Up early again for our morning devotions on the roof as we watched the sunrise. We are blessed to be part of such an amazing group! Last night we had a heavy rain and Mark, Luke and Mattias sat out until midnight enjoying the rain.
After breakfast everyone was assigned a job and off we went. Ron and Abe worked on making pews for the church; Luke was Joan's right hand man and she tasked him with using the jigsaw to cut out her creations for the children's school; Lisa, Terry and Wendy painted the main building and some of the Technical school; Ashley, Mattias and Mark worked on painting the signs; Kevin was busy updating the laptops once he figured out how to speak French; Rick, Jan, Emily, Chantelle and Melissa worked over at the Children's Village tiling one of the homes (while having a dance party). Today seemed to be the hottest day so far! Before we knew it we were going back for lunch. We walked through the town and saw all the children going home from school, they all greet us with bonsoir. We see goats on the roadside along with pigs,chickens, cows and donkeys. I wonder how they keep track of all their animals.
Lunch is a chance for us to regroup and have some discussion of how the morning projects have progressed. After lunch many returned to the same jobs. Our work project was at a different site so thought we might just suntan. In the end we changed our minds and got right to work. We were happy to have made this choice as Wade and Marilyn showed up unannounced to see how we were doing (ha ha).
Everyone met back at the complex at 3:30 to freshen up. We learned that Luke had been teaching many of the Haitian kids how to use the power drill and allowing each of them a turn. One of our loyal helpers, Vladimee, was an expert in no time.
We met in the lobby at 4pm and the boys went off to boys club while the rest of us departed on our community visitation with many gifts in hand (toys; hygiene packs; baby clothes) Along the way we passed under many mango trees and palms. Children were quick to join us and hold our hands. We had learned of a family that had suffered many additional hardships and nearly lost their entire home in a recent storm. We stopped their first and our interpreter asked if we could come in and tell them about Jesus. They allowed our entry and Pastor Wade gave his testimony and then we prayed for their family. This is how our visits went. We visited two more homes with Terry and Lisa giving their testimonies. The most devistating of all was our last visit where we truly saw how little these beautiful people have. A very old disabled man and his wife with many children. A grass hut with a dirt floor....and nothing more. We have seen many documentaries on the poverty around the world but until you stand there and see it; smell it; live it...you can truly never know how surreal it is...so hard to articulate and process, let alone try and describe. It was an emotional experience like no other...so hard to see these things when we are blessed with sooo much.
Later we saw two little boys hauling water on a garbage can lid with a rope, much like a sleigh. It was very heavy but they appeared happy with their invention. We watched other children playing a game they made up using plastic lids from bottles.
Upon our return to the compound we found the boys club was having a big soccer game, shirts versus skins. A group of about twenty with Mark and Luke as captains of opposing teams. When it was all over we learned that Luke had become the final king and they all bowed down to his kingdom, while Mark had been crowned the "dancing King" (inside joke). So much fun.
At dinner Rick carved the turkey and we all feasted again as we have at each meal. Delicious. Mattias and Luke were on "dish duty". A bit of free time for the rest.
Our favorite part of the day is the nightly meetings we have on the roof to debrief. We take turns telling what experiences we each had during the day; we pray and we read the blog and attached comments...you have no idea how important your comments are. Our most popular "commentor" is Erica...thank you Erica, we hope you will comment on ours...we hope to receive comments from others as well.
Debriefings complete, a group of us gather to play cards with "General Contractor" Roy, and share many laughs. Now it is off to bed, anxious for the glories God will share with us tomorrow.
God Bless everyone. BonNuit. Rick and Jan