Gressier, Haiti

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Wednesday March 31, 2010 Updates and Prayer Request

The month of March has been a hectic one! A few teams have come and gone and much has been accomplished. We are so thankful for the willingness to serve and the kind remarks by the teams that have been here!

In April the transitional housing projects will start back up. We have finished two so far. God has provided enough to do 5 more!

We will post photos of Zet's house soon. It is small but she loves it! There wasn't much room to build, but at least now she and the baby (1 yr old) are out of the rain and the open air! It's a great relief for her!

We are excited to have Gail Bright of Birmingham, AL taking on the new "Daniel Project". This is a project for new and expectant mothers and infant care. Daniel has really wanted to begin a ministry for this group, so we named the initiative, "The Daniel Project". How wonderful to begin to impact this vulnerable group!

We are committed to continue the postings here. We want to keep you updated about the progress. We would love to get the video from Living Hope on the site too. If anyone knows how to get it, please email us! The video is wonderful!! We love you guys and miss you already!

Prayer Requests:

Today Roland, Eddy and Matthew all went to the doctor. Each of them has been ill. They did some tests today, but will return tomorrow for results. As many of you know, Matthew has been very sick. Most likely it is malaria. We pray he will get what he needs, have a quick recovery and have no long term problems. Join us in praying for their health. They are so important to us and if you have had the pleasure of knowing them, we know they are important to you too!

Monday March 29, 2010

Norma is heading home today. Please pray for her safe travel back! I know she has been missed, but the work she is doing is so important.

She had some comments about coming home:

We will be coming Home Monday 29 for a rest. I will probably not be able to sleep.I may need to set up a tent in the front yard just in case!

Being able to take a shower without waiting in line, being able to find my toothbrush, and soaking my feet may seem strange to me. I don't know if reentry training I have had will kick in. Many of the girls from College Station are still crying.

Rita is already missing the JH team. She will struggle pray for her and Daina. My challenge is much still to be done. But, even the Lord rested!!

More later.


It's a well deserved trip back home for some much needed R and R! After 9 weeks in Haiti, she has seen a lot! Somehow, she never loses her energy and enthusiasm! She has been tireless, as have the other JH team members, in their faith and love for Haiti and their desire to serve God by ministering to these people!

Saturday March 27, 2010 Christain Life Center and Teen Challenge

The team from Teen Challenge and Christian life Center has been here this week. They will finish tearing down the doctor's house before they go! The mother of the young girl killed in the house had not been to the house since the quake. She was there this week to see the work.

The Doctor and his wife, are so grateful that we cared enough to help them start again. What good neighbors they said we were! They did not know what they would do,now they say they will begin to work to rebuild. Of course we are only the hands of Jesus who is supplying the funds and people. Thank you for the answered prayers to help provide this relief!

This is one example of the work here that is so important. Many Haitians are still in shock and don't know how or where to start to rebuild their homes, their lives, even their country. These teams have hit the ground running to provide a much needed "jump starts" to so many worthy communities and families! We are so grateful!

The New Life Team paid for the dump truck to haul off the debris. They also donated food to the orphanage. They have paid for some repairs to JoyHouse. They have donated around $6000 to help here! We are so thankful for all they have done to help!

Additionally, they have done many things to bless Gran Savon. We hope they will be able to go there and finish putting tents for some people before they leave.

We have been challenged much this week saying good bye to more friends. Teams have come and gone. I know I will get home and reflect on the wonder of it all. But for now, we are to busy to think.

The heat has been exhausting. We are still buying and hauling 15-5 gallons bottles of water 2 times a day, plus 10 cases of small bottles for the teams and the workers.

One young man on this team is from Dominican side of the island. His name is Byron. He speaks Creole and he is a remarkable young man. He is studying for his PHD at University of Arkansas (Go Hogs!).

Byron is planning to come back to Haiti and work with us. I have grown to love this young man as he has served tirelessly, even while sick,to make a difference. He has been a real hit with our JH team. He has spoken to me about his future and how Haiti will fits in.

Another young man, Curtis, came to me to talk. I was overwhelmed by what he had to say. These are just some of the fine young people we have been blessed to work with.

God is moving in this place.


Friday March 26, 2010 AM post

Roy Downs and our Haitian workers finished one transitional house yesterday. It was for Zet and her small baby (pictured above). She is so proud of it. She wanted to leave early to go fix it up!

Pray for health. We have had some sickness in our troops. We had a great track record but the conditions are very difficult and it's hard to to protect everyone from the stomach ailments! Pray we can get and keep team members healthy!

Gail Bright from Birmingham, AL has agreed to be Director for the Daniel Project.!! What a great blessing!! Gail we are so excited to watch this develop!

We will began working on Benito's transitional house soon. Roy and Joe left on Thursday! Roy has been such a blessing. It's like saying goodbye to an angel!

I don't know how God is so good to us but He is!!


Wednesday March 24, 2010 Faith &Works

James 2:15-16 If a brother or sister is without clothes and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well," but you don't give them what the body needs, what good is it?

Much of the media and the world have moved on with life, and the problems in Haiti seem to be behind them. But, for the people of Haiti, those problems are still very much a part of every minute of their life right now…and will be for many days and months to come. Thank you to all who have donated to Joy House over the past couple of weeks…God has blessed and Joe was able to return to Haiti this past Thursday with enough money raised to build SIX houses!! God bless those who have given sacrificially to help the people of Haiti. Most of the conversations we have had with Daina and Rita over the past week, it was either raining at that time or there had been rain overnight. These houses are going to get people out of the rain and save lives. Joy House has also just finished building a latrine for the tent city in Gran Savon. This will be a big help in preventing the spread of disease in a small area where there are a lot of people living so closely together.

Two teams – one from Living Hope Baptist in College Station, Texas and the other from Baptist Collegiate Ministries in Oklahoma have spent the past week working at Joy House, and when I say work, I mean WORK! They were able to completely clear away all of the debris from the church and also helped feed people from Jesus Church at Santos, Gran Savon, and Pastor Edie’s church. Thank you teams for all your hard work and for accomplishing SO MUCH in such a short time!

Pray for the current team of 23 that is from Northwest Arkansas as they continue the work at Joy House this week. They will continue repairs and construction as well as helping with the doctor’s house, which is right next to the compound.
Continue to pray for Norma and Rita as they are both not feeling well and pray also for Daina. Pray for their strength and endurance as they will be providing meals for the team this week.

Thank you everyone for your prayers and gifts…for being a part of what God is doing in Haiti. The passage from James asks the question “what good is it if we talk, but don’t do?” Well, so many of you through your prayers and giving have not just had words, but actions behind your words…Thank you. Matthew 25:34-40 describes you well. “Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what's coming to you in this kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundation. And here's why: I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me a drink, I was homeless and you gave me a room, I was shivering and you gave me clothes, I was sick and you stopped to visit, I was in prison and you came to me.' "Then those 'sheep' are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?' Then the King will say, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.'

Thank you for reaching out to people who have been “overlooked” for a long time.

John & Kay

Monday March 22, 2010 Living Hope Baptist Church from College Station Texas

This group was amazing! What a great group of committed Christians. It's so exciting to see, not only these people and their commitment, but the commitment from their friends, family and church family too.

Zig Ziglar says "When you see a turtle on a fencepost, you can bet he had help getting there!!" Well that's how we feel and we saw that with this group too! They had people gather for over 1.5 hours one night to pray!

How wonderful to know the people they are and the people they have surrounded themselves with! We know about surrounding yourself with great people! And even more important, surrounding yourself with prayer!

Before anyone comes to Haiti with JoyHouse, we always ask that they have at least one prayer partner to pray for them while they are in Haiti! We know how important that is. This group had many people willing to lift them up in prayer! How wonderful!!

This group of people from College Station were so sweet, kind and willing to help! They had such a love for the mission! They were not selfish or spoiled. They were there for one thing, to glorify God and work hard for the Kingdom. They did just that!!

Parents be proud of the young adults you have raised. They are among the best we have seen! We are excited to have this church sending another group later this year! We can't wait to see what God does!

This group evangelized, distributed food and worked hard every day! We are so thankful to them! We serve a great and wonderful God. Thank you to this team for everything!! It was such a joy to have you all here!!

March 21, 2010 Oklahoma Baptist Collegiate Ministries

What a great group of young men! We were so privileged to have these young men here! What a fabulous group of guys!

They are all such gentlemen, sweet, kind and so handsome! They were such low maintenance, we hardly knew they were here, (except for the tremendous amount of work they are doing). What an absolute privilege to work with this great group of guys!

2 leaders and 8 young men who answered a call from the Oklahoma Missions Board for Disaster Relief Workers to go to Haiti for Spring Break. Many of them met for the first time at the airport on their way to Haiti?.Yet, they managed to all work together so well!! Isn't God great!!

There are morew than one universities in Oklahoma represented by this group. I had the priviledge of speaking with Andrew Wade, from the group. He said that "because they were considered disaster relief they knew what their mindset needed to be, but they weren't sure what they would be doing or how they would offer relief, but that's what JoyHouse is all about right now, offering relief!"

When asked what he would take away from this experience, he replied " The people. I will be thinking about the people. They are so selfless. We can learn so much from these people."

I tried a few times to talk to Cale Freeman from the team, but we got disconnected every time. We have determined he has a "magnetic personality" because we got cut off every time!

Norma says "If you ever have any doubt or lose faith in our next generation, you need to meet these men. They will help restore your faith"!! Just like they have been restoring the faith and ministering to the people here in Haiti!! Thank you Oklahoma Baptist Collegiate Ministries for providing such a committed group of Christain men! Know that you made a difference!! God bless all of you!! Come back soon!
Here's a photo of the front of the church. The gate is just out of the photo to the right. You can begin to get an idea of what a HUGE job clearing this debris would be!

Notice the big ship offshore! Thank goodness for our troops that helped in Haiti too!

Saturday March 20, 2010 Construction Updates

Well, we had some silence but today, thanks to SKYPE, I finally got through to the Haiti phone and talked for a few minutes. We hope to have the computers set up on SYKPE when we return. Hopefully, that will help with communication.

A few updates for you:

First, the church demo is complete!! What an amazing group of people from Texas and Oklahoma. At the risk of offending others, we LOVED these teams!! Thank you so much for just being who you were here in Haiti!

The teams started demo on the house next door (the doctor's house). They said today it was about 80% complete. The doctor, his wife and 10 yr old daughter were home at the time of the earthquake. The doctor was hurt, and his daughter was killed. I don't remember hearing any details the wife. One of the boys at JoyHouse, Fito, was finally able to get the young girl's body out of the house. He carried her down the hill to her mother and father.

This is the kind of thing that starts to heal a family overwhelmed with grief. We can never replace the loss, but we can show God's love and provide a helping hand. This is such a great act of kindness and Christian love!

In addition to all this, they have finished a few more columns and some work inside JoyHouse. They are also in the process of completing some work outside the house. What a blessing these teams have been!!

They worked together so well. They accomplished a great deal while they were here! We are so thankful for them!

Roy and Vic have been just SUPER!! They have organized the work and kept the teams going!

I spoke to Roy tonight and thanked him for all he has done. He mentioned that every time he talked to his wife, she commented on the blog and said she really enjoys hearing about all the work that is going on in Haiti. Thank you for reading and thank you for your comments!

The purpose of the blog has been two fold:

1. To share what we are doing in Haiti. We want to help you feel a part of the ministry share the blessings too!

2. To keep Haiti on your hearts and minds!! As Andrew Wade, from the Baptist Collegiate Ministry said tonight on the phone, "Even though the earthquake is over, the problem isn't over".

We will keep making frequent updates! Thank you for reading and thank you for GIVING, GOING and PRAYING!!!

Thursday March 18, 2010

The food distribution went really well in Gran Savon with Benito's church.
The team from College Station went to Gran Savon early and were then able to evangelize and had people saved. Not sure of the number but I think 3.

The Church is almost demoed! These guys from Oklahoma have stayed on it everyday. It is hard work but they do not complain. Many of them have said it's the hardest they have ever worked. I know they will be tired when they get home, but it will be a good tired!

I hear a lot of conversation and laughter in the other room tonight. It is a good sound. (Now you know how JoyHouse gets it's name!)

We fed 92 today with the Haitian workers, the Americans and others who are helping carry off the rubble. Thank goodness for Rice and Beans!

Some of the people in the community come to watch or even to help. We hire a few of the local workers. The only salaries we pay are for the Haitian workers. Paying the workers is very important because it give them a sense of accomplishment and hope.

The monetary donations made to JoyHouse are spent primarily in Haiti with local merchants too. This is also an important part of helping get Haiti back on it's feet. If we can get the local merchants going again, it will help to create jobs and that's good for Haiti.

We are making great progress on the Mission Center. The entire building will be enclosed by the time I go home (end of March) or at least that is the goal.

We also gave out blankets to babies made by a lady who has taken this as her project for Haiti. We are blessed by the people who have special interest and put their actions to work for the people in Haiti.

One last note, we had a question about the condition of the man from Gran Savon with Typhoid. All I know right now is that he is still in the hospital in Leogane. I will try to find out more and let you know at another update.

More later.


Wednesday March 17, 2010

The first day of food distribution went well. Many of the Joyhouse team said it was a very good thing that we did. We had several show up without tickets, but they did not cause any problem when they saw it was ticket only.

Jeri Lane's little girl she sponsors came for her family. Ticket in hand, smiling ear to ear. She hardly ever smiled before Jeri got involved in her life.

We go to Gran Savon today. Pray for all to go well there. Friday the College Station team will go to Carrefour and do a lot of one on one with Haitians. Pray for us.

I noticed there's not much chatter and singing at night after we get in our tents like before. Everyone is totally exhausted! But the faces still reflect the Joy of it all.

Ron Harris' Teen Challenge team will be here tomorrow. Pray for the addition of 24 more people for one evening. It's goign to be crowded! Joe Patterson will be arriving with them. Then, the next day the College Station team will leave.

Hot dogs for supper last night! They were a big Hit!

We have many things happening in construction. The church is almost cleared!! I can't really believe what God has done. Thank you teams!!!

The people around the area come to watch everyday. This is a good thing, because it will encourage them to move forward.

More later,

Tuesday March 16, 2010 Prayer Requests

We have a request from friends and family of the College Station, Texas team to provide some prayer requests for JoyHouse and the teams there currently. We are excited so many people are lifting us up in prayer. Thank you! Thank you!

Pray for the water situation. With so many people, we are buying water constantly. This is very time consuming and expensive. Pray that God will provide a long term solution to the water problem! We can use the well for bathing and it is safe for drinking, but the taste of the water (not actual bacteria) keeps people from being able to drink it. This was not the case before the earthquake.

Pray for the food distribution. We pray that everything will go well as that begins today at Jesus Church of Santos, Wednesday in Gran Savon and Friday in Carrefour. Pray for salvation in these areas as the teams minister to the physical and spiritual needs in these communities.

Pray the unity of the teams continues. We are so fortunate that everyone here, even under difficult conditions, is getting along so well.

Pray that everyone stays healthy. Matt Palermo has felt a little sick this morning, but seems much better now.

Pray for the spiritual renewal of all teams members. Pray for the JoyHouse team and the Haitian team members there helping and staying at JoyHouse. Eddy, Roland, Matthew, Reginald, Benito, Charlie, Fito, and Samuel.

Pray for Norma and Joe. Joe will be traveling to Haiti Thursday. Pray for safe and uneventful travel for him. Pray that they will continue to have the same resources, strength, focus and perseverance that is required to continue to answer the call at this critical time in Haiti.

Pray for the continued spirit of revival in Haiti.

We appreciate the prayers of the faithful who answer the call to GIVE, GO or PRAY!! Your continued support is so critical. Thank you all!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 Food and Water Update

We are so thankful to the team from Living Hope Baptist Church in College Station, Texas!! They brought money to purchase $3000 worth of food to distribute to the people in Jesus Church of Santos and for Benito's church members.

Reginald and Benito, the pastors for these two churches, have worked for days to get tickets to the most needy in the churches. How exciting to be able to help meet this tremendous need! Many of these people are so hungry. It's beyond description! Even in this despair, we know God is working to help meet the needs of these good and faithful people!

Reginald and Benito have been working hard to find beans and rice to buy! They already brought in 3 trucks worth and went back out again. Many times, buying anything in quantity means buying from several places. Most places will have only a small amount or will want a higher price if they see you want to buy too much! Pray they will be able to get good availability and make each dollar go a long way!!

The bathroom for Benito's church is now being used. There is a little more work to be done, but it is usable. Norma said that many people have walked a long way just to say thank you for this facility. We knew it would meet a serious need in that area! We are so grateful to the people who helped with this project!

Monday March 15, 2010 Construction Update

Well, midway through the day and Norma says "what an amazing group of people"! Who knew that Texas and Oklahoma could work so well together! About one third of the church has been demo'd so far! That is great progress! The water tank for the kitchen is progressing well too. There is also work repairing the damage inside JoyHouse in preparation for teams arriving throughout the summer.

The Oklahoma group with Denny Freeman and Charles Lillard from Baptist Collegiate Ministry in OKC is a group of ten strong Christian men. We know many of you are watching and tracking their progress and we want you to know they are really doing a great job! They have been a huge help in the construction projects so far.

The Texas group from Living Hope Baptist Church in College Station Texas aren't slackers either! Butch Smith and the group he is with have jumped in and they are working hard to help with these important projects too! We have another group from this church coming later in the summer! We are so thankful for them and their willingness to serve in Haiti during this difficult time!

Many Americans are so surprised at the Haitian ingenuity! If you have ever been, you know how cool it is to watch the way they work construction and are often able make something from almost nothing! It's truly a learning experience for most of the Americans. I'm told they are watching some of it in amazement today too! No matter how they make it look, the work is very hard. We know it takes real commitment and a servant's heart to be in Haiti, even in good times!

I am hearing they look like their own tent city with over 21 tents right now! I know with the 20 Haitian workers, 20 JoyHouse people and 31 Americans, they are certainly busy around JoyHouse today!

Sunday, March 14, 2010 **revised**

Monday we start to demo the church. The Oklahoma Baptist Collegiate Ministry Disaster Relief Team men are so nice they are ready to work.

They had to spend the night in the airport. Their leader Denny Freeman is ready to go with hard work for the kingdom.

The College Station team are beautiful people. They sang special music for the service at Jesus Church at Santos today. Butch Smith preached on Daniel and it was awesome! "This world is not my home" was a big part of the message. It helped me to remember why I am here. He also spoke on being "convicted of having a personal relationship with Jesus" if we were on trial. The Haitians loved it.

We prayer walked today. Both groups went to the beach to cool off a bit. The heat has returned to us.

We look like tent city here on the grounds. I think we have 21 tents. It is nice to have all the Americans.

Roy and Vic are miracle workers. We had a water sisuation and I did not even have to deal with it. I am so grateful to the KING of KINGS for these 2 men. Vic leaves tomorrow. I will be sorry to see him go. Chris is leaving tomorrow also. We will miss him.

I am usually in my tent by this time but many here for showers, so I am up a little later.

We had brown beans and spam and instant mashed potatoes for Sunday lunch. Tonight, we had PB & J. The young ones liked it.

We are so grateful for those at home for thier prayers and donations. We have started laying the ground work for the transitional housing. Well, I am very tired tonight. I will write more later.


Saturday March 13, 2010 Thank You Grace Point Teens!

Copied from Grace Point Blog!

On behalf of the 600,000 homeless people in Haiti, thank you to the Youth Ministry of Grace Point Church. During their annual discipleship weekend (One Weekend), Jn. Claude was able to share his testimony about a friend who gave him $50 to help him with his personal needs because he was in Florida during the earthquake and could not return home to Haiti. He had no source of income and did not have any money at all. Instead of using the money to take care of his own needs, he sent the money to a pastor friend in Haiti to help him meet needs in his church. Jn. Claude later learned the pastor was able to feed 60 people who had nothing to eat following the earthquake!

Following John Claude's testimony, the Holy Spirit laid it on the hearts of the students to take up an offering to help build transitional shelters in Haiti. As a result, they raised over $2,000 which will build 2 shelters for families who desperately need them! Thank you Wade Bryant for being sensitive to the leadership of the Holy Spirit. By allowing the students to be obedient to God's call on their lives, He has used them to bless people who are in desperate need!

Following is an email we received from Kay's sister, Daina Kennedy who has been in Haiti for 2 weeks and is currently seeing the overwhelming needs first hand. Please prayerfully consider what she has to say and ask God how he would have you respond to the needs.

John & Kay

NOTE FROM DAINA: (currently at JoyHouse) The destruction here is massive. The poverty level was great before the earthquake but now it’s completely overwhelming. The average Haitian makes $30 a year. We have children that come to the gates of the compound we are staying in and beg for food every day. Food is hard to come by in Haiti, even for us Americans, however because we have money and transportation we are able to drive the many miles it takes to buy some food. We see UN helicopters and transports taking food to the south of us and into Port AU Prince but nothing comes to Gressier. While most of the damage was in Port AU Prince the people living in Gressier have lost their jobs or even businesses in Port AU Prince, which has left them without a source of income. That makes it very difficult for them to buy food.

The ministry that I am working with is Joy House Ministries. It was started in 1996 by Joe and Norma Patterson. They work with teenage orphans, providing shelter, income, and education. Since the earthquake the amount of Haitians that they are housing has more than doubled. For Joe and Norma it is impossible to turn them away. These boys have nowhere to go, so they are working here to help make needed repairs and in turn they are earning a small wage as well as receiving food and shelter each day. For Joy House, feeding these boys is a burden; but not taking care of them is not an option.

While being here I have experienced many aftershocks, plus the rainy season has come early for Haiti. Most, if not all Haitians affected by the quake, are living in tents or tarps. Please for one moment imagine with me what it must be like for a mom and dad living under a tarp with their babies during a rain storm. The other night I laid awake during a storm thinking of the babies that are cuddled by the moms as their dads try endlessly to keep the single 10'x10' tarp from flying away in the storm. Even as I write this, I am having problems trying not to cry. We had a medical team in last week and they saw around 1200 people. Many children were suffering from respiratory problems caused by the rain, cold, and windy nights due to improper or no shelter.

I don't beg people for money; but now that I am in Haiti and have witnessed firsthand the extreme poverty and unthinkable living conditions, I can think of no other way to help the overwhelming amount of people in need. Please, the Haitians need food, shelter, and medicine. Joy House is set up and ready to help with these things but do not have funds. Many organizations have promised large amounts of money to Joy House but have backed out or just have not sent it. Joy House is a non profit (501c3). 100% of the money donated goes to the people of Haiti. None of the money goes to Joe and Norma or for administrative costs.

Please!! go to can make a donation via credit card and pay pal.

Your donation is greatly appreciated and will be put to good use, also I will be here to see the benefits of your generosity.

One person can help and many can make a difference!

Serving God in Haiti,
Daina Kennedy

Friday, March 12, 2010

We are so grateful for Vic and Roy. They are seasoned missions field workers and have really hit the ground running. We are so thankful for what they are accomplishing here. They work so hard and require little for themselves. They are truly a gift from God!

The construction projects are moving forward. We are almost finished with the bathroom at Benito's church in Gran Savon. This will be such a benefit for the entire community. One of the pastors from the church at Gran Savon has typhoid. Please pray for his health and recovery. You can see the need for these construction projects manifest in the health issues all around us!

Prayer Requests:

Please pray God will continue to provide the resources and workers so that the various construction projects may continue.
Pray for His protection over the people here. (Health and well-being of everyone)
Pray for the weather to hold out.(The rains don't come too early)
Pray for the energy and enthusiasm to continue, so that much may be accomplished.
Pray for the new mothers and babies ministry we want to start.
Pray for the resources for the mothers and babies ministry and outreach.

Thursday March 11, 2010

Work is continuing on JoyHouse in preparation for the team arriving this weekend. The projects to get the house ready are going well. If everything continues, teams may be staying INSIDE the house by June! That will really be great, as the heat will become a big factor around that time.

We are hoping to continue the breakdown and removal of the rubble on the church site next week, as well as continuing other construction projects. We are so grateful for the teams coming to help right now. These projects as critical to helping the community get some sense of normal back into their daily lives.

The transitional housing fund has enough for 3 homes, and we are still fund raising to be able to provide more. Depending on timing, we may get to build the first two transitional shelters next week.

Ron Harris brought a great tent last week for Benito and his family, so that has eased one burden in our group. Thank you for that answered prayer! Ron will be back on March 18th with a team!

There has been a lot of rain lately. Saturday it rained most of the day.

Tuesday March 9, 2010

Two of the men who are working construction arrived yesterday from Georgia, so things are busy around JoyHouse today. Early this morning they were finalizing plans for more repairs. The wing walls built to stabilize the house are finished. Those are critical to provide continued support for the house.

Yesterday, a few men were working at Benito's church to do some repairs and build a much needed bathroom. That will help their community a great deal!

Still no food distribution in the areas near us, but we are doing what we can for the people in our churches.

Most of the focus this week will be in preparation for the teams we have coming this weekend! Pray for us as we get ready to receive these teams. Pray for the teams as they travel. As always, we pray for safe travel, and ease of getting through all the travel issues that can sometimes accompany the trips into Haiti! There is so much to do, pray that each of them will be prepared and we will all be effective and able to accomplish much in the coming days.

Friday March 5, 2010 PM post

The internet is back up! Thank you for answered prayers there! Very grateful to Jason for helping get the communication up again!

We saw 1150 patients in 4 days with the medical mission team. There were salvations in 30-40 people, we don't have an exact number from the records yet. Although we saw many sad things, we were able to do a lot of spiritual counseling and prayed with many people.

Overall,We had no problems with the medical mission, even with many people waiting in the hot sun to see the doctors. We felt blessed to have the team we had. Thank you to this team again for giving of their time and talents! Although, thank you hardly seems like enough for these wonderful professionals!

There has been lots of rain at night. We wish it could just hold off for a while. We felt some fairly large tremors today.

Joe, Jason and Kerri leave tomorrow. We have a hard week ahead. Another team will arrive Saturday from OK Disaster Relief. Each team has made it pretty well so far. Pray we can make it as well with the next 3 teams.

Please pray for me to have patience without Joe to make all the decisions I have to make about the construction.


Friday, March 5, 2010

The medical team should be done by now and heading back to the US. No doubt everyone will consider the trip a success. We are so grateful to the many people giving of their time, talents and resources to help in this worthwhile effort.

Norma said there was still no food from the contacts she made at the World Food Program. They had started some food distribution to the Centerville are of Gressier, but still nothing to Santos area. Pray that some food distribution will start in this area. Whether it is this program or any other. We just know there is a tremendous need here.

We are hoping to be able to update the web pages soon with more info on what is happening with JoyHouse. If you have any ideas of things you would like to see, just drop us an e-mail at .

Wednesday Am #2 March 3, 2010 More Updates

After a brief conversation, I was able to get a few more details of what is happening at JoyHouse this week. As many of you know, there is a medical team from Birmingham, AL churches on site this week. Thank God for this team and their commitment to treating the people of the community.

They have treated MANY patients (see earlier posts). The total the first two days approaching 700!! They have many illness that are being exacerbated and accelerated by the living conditions. The dust from the cement, living on the dirt, being in the rain, all of these things and more are combining to make the women and children very vulnerable and many are very sick.

They saw several babies, literally breathing life back into them with breathing treatments. These babies were sick almost to the point of death. The pneumonia is very bad among the babies. There are many cases of dehydration and malnutrition among the young mothers and babies.

There is tremendous need here! I cannot stress enough the need for a plan and the resources to start some kind of young mother programs. These young women need to be counselled and educated in self esteem, hygiene, pre natal care. They need to have resources for taking care of themselves and the baby at least until the baby reaches 18 months.

The team has treated many mothers dying of AIDS and other with sexually transmitted diseases. Pray that God will provide the people and the resources to begin to meet this tremendous need. The living conditions have made these young women and children even more vulnerable. This problem, absent some real solutions, will continue to get worse. Pray for resources to help this growing concern!

Yesterday, they treated a man dying from a severe throat infection. They were able to get him to Leogane to the hospital for surgery, saving his life. Praise to God for this team and their commitment to go and serve Him in this way!

There are 25 tents on the JoyHouse compound! What a site that must be. They have some on the roof and many on the ground. There are still several tremors everyday! Some of them have been a bit bigger lately. I'm sure that makes it exciting for the people sleeping on the roof!

Pray for the the continued health and safety of the team! Pray for resources!! God knows the need. God knows the work that is being done here. Pray for teams to continue to be willing to come and give of themselves and their time and resources to serve! Lastly, pray for the communications issues. It's tough to only get a call every 3-4 days. I know it's hard for Norma and Joe. Hopefully, the internet will be restored soon and we will at least have some e-mail!

Let me say lastly, thank you to the people reading this blog. Thank you for your prayers and support. It is appreciated and received during these times. We don't say it often enough! We take you with us when we go! We hope God is truly blessing you with these updates and the support you are helping to provide through your prayers and contributions to the JoyHouse ministry!!

Wednesday Morning March 3, 2010 More Updates

I spoke with Joe this early morning! He said they have seen over 690 patients in the first two days and there were already over 100 people lined up at the gates this morning!

Pray for the team, their health and well being as they all work to minister to the needs of this community! Pray the resources will hold out and that God will continue to provide! We had planned on roughly 150 patients a day. But this is over double what we anticipated. That confirms the tremendous need in this community!

It's hard for us to believe that there are so many needy within a couple of miles from the epicenter of the earthquake. Just continue to pray that they will have the strength and resources to help meet the needs of the poeple that come!

Tuesday March 2, 2010 The Medical Team

The past two days have been more than busy as the medical clinic set up at Joy House to minister to the people of Gressier. Monday, they were able to treat 340 people, taking the time to pray with many and leading 3 to Christ. Today, they saw people with even more serious needs than yesterday. The medical team, along with Jason, Kerrie, Daina & Rita took some time today to go to House of Hope Orphanage to visit Alice and the kids. As a part of this visit, each child was able to get a check-up...what a blessing to Alice and the kids!!!

Continue to pray for everyone working at Joy House that they will stay healthy and will have strength as they treat so many people with so many different needs. Remember to pray for strength and good health for Norma as she has been in Haiti for several weeks and will stay for several more to come.

Communication has still be difficult, so keep praying for improvements in this area as well.

John & Kay (copied from the Grace Point Blog)

Solo to God February 28, 2010

The team attended worship service at Jesus Church at Santos today which is currently meeting under some trees on the Joy House property because their building was flattened in the earthquake. The time of singing is always incredible during church here, but Diana described it as if each person was singing their own "solo to God." Every person has had significant loss in their lives, most of which have lost their homes; but yet, each person sang at the top of their lungs in worship and thanks to God.

The medical team arrived at Joy House today and spent the afternoon getting things ready to start the medical clinic tomorrow. Please pray for them as they minister to the physical and spiritual needs of the people of Gressier.

Yesterday the team visited with Pastor Benito and his family and were able to give him a large eight person tent to help with temporary housing for them. During the rain one night last week, Pastor Benito and his wife slept sitting up in chairs under their tarp to keep from getting wet. They were very thankful for this tent to help them stay dry in the rain.

Please pray for improved communication with the teams staying at Joy House. The internet device we have is with the local provider and relies on cell phone towers to operate. It is a very slow and only works sporadically. Also, the cell phone service over the past several days has been almost non-existent. We are working on possible high speed internet solutions via satellite dish but most options are very costly.

Praise: So far, we have had $2,200 committed toward transitional housing which translates to 2 1/2 structures! Thank you to those who have already responded to the need. Your generosity will make a huge difference in the lives of the families in need.

John & Kay (copied from thier blog entry)