team, surgical team and pastors conferences coming up over the next few months.

We also recently started sending out personal updates by email.  If you would like to receive them, please email us at rudolphsinhaiti@gmail.com so we can add you to our list.

Breanna for us both

Answered Prayers

Time flies!  You have heard that before, but since I can’t think of a better way to put it, it’ll have to just be said again.  This is the first time since Feb. 12 that I have had the time to sit down and try to give you at least a brief idea of what has been happening here.  We had a safe trip down, and were so happy to get back home after traveling.  We spent a week in Gran Fon getting things refreshed after having been gone for a while, and Breanna and I planted our garden seeds.  The next week we went to Port, and spent the week making window bars for Michael and Breanna’s apartment, doing LIFE Literature work, and doing the shopping.  We went back home then with one week to get the window bars up and prepare for the medical team that came March 10.

But things took a different turn.  Breanna became ill; we thought it was just a virus.  She wasn’t extremely sick, but bad enough that she was pretty much in bed for a week.  Towards the end of the week though, she took a turn for the worse.  She had vomiting and nausea, and then developed jaundice.  Michael had to take a day and get the buckets of clinic stuff ready, and then we packed up for being gone two weeks with the medical team.  We also had to pack with the possibility of Michael and Breanna going back to the States since Breanna was getting worse.  They planned on doing some tests in Port Au Prince to try to determine what was going on, then decide what should be done.  Sunday noon we left the mountains, and went out to town where we stayed in a guesthouse.  That evening Breanna was so miserable that Michael decided to buy tickets to go back to the States.  He had been in touch with several doctors and the general consensus was that it was probably gallbladder related.  So late Sunday evening I was handed the responsibility of going alone with the team coming in on Tuesday.  Michael told me what I needed to do, and promised to be available by phone whenever I needed him.  He arranged transportation for us with some very obliging friends, and had all the translators lined up to go along.  Monday, he and Breanna flew back to TN, and I finished a few preparations for the team.  I certainly was not ready to lead a team, and felt horribly unprepared.  But friends both in the States and in Haiti were praying for me and the team, and so many people here in Haiti were kind enough to fill in the gaps that I couldn’t fill.  Lyndon Miller at Blue Ridge got the truck ready to go, and has done so many other things for us that I can’t even think of them all.  Jeriah Mast at CAM went to the airport for the team, and took us back to Potino where we spent the greater part of the trip.  I didn’t know most of the team at all, but had but had met the team leader, Dr. Dassow twice before.  But they all were wonderful, and I have some good friends and fond memories now.  I wouldn’t trade those two weeks for anything.  God answered the prayers, and blessed us abundantly with each other, patients to see and help, mostly good health, safe travels, and good weather.

 

Back Row L-R: Dr. Mike Shepherd, Dr. Sathish Chandra, Dr. Paul Dassow, Hamilton Heald Front Row: Charlotte Briggs, Dr. Christie Oskins, Laura Dassow, Dr. to be Christy Carter, me

God also did something for me that I was not expecting.  You know I asked for prayer to be able to find a tutor; well, I had talked to one girl, but it wasn’t really a good solution.  During this trip into the mountains, and having to be the connection between the team and the Haitians, something broke loose in my mind and speaking Creole is no longer a struggle.  Sure, I get words wrong, and need to expand my vocabulary, but I believe I am finally on the way to becoming fluent.  It was very encouraging to be able to translate for the doctors when they needed a female translator.  Also to have Haitians ask “Where did you learn to speak Creole? You talk like a Haitian.”  I think this trip was the tutor I prayed for.  I also spent a day with the cooks in the kitchen, and learned a bit more of Haitian culture.  I missed Michael and Breanna so much, and as much as I want Michael to have his job back, this trip was good for me, and I’m glad I went on it.  It is a wonderful example of God working all things out for good to those who love Him.

Breanna had surgery that Wednesday evening, and is on the way to total recovery.  It looks like she had a virus and gallbladder problems.  Michael and Breanna are flying back tomorrow.  Please pray for their safe travels.

So, I’m not sure what all to tell you about the details of the trip, there was so much that we did, and it was all so medical that only some of you would enjoy the details, and some of you might be horrified if I wrote about it. We spent most of the time in Potino, in the mountains, then we spent Saturday and Monday in Cazale at Real Hope for Haiti.  There we did women’s health, I think we saw around 120 women.  I did a good bit of translating there, and I really enjoyed it.

I will tell you about the pictures below though.  I title them “The Hands of Christ”.  This middle-aged man came in and could move his legs, but he couldn’t feel them.  We suspect he has something pinching his spinal column in some way.  Anyway, we talked to him, and gave him some money to go out to the hospital in hopes that it was not too late to do something for him.  But I was touched by the loving care of Dr. Dassow and the young man on the team (Hamilton), as they helped this man out the door and down to the road, then lifted him onto his donkey.  It isn’t only medicine that we can give, loving care and strong arms can bless and heal hearts even if medicine is useless to the body.

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The doctors did several minor surgeries, and anyone who wanted to learn was taught how to do various things.  The doctors even showed me how to do some things, and I LOVED it!  It almost makes me want to go back to school to learn something more than just what an LPN knows.  At the second clinic, there was a microscope, and that was fascinating! We made lots of slides; the “micro” world is so interesting!

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I don’t have many pictures, but at least this has given you a glimpse of our trip.  I am back at Blue Ridge waiting for Michael and Breanna to return on Thursday.  I just heard the team made it safely home this evening.  They were to leave yesterday, but due to a manifestation (a whole bunch of Haitians walking down the road blocking it off because they are upset about something) they missed their plane.  God provided them a place to stay for free last night, and they got to the airport plenty early today only to leave an hour later than scheduled.  Such is life in Haiti.

And here is a couple pictures of our garden which I am ready to see how it is after 2 weeks.  I hope the weeds haven’t grown too fast!

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That is all for now, thank you for your prayers for us, and your interest and support!

Home again, home again, jiggety jig…

I’m writing from the States, and in a week I’ll be back in Haiti.  So “home again” applies to both places; they are both “home”.  I have been back in the states for a few months to help my best friend and my brother prepare for their marriage.  They were married January 17th, and are very happily preparing to move back to Haiti – together this time.  Michael, as you probably know, has lived there since 2010, and Breanna (my best friend and now his wife) lived down there for a year.  We are all going back to Haiti this next week, and will be living in a small two story house that Michael and others have been working on for the past 1-2 years.  God has blessed us richly in providing what we have needed to have the house basically completed by now.  A special thank you, if YOU were part of that provision!

I am planning on starting advanced Creole language classes as soon as possible.  I need to be able and confident in my ability to communicate without a translator.  You can pray that I will be able to find a good tutor, and that my mind will easily retain the vocabulary.  I also plan to plant a garden, resume tutoring my cousin’s son (fellow missionaries), and try to settle down into life there before the next team we have in March.

Please pray for us as we endeavor to bring glory to the name of Christ, and share the blessedness of the Gospel.  The hearts of men are so dark with wickedness, pray that God would graciously bring many souls to Himself.

Without your prayers and support, the work will still go on, but with them, it truly gives wings to our feet and and lightens the load.  Please remember us, pray for us, and communicate with us.  Sometimes we know you are are praying, but to hear from you that day that you are praying can make all the difference in how encouraged our hearts are.

Please remember also that sharing the truth in a foreign land costs something as well.  If you would like to help financially please go to  www.aidforhaiti.org .

Thank you to those of you who have given in the past and have promised to remember us in our work!

December House Pictures

On November 26-December 4th, Philip, Rebekah and I went to help work on the apartment for Michael and I!  A few of the things accomplished on this trip were:

Painting the inside of the apartment
Installing door frames and doors
Putting together the kitchen cabinets, installing them and the counter tops
Prep for plumbing the bathroom and kitchen
Concreting the shower floor
Making a closet and bed for our bedroom
Installing rails on the stairway that leads up to the apartment
Wiring
Etc.

Michael has been working hard on the security aspect of the house, welding window grates (which he is doing in the photo below), painting, and installing them.   He is also doing what he can to get the house ready for our return in February before he comes home next week.  Please pray for him as he has a lot to do right now!

Below are pictures!

Michael and Breanna's apartment is the second floor.
Michael and Breanna’s apartment is the second floor.

 

Stair way leading up
Stair way leading up

 

View from front door: Living room and kitchen in main room, bed room through door on right, and bathroom through door on left.
View from front door: Living room and kitchen in main room, bedroom through door on right, and bathroom through door on left.
Bedroom
Bedroom
Bedroom closet
Bedroom closet
Bathroom
Bathroom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Front door and part of living room shown
Front door and living room

 

Kitchen
Kitchen