Gressier, Haiti

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Friday, February 26, 2010

Here's an example of what a temporary shelter could look like. This is actually better than most of the places people are living. It's also better than what we plan to build, but clearly this person got access to some materials (doors, etc..) Most are still under sheets or if they are lucky tarps. I saw very few actual tents outside Port Au Prince.

If you notice, this one is in a field. You can see that this "home" takes up room where crops might have been growing! You see that a lot now. This results in making a bad situation worse. That's one reason the push is on now to clear rubble and build back temporary shelters in the same areas.

Joe and a few others arrive today! That will be a blessing. We have a medical team that arrives on Sunday and we hope to start seeing some of the local residents that haven't had access to medical care.

God continues to work in the lives of these amazingly resilient people! We are still seeing people come to God. The spirit here remains hopeful and positive. The laughter has returned to JoyHouse!

Thursday February 25, 2010

Kindergarten destroyed near Leogane

Well, we did get some answers about food. Yesterday there was an incident in Gressier. The people of the town blocked a UN convoy that was going to distribute food. For some unknown reason, they had been distributing food in Gressier for the residents of Leogane, but none to Gressier people.

As you can imagine, this caused an issue! Well, now it seems people may be a little more aware of the needs here in Gressier. We got on the "list" as the ONLY NGO (non Government operation) in Gressier now. This is usually how faith based initiatives such as ours are classified.

This means that someone, somewhere will now know that we exist and possibly if they deem it appropriate, we will be contacted about what the needs are and how they can assist. A little vague, not a commitment, so off we go to buy some food for these people. We need a commitment!

It isn't clear, but it seems they were operating under the premise that Gressier (estimates of 50% damaged) was doing ok. Leogane (damage estimates at 90%) was really getting most of their attention. I don't know if we changed that, but there is certainly GREAT need here and in some of the more remote areas. We are currently most concerned about the people of Gran Savon.

The markets have opened back up in many places, but you need money to buy the food. Most of the businesses are still damaged or closed. So, if you were lucky enough to have a job, the business is probably not open. If you farmed before, your field might be overrun now with a tent city or even your family living there instead of close to any buildings or on top of the rubble from your former home. So, it isn't as simple as just going to buy food. We are still a long way from the where Haitians were BEFORE the earthquake.

Pray that we will have an opportunity to direct some food to the people in these areas. No matter how much we want to, we don't have the resources to feed the 35,000 of Gressier or at least 3,000- 5,000 more in Gran Savon. We desperately need help.

Wednesday, February 24, 2020

First, let me apologize for not updating sooner. I am going to try to catch up. The internet has been down for several days, so we have had only phone conversations about what is happening. Today we want to find out what we have to do to get some food for the people of our community.
There has been little or no assistance for anyone in the Gressier area. Not only has there been no food, but there haven't been any medical personnel, except for us in the area either. We are really puzzled as to why there has been no help here! The need is so great!

The plan is to go to the troops in Leogane and see how we can get some of our people these much needed supplies. It's really something that is getting to a bit of a boiling point here. We have been providing food, but we have limited funds and resources. Hopefully, we can get to the right people and change this situation.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Benito has service from 7-12pm every night. Last night a girl came from a long way. At 11:30pm she accepted Christ. She shared that something inside of her drew her to the meeting. They encouraged her to get in a good church at her home village and to share her faith. She said she would.

Today, we had a young man and a woman accept Christ in our service. Eddy had 5 in his church and Benito had 8 in the prayer meeting.

Matthew talked with a young man today after church who was struggling with the service and sermon. I heard them because they were speaking English (how strange).

I could tell the young man was thinking he should get to heaven because his mother was a good person. Matthew brought him to me. I told him what mattered was what he believed. I shared the gospel with him and he said he believed all of it. I am not sure what his battle is, but pray for him.

We took communion today and they sang "Nothing but the Blood of Jesus". It was powerful.

Today was a peaceful day. I saw Princess and the family tried to get them to stay here but they feel they need to be by their home. They do not want to stay inside anywhere. Pray for us.

We Go in Jesus Name,

Saturday February 20, 2010

Friday Wayne left to go back to states. We thank God for all he did. There is much to do yet.
I woke up thinking I would have the deep desire to be home with Joe and feeling sorry for myself because everyone was gone now. But the Lord gave me a great morning!

I woke to the enchanting morning sounds of Haiti. God called me to these people with the enchantment of the Haiti Morning. Today was such a morning, but with a twist. The sounds of the morning were interrupted with helicopters flying over. What a reminder Haiti will never be the same.

Most Haitians are very hopeful of a great future for the country. I am hopeful too. Many believe God has spoken and it is time to listen. Others say it was Satan loosing his grip here.

The prayer I breathed this morning was Lord, please don't let the outside that has invaded this simple culture take away the grace and gentleness of this wonderful people.


February 18, 2010 Rain, Rain Go Away!

It rained very hard last night. Everyone was talking about it this morning. The road was so wet we could not get the bus up the hill today. The rain was so hard last night Benitto and his wife had to sit in chairs to sleep. The challenges here are impossible without the super natural power of the Great I Am.

Today, workers are all over the place drilling mixing cement,and cleaning up debris. We are working on the temporary Clinic now. We hope to see 60-100 people a day. There has been little or no medical care for this community even now, so many days after the earthquake.

In church Benitto had 2 more men who have been saved. Reginald will hold new member class starting tomorrow. We will baptize in both churches next week.

The greatest need now is for food. We feed over 50 rice and beans everyday. That is all we can do right now.

Wayne will go today to Benitto's church and mend the roof so they will feel safe to meet inside again. This is a huge need. They also need a bathroom at the church. Our plan is to put in a bathroom when Roy and Vic arrive.

We hope soon we will have the means to start some temporary housing projects. Remember, estimates for each family for a temporary shelter is about $875-$900. Prayerfully, consider raising the amount for a shelter with family, friends, church, etc... These shelters will become increasingly important as the rainy season draws near!

February 16, 2010 Temporary Housing

OK, we have some preliminary estimates as to what it will take to provide some temporary shelter. Here is a material list:

8-4x8 plywood
20-3x5 tin
5-3x16 tin
whatever Material we can find for sides

Basically, we are talking about putting together a small shelter that will keep people out of the rain, and keep whatever small amount of belongings they have dry. With the rainy season around the corner, this is very important. After the rainy season comes hurricane season. If we can get a few of these together, it will help alleviate some of the suffering!

I think they were talking about concrete floors, but I don't see that mentioned here. I am checking to get further information. The cost estimate is about $875 per shelter. Please consider making a donation towards this effort. It is critical we get some of these shelters built and get these families out of the rain! It is just devastating to the morale when the few things you do own are soaked and you have no place for your family to shelter from these storms!

Sunday Feb 14, 2010 PM

Yesterday it was cool, so I sat on the roof and wrote in my journal. Most of the time we would love this sort of evening in Haiti clouds covering but not now. It rained again last night adding to the suffering of the many homeless.

The day was a continuation of the Day of Prayer and Fasting for Haiti. I understand the media is refering to it as a day of mourning. Believe me that is not so. The church in Haiti is celebrating and showing much Joy in the fact that God has touched them.

Over 200 were saved in Carrfour during the 3 days of prayer and fasting. Eddy's Church had 28 accept Christ in Service yesterday. Jesus Church @ Santos had 2.

The living conditions here are very hard for everyone right now. Staying focused is very difficult. But I see the power of God in the faces and actions of the Haitians as I have never seen before. That is what keeps me going.

Yesterday's church service began with the old hymn "Farther Along" sung, of course, in Creole.
I sang the words in English , "Tempted and tried we are oft made to wonder... Farther along we will know all about it. Farther along we will understand why..." Hot tears rolled down my face as I saw the hope in their faces. Hope only in Jesus.


February 6, 2010 Back in the USA

This is a photo of food distribution at for some church members.
Part of the team has traveled back to the USA today. Thank God for safe travel. We are tired, but encouraged by the spirit of the people of Haiti. What an incredible spirit they have! I never heard anyone complain. I only heard them thanking God for sparing their lives and constantly assuring each other that God will provide.

A big part of the team is still there. We are expecting more people soon. We need more teams willing to come and help rebuild. There are so many homes and buildings damaged in the community. There is so much to do.

Feb 5 2010 Photos

The "new" church. Many of the members are living here as well. Also on the right is Pastor Benito's home now.

Feb 5, 2010 Gran Savon, Haiti

Pastor Benito's home was destroyed in the earthquake. The church also has some significant damage. Many of his members are without homes as well. They are meeting in a field near the church building where many of them are also living now. I have attached photos of their new "homes" and the new "church". We were able to distribute some food, clothes and hygiene items. We gave a few of the widows in the church some rice. Single mothers got some formula and rice. We gave the kids bags of cereal. It wasn't much, but at least we were able to tell them we haven't forgotten them!

Feb 4, 2010 PM

The two young people we took to the clinic are good! They had some additional care and they are both much better! We also has a sick baby brought to us. I think she had a cold and was dehydrated. After some children's Tylenol and some formula, she was much better!! She was so cute!

Feb 4, 2010 AM Leogane, Haiti

Damage to a Leogane, Haiti Building

A Tent City Near Leogane, Haiti

A University Building Under Construction near Leogane, Haiti (was 4 stories)
The damage in Leogane is really bad. Some say there are over 5,000 dead and 90% of the buildings are damaged. I think that it is 90% damaged. I didn't see any buildings without some significant damage. There are some troops outside the city, but I didn't see any search or recovery activities. There are obviously many people still inside these buildings.

Feb 3, 2010 Gressier, Haiti

Today, was a tour of the immediate area around JoyHouse. We found a 20 year old boy, Moi, that had been injured in the earthquake. He had a serious cut on top of his foot. He hadn't received any care since the earthquake. We clean and bandage his wound, give him Tylenol and tell him we will come back tomorrow to take him to a clinic.

Then, a young girl is hurt too. She was running out of her house during the quake and was hit by a car. She had received NO medical care. She was very weak. After cleaning and bandaging her wounds, giving her water and Tylenol, we tell her we will come back tomorrow and take her to the clinic as well.

Feb 2, 2010 Port Au Prince

Tent City near Airport

Earthquake Damage

Today there was a trip into Port Au Prince to the Airport. There is so much damage. I could post a thousand photos, but I won't. We are posting more on the shutterfly site and Grace Point blog too! Also working on videos! Those should be interesting.
Port Au Prince is just devastated bu this Quake. Everywhere you look people are living in the streets or fields. As you travel down the main highway. they have filled the median with make shift houses and tents. They don't want to be near any buildings that may fall from aftershocks. Also, they don't have many other open spaces to chose from. So, they are in the medians. Cars and buses whizzing by! It's so sad!

Feb 1, 2010 PM

Hygiene Kits

We immediately began to sort through everything we brought to start getting it into the hands of the local people. Here is a photo of Hygiene Kits we normally use for our classes. We prepared those along with food, clothes, tents, tarps, medical supplies and other items to began handing out!

The first photo is some of the locals along with our pastors gathering items to distribute to their congregations.

Feb 1, 2010 AM

A complete photo of the church! It's a total loss! If you look closely, you can see a ship coming into Port Au Prince in the background.

After arriving at Gressier, the damage was worse than we originally thought. Work has begun immediately to secure the compound and repair the damage. Many people are counting on us to stay here while they help rebuild Haiti!

So much to do!

January 31, 2010 Haiti

Not far inside the border of Haiti and already the desperation is evident. The basics once hard to come by in Haiti, are starting to feel impossible. This couple along the road gets water from a mosquito infested puddle.

January 31, 2010 Almost There!

Almost through the Dominican and the look of concern is obvious! Tired, but determined we press on!

January 30, 2010 Angels Everywhere!

Miami Airport

The trip started late the evening of January 30, when we realized the snow and ice could prevent flying out of Arkansas, so we drove all night to the Dallas area. 6 hours of driving on ice, 1.5 hours sleep and and quick shower and we were on our way to the airport. After MANY issues finding the right place, we were sent ANOTHER angel from American Airlines that helped us get ALL our bags on the plane and make our flight. As we walked away, we saw her praying over our bags! There are angels everywhere!

Finally arriving in Santo Domingo about 20 minutes early, we only had one more leg to complete! Now, we are stuck on the tarmack while they find a gate. About 1:40 min later, we finally get off the plane! While we are standing in line to clear immigration, a young lady asks if we are going to Haiti, we say "yes"! She hands us $40 and says to use it on whatever! We say "we will" and thank her! There are angels everywhere!
Now, we hold our breath that all the bags make it. We need every single ounce of baggage! Only two bags missing, on to the hotel. We had hoped to get some additional supplies and fill up the bus, but it's so late, we cannot do that. We arrive at the hotel, check in and agree to meet at 5 am for departure. about 3 hours sleep and the last hot shower for awhile and we are off!