Haiti is Impacting the Nations
Many are writing in to us sharing of how this earthquake has touched them deeply. Many others are flooding churches in search for answers, in a time of devastation, hope must rise from the ashers. Though sorrow may last for the night, joy will come in the morning.
One man said in an email: "The fact that God has chosen to use Haiti as the center of what I belive is going to be a glorious time of GOD showing HIS might and HIS will just proves that once again He will use the most unlikely of people and places to do HIS greatest work. I believe with all my heart that Haiti will be wittness to great miracles indeed." - Bruce Kirk
My father, Kerry Pilling, wrote us today these words:
"I was so affected by this that I wrote a poem about it called:
Haiti Oh Haiti how I wept for thee,
When first I heard of your tragedy.
My heart was broken for your suffering,
But hopeful of what tomorrow might bring.
Nations that might have ignored you for years,
Will be sending aid through this veil of tears.
So take heart my friends and try to be strong,
Just know that God has been with you all along.
Once you were known as the "Pearl of the Sea",
Perhaps once again so shall it be!"
More News Comes Home
Today was another encouraging day for some of us, yet still frustrating for many. The parents of Mt. Sentinel students on the Nelson, BC team in Haiti grow more anxious daily as their kids are still in Haiti. The Haiti ARISE staff, Kootenay Christian Fellowship staff and Mt. Sentinel staff have all gone to great lengths to contact anyone we can in Parliament, Foreign Affairs, DART and airlines to mobilize their evacuation.
We have been given confirmation from more than one of these sources that help is on the way. In the meantime, we all hold our breath. We received more communication from Haiti today that indicated they are still experiencing aftershocks and everyone is on edge as tension mounts, prices rise and food and supplies become more scarce. Looting has begun as desperation begins to take over. Pastor Jim Reimer reported that $10,000 was stolen from our compound, as someone broke into our finance office while the building was unsecured. This was money that was withdrawn for the team's expenses just before their arrival- it may seem odd to have that much cash on hand, but in a place like Haiti when the country is functioning, getting to the bank is difficult. I know it is hard to imagine there being any good news during a time like this, but there is... in light of such terrible destruction and depravity, the generosity of the Canadian and American people has been astounding.
The whole world is being moved by Haiti's overwhelming, traumatizing plight. It has been too long, taken too long for North America to wake up to the condition of our dear neighbor Haiti. Finally, though at such a horrible cost, the world is rallying behind a nation that has been hopeless and helpless that we pray will result in a true rebuilding. The loss of life, a severly precious price... but we cannot lose hope. We must help to restore, rebuild, renew! There are fundraising efforts happening all over the nations on behalf of this 10,700 sq mile island. Just for Haiti ARISE alone, today Urban Thrift of Calgary held a fundraiser bringing in $5,800 CDN for Haiti Relief. Next Saturday, Jan 23 a Benefit Concert will be held in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan expecting to bring in $30,000 CDN. In Aberdeen, Washington, churches are rallying together to hold a Banquet Fundraiser in the coming week. As well, donations have come in online from as far as France and Hawaii totalling so far to more than $15,000 US. And the government of Canada will be matching all of these donations $1 for $1. We are working now on strategic plans for relief and rebuilding in partnership with Hungry for Life, in Chiliwack, BC as well as on the ground in Haiti with the neighboring missions of Grand-Goave: Lifeline Christian Mission, Mission of Hope and Heart to Heart.
Again, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT, PRAYERS AND SACRIFICE OF DONATIONS. Please continue to give. We may very well be able to rebuild a NATION!
A Day of Good News
I’m going to try and send pictures on but we have very limited internet. Our sattelite dish (at Haiti ARISE) is broken so we have to go to the internet café and well you can imagine it is swamped. We are in good spirits considering and I have stories to tell when I get home! Pray that we stay safe, healthy and that we will be able to leave. You have more info then we do. We know Port Au Prince was devastated. We don’t know if airlines are coming in... The two ladies from Chile that were staying with us had a helicopter come and take them home. We took the students on a walk around to the goat farm property and community area. We met a lot of people who lost everything. The students collected all the extra money they had to buy food for the locals. They collected over $2500.00 to buy 4000 lbs of rice. The rice feeding became chaos, crowds came from everywhere. Some people we very angry, some trying to get seconds. Most of the students went back as they could not handle the chaos.
Sincerely, Alex Atamanenko, MP, BC Southern Interior"
by for now, marc"
A Small Word... Awaiting Details
I just received a very brief email from Haiti, a friend at the other mission in town whose internet is functioning, that the team there are all safe. There is damage though to our Technical School building. The walls are cracked and some broken. As well the perimeter wall around the property is all fallen down.
I have been waiting for word all day and to just get two lines is really frustrating. But we must trust that God has it under control. The important thing is that everyone is safe. We are praying for lines of communication to open up and I imagine that the team will be mobilizing to see what kind of aid they can provide. I have so many questions running through my mind and have been receiving calls and emails all day long from anxious parents, friends and family wanting to know more. We are all in the same boat though, having to wait. I am reassured by the verses in Psalm 62:1-2 that says "I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken." There were reports that in the stillness of the night yesterday, the only sound heard in Grand-Goave were voices of those singing to God, praising and waiting on Him for help in this time of trouble.
We want to say a sincere thanks to all of you who have already begun to respond to the plea for Disaster Releif Aid. We have had online donations coming in from all over the US and Canada. This will really help us meet the people's needs. Marc is there with a team of 24 from Nelson, BC. All are safe. They had made it to Grand-Goave from the airport in PAP just before the earthquake hit yesterday. They spent the night in a school bus for sure of safety at another mission in town, as our own facility may have been compromised by the quake. Marc, the leaders and team are back at our compound now, assessing the damage and we are awaiting with abaited breath for any news that may come. Please pray that God will open the lines of communication!! And that our friends and young people who are living in PAP for school or other things are all safe!
We will continue to keep you posted online here daily as we know more.
Haiti Shaken By Earthquake
Urgent prayers are needed, as a 7.3 earthquake hit Haiti today, just 15 miles west of the center of Port Au Prince, not far from Grand-Goave. News says that a part of the capital palace has collapsed as well as a hospital and I am sure many homes. Marc has been back down in Haiti since January 1 as we just finished up our Pastor's Conference.
Today a team of 24 from Mount Sentinel High School and Kootenay Christian Fellowship in Nelson, BC has just landed in Haiti, not long before the quake hit. Marc called when the shaking began to let us know what was happening then, but he was not able to give much more info than to ask us to send out urgent prayer requests for the country. We are hoping and praying that they were already back in Grand-Goave when the shaking began. Port Au Prince is undoubtedly in rubble and trumoil, as power lines and cell phone towers are down, roads are ripped up and many homes have collapsed and slid down mountainsides. We do not have more news from Haiti ARISE yet as we cannot get through, but will keep trying and be sure to post updates as we know. Lifeline Christian Mission, who is also based in Grand-Goave, has a post on their site as well that they are all safe, but have damage to their perimeter wall and block houses- fortunately all of their main buildings were constructed with stone and rock and are standing strong. It makes the scriptures just come to life even more. The house must be built on the rock! We are praying and believing our compound is safe. It is for sure that disaster relief aid will be needed, as we wait to hear of the condition of our community's homes and families. You can donate online or send a donation with the contribution form to go toward Disaster Relief. We will keep you posted!
...Praise God, an update has come for us. Lifeline Mission has sent us this email:
Marc brought the team here to Lifeline because of some concern about the safety in the structure at your mission. They are all fine...sleeping in ourbuses tonight and someone (probably Marc) had brought them chicken and food to eat. They are doing Ok and I expect they'll make it back to your place tomorrow. But everyone is fine!
It's a mess here, Lisa...unbelievable! Grand Goave people swarmed our grounds because they are all afraid of their homes. They know it's safer to
be outside during this type thing. We learned that there has not been an earthquake in Haiti for 250 years.
PAP is devastated but they say the airport did not suffer much damage. They canceled all flights for tomorrow but I don't know about after that. One
Haitian came here who had gotten treatment at Petit Goave by the U.N. for a severe scalp laceration. He said the mountain is not passable and that he
had to walk here. That's all I can think to tell you now. Oh, and there's no cell service. We have satellite internet!"
So please keep everyone in your prayers!