One of our core values here at Hershey Free is to innovate and take risks (for the sake of the gospel of course, not just for the fun of it :-). Along those lines, working with STEP Seminary in Port-au-Prince, we sent our first medical team to work with the surrounding community there. While they’ve received a lot of construction teams, this was a first. As such, there was a lot of ‘I’m not sure what that’s going to look like’ type of conversations going on! Add to that, this team also has 4 people building a house while the other 4 do the medical clinic…big risk! Well, here are the reports of how things have gone over the past couple of days!!
Thank you for your prayers!
We hit the ground running this morning at the construction site and in the medical clinic….
Even after one day, we have been so blessed with lots of smiles and kindness from the Haitians we are meeting. What a day!! And so many beautiful people!
The guys worked alongside a Haitian construction team of young men who kicked their butts. 🙂 What made a group of 50+ year old men think they could keep up?? 🙂 By all accounts they actually held their own and were able to smile and love on the children and adults who came out to see the Americans for some entertainment.
Two of the men on our team got a bit overheated, but after re-hydrating, cooling off and resting in the medical clinic they bounced back. The heat is a bit oppressive, to say the least. The Haitians seem used to the heat, but it is an adjustment for us all.
The medical clinic saw 68 people of all ages who had vital signs done, saw a doctor and went to the “pharmacy” to get much needed medications (many of which were donated by all of you.) While waiting, a wonderful young seminary student named Akyme spent time talking with the people and connecting, telling them about the love of Jesus. We are rejoicing to hear that two Haitians found faith in Jesus today!
With no translators available, our nurses stumbled through with a touch and a smile and trusted God to use us to show His love as our Creole was limited to a “Bonjour” with a big smile here and there. The people waited hours in their best clothes in the oppressive heat to come in to the clinic, and we were also blessed to hand out crayons and color pages and blow bubbles for the kids.
We are praising God for the privilege to be here in His service. We appreciate your prayers and support!!
God is so good!
The nurses went out to see the construction site before clinic to visit the community. The community and workers are warming up to the construction team and our group is learning so much! Our men are keeping up with the young Haitian workers (no heat exhaustion today….praise God!) and the construction project is a bit ahead of schedule, by the grace of God.
We had translators at the clinic today and they were incredible! We appreciated them even more today after not having them yesterday. There is a lot of infection and illness among the children and women, with a few men, but the people are so warm and loving and always have smiles. Some of our key medications ran out and the coordinator had to go buy a whole new batch of meds. Several people put their faith in Jesus today and the seminary students are making relationships with the community through the clinic and construction.
We love Lauren and Mason (the missionary host family with two beautiful children) and they are taking such good care of us all day and every evening!! It is their 8th anniversary today..Happy Anniversary Lauren and Mason!!! so we are keeping this e-mail short so we can give them some celebration time! They are so amazing!!
We are all exhausted but thanking God for the privilege of being here.
Thank you for your prayers. We are so grateful to be here and to see how God is working with the Haitian people and to be a part of His work here.
We are nearing the close of Wednesday, hard to believe!! The Haitian people are so beautiful and we are thankful for another full day! We are so thankful for the opportunities to love these people….their needs are so great that it is sometimes overwhelming. In spite of that, they are gracious, kind, friendly and thankful. What a privilege it is to work with them and get to know them.
The sun has been shining…oh my, has it been shining!! It’s good and hot…we have learned that being sweaty all day isn’t such a big deal, and boy does the cool shower feel good at the end of the day!!
Thankfully, our guys working on the building project had another day without heat exhaustion. We are indeed getting better about hydrating and resting, and I guess acclimating to the heat! The house is soon going to be done- very exciting! The men have really been working hard. No injuries among any of the workers, and it is indeed a challenging physical location to work in. They have really been developing relationships, talking more with the Haitian men working with them about families, etc. The children just flock to the worksite to watch and have a chance to laugh with and touch our team. Like all of us, they enjoy seeing something ‘out of the ordinary’!
The medical clinic continues to be busy. We are caring for people with a wide array of problems. Today two young people were seen who had severe wound infections that were said to be caused by a Voodoo curse. They accepted our care and we were able to pray with them and will be able to provide follow-up care and some extra love before we leave. We pray that they will understand God’s love to be stronger than all else.
People sit on the porch of the clinic, which thankfully is in the shade much of the day, waiting sometimes hours to nearly the whole day, to be seen. We are all learning some Creole and with the translators, we are managing quite well! The donations are an incredible blessing here, thank you all so much. Our words and photos cannot adequately reflect the level of need, but I can assure you the thankfulness is deep. God has been so faithful to give us the stamina, words, skills and love that we need to work here.
Our host family, Mason and Lauren and kids Ashley and James, are so welcoming and just fun!! We have a peaceful and lovely place to relax, eat and fellowship each evening.
Greetings from Haiti and thank you for your continued prayers!
Construction went really well. We helped pour the concrete floor in the morning. Keith was playing and chasing the kids around-they had a lot of fun.We have been learning more of the language and getting to know the Haitians better.
In the afternoon we fixed a Door Jam, a couple of lights and upgraded the Power Inverter wiring. A young man named Stfort asked for prayer for his unsaved girlfriend. Continue to pray for Enoc a 3rd year Seminary Student as he prepares to go to a remote area to spread the gospel.
The Nurses had a very busy day. There were cases of Malaria, Typhoid, temperature of 105, high Blood pressure, infections and high Blood Sugar to name a few sicknesses. One lady had a very sick boy and said I cannot let him die. Together the Patients, Doctors, Nurses and interperters accomplished a lot and worked together well.
While people were waiting to be seen by the Doctors there was an evangelistic video. Today four people accepted Jesus as their Savior. Praise the Lord for all he is doing.
Dear Family in Prayer,
Our last day in Haiti is coming to an end – we will leave for home tomorrow morning. Today provided a time of rest and relaxation. The women of our team joined Lauren as she taught Zumba at 7 AM, and later Lauren took our whole team for a little tour of the city – this woman could out drive anyone I know in the States! We ate lunch at a restaurant that afforded a panoramic view of Port au Prince, then traveled back to the Seminary. We were struck once again by the devastation of poverty that stretches for miles across this land.
Much of our work here geared toward meeting physical needs – and there are so many! – but just beneath the surface lie intense spiritual battles! Satan is active in this country and spiritual forces wrestle for souls (Ephesians 6:12) … but our God is doing a mighty work here, and we continue in prayer for these people who we have come to love. At least 11 people came to know Jesus this week, and we rejoice with the angels!
It is with mixed emotions that we say good-bye to Haiti and all our new friends here. We have missed you all at home so much and look forward to seeing you and sharing about God’s work here; but God has changed us – He has revealed himself anew to us this week, and we have been broken for the Haitian people.
We thank you again for coming to Haiti with us through your prayers. Please continue in prayer for our safe trip home and for God’s continued work here in Haiti. We look forward to seeing you soon!