You are currently browsing the monthly archive for February 2008.

We had a great view of the lunar eclipse last night!! It started at 9:00 pm here. It was beautiful. We enjoyed sitting outside & watching it. Here are some pics of what we saw here:
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Here are some pics during a Saturday sports & play day we had for some kids from an orphanage. We got permission from QCS to use the campus for this on Saturdays if nothing else will be going on. Most of the kids that came had not been out of the orphanage in over a year. Some two years! They also do not have any grass or much yard/outside area to play on at this orphanage, like many of the orphanages here.

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We loved doing this for them & were blessed by just watching them & playing with them. We fed them lunch too. It was fun but the lunch part is not in our current budget or our original plan; but these kids only get two meals a day & those meals consist of like 3 different varieties: corn meal mush, fish spaghetti or rice & beans. They have fish spaghetti for breakfast often. Sean & I have not been brave enough to try that Haitian meal yet. They eat a breakfast & an early dinner. We found out that morning they had missed breakfast in order to get to our place, plus they all played so hard. We hope to be able to continue this as it was more than amazing to see these kids run & play & laugh & swing, etc. Some of them had never been on a swing before or had so much free safe space to run through & just be a kid. They loved it & so did we! We would love to be able to feed them lunch after a few hours of swinging & playing soccer every Saturday. Each Saturday a different group of about 10 kids at a time will come.

If anyone would like to make a donation to go towards feeding these kids a great lunch that they are not used to getting, it would be much appreciated & enjoyed!! We are also looking for more monthly support to broaden this ministry, even $25 a month from several different people would help a great deal! Think about it, pray about it & thanks for your consideration…

Last week our kids had the week off from school mainly because of a Haitian event called Karnival which is like Mardi Gras here in Haiti.

Sean returned home safely on Thursday from Colorado & Friday we got to go to a beach called Wahoo Bay.

It was wonderful. We had a great day of family fun away from the hustle & bustle of Port au Prince which was so refreshing!

We took Maryann & 2 orphans from her place with us and Reagans 2nd grade teacher too. It was 70 miles one way and exactly a 2 hour drive each way. It was beautiful to get out of the city & see some countryside & “openness”.

We packed up lunch for everyone & lots of drinking water & headed out for a day of fun in the sun:

dsc_0020.jpg common Haitian transportation small village we drove through reagan & maryjenette haitian boaters Easton & Reagan all of us on the lil floating dock except Heather & Sean chloe & banning playing in the sand best kids ever!! C,E,B & R still swimming Banning with starfish common roadside view openness!!

What a blessing this trip was for us!

Our hearts & prayers are with Sean & his family in Colorado. Sean made it safely there late last night; thank you for your prayers. Today is the viewing & tomorrow is the funeral for Sean’s Grandmother. We prayed for them in church today, asking God to use them to comfort & encourage one another during this difficult time.

Things are fine on this end as we venture life in Haiti while Sean is away. We miss him greatly but we are in good hands.

Today church was encouraging, we feel so blessed to have such a wonderful group of people to worship with. It is a small church that ministers to missionaries in Haiti. We are fairly new to this church as we have only been going for about a month now. God knew exactly what we needed as he stirred in our hearts to “try” this other church; although it took us months to actually step forward & do it.

We are so thankful that we can be spiritually nourished in a way that God intended for us & our children personally to be. We are grateful for all of the churches that worship & teach about the truth of Jesus Christ here in Haiti. We are grateful that we are in a country that is relatively safe to even teach the word. Our God is such an awesome God. This morning, I was amazed, inspired & encouraged by what we learned & can apply to our lives ….& it’s all right there in the Bible. Praise God!!

Yesterday I helped serve breakfast & lunch to a group of men from the church that we used to go to. They were attending a seminar called “Men of Integrity”. Their were about 37 men, probably about 80% of them were Haitian men. I thought about how great it was that these Haitian men were doing something that they could do to learn how to improve their lives, how incredible it is that their are missionaries here to provide this for them. These men can take what they learn & apply it to themselves & their families, that they could role model & teach what they are learning to other Haitian men & boys. Changes could be made from this, little by little, changes will be made.

serving lunch oh dear maybe I should just delete this one or fix it!?!?! …looks like a postcard that went through the wash…

Yesterday we walked with our friend Kim (whom also teaches at QCS) to another English speaking church that sits on a beautiful piece of property. It’s about a 35 minute walk from our house.

Yes, this piece of property is surrounded by 10 plus foot cement walls topped with coiled Razor Wire; but in the middle of an overpopulated & very poor large city; it feels like a simple park from back home. It feels safe & it has it’s quiet beauty. Kim & our kids played soccer with the middle school & high school aged youth group. We played on the park equipment. We ran, we cheered for the soccer game. We had blue skies & a gentle cooling breeze!! It was wonderful.

On the walk there, our terrain was uneven dirt roads, paved roads, parts of paved roads, no side walks to broken sidewalks. Busy streets to secluded streets & quiet dirt alleys. Here, litter clutters many of the streets & pathways, although some of the streets looked rather pretty this time.

The smells vary from diesel, to burning trash, to urine & sewage, filth & pollution to food being cooked & an occasional whiff of “fresh” air or the fragrance of sweet flowers, like Lilacs back home.

On the busy streets, we walked by & over several different Haitian women whom you commonly find sitting on the filthy dirt ground against the wall & the street; usually a very small area of about 2.5 feet wide between the wall & were the cars drive by. Typically these woman are very small, frail & worn looking. Their faces tell of the unbelievable hard life they have had to endure. They hold their hands out for money, food or clean water. Some smile weakly but most look desperate & tired.

The street children have quite a bit more energy, determination & smiles but still carry that desperate look of extreme poverty. As we walk, we remember that we are doing all that we can as our individual ministries & hearts lead us and that sadly one person can’t help them all at once. We remember to take one day at a time.

When dusk was getting near, we headed out to walk back home to the Quisqueya Christian School Campus where we live; another little “safe” haven in the middle of Port Au Prince, Haiti. We left the walls & large, metal gate of the church property feeling refreshed after a few hours of innocent fun, sun & blue skies. We walked for about 10 minutes and then got a ride from some other missionaries that we knew.

img_9695.jpg img_9699.jpg img_9700.jpg little boy along the way Kim & Easton playing soccer Banning on the swings img_9726.jpg img_9727.jpg img_9738.jpg img_9741.jpg img_9743.jpg Reagan took this shot of Maryann at church this morning. MaryannReagan is into close up shots, very close up & when you aren’t expecting it, I won’t be posting any of the ones she took of me eating or talking 🙂 Maryann lucked out with this one…

Our friend Maryann (who is a missionary that lives at an orphanage here) spent the night with us so she could have a ride to church with us this morning from our friends, the Hersey’s, that so kindly pick us up & take us to church.

I had forgotten that today was the Super bowl, although at some point I knew when it was going to be. Kim reminded us as she came over last night to eat with us & make cupcakes for today. Another teacher (actually Reagan’s teacher) that lives on campus joined us for dinner too…so Sean, Mom & others who are concerned that we might be lonely, we are in great company.

Knowing that the Super bowl is going on in the states today & all that that entails, it feels like we are in an entirely different world than that one. I’m not complaining though, not today anyways 🙂 as we are feeling very blessed to be here doing what we can.

My best friend Kym in Idaho; as usual, God used you to lift me up & see clearly. Thank you for all that you are to me & my family. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement. Philemon 1:7

…and Debbie, thanks for your encouragement on continuing to blog…I needed that!

To our faithful supporter’s, Thank you; may your hearts know how much good you are doing here.

Sean, I’m waiting to hear from you on how your day went…

For all of us here & living for the name of Jesus Christ, Denise

Emily turned 2 years old yesterday! We love you & miss you Emily. We were thinking of you on your very special day.

Here are some pics of us with you last year when you were “just a baby :)”

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We hope you had a very happy day precious Emily. Tell your Mommy to send us a big girl picture of you from yesterday 🙂

Loves, hugs & kisses from your Aunt Denise, Uncle Sean & cousins Chloe, Easton, Banning & Reagan in Haiti!!!!

We have been out of touch with a lot of you lately. Our internet service has been weak at best. Seems like whenever we go to post or email, it’s down or veeerrrry slooowww….or we’re in the middle of using it & it goes down….

We are saddened by the fact that Sean’s Grandmother passed away on Tuesday. She was a big part of Seans life as a child. We have many happy memories of her life. Sean will be leaving tomorrow to go to the states for her funeral & to be with his family. Our kids & I will be staying here.

Quisqueya Christian School is doing awesome. Their are a lot of positive happenings & improvements taking place throughout this year. We will write another post on that as serving at QCS is a big part of our ministry work here in Haiti.

Although the majority of the kids that attend QCS that are not Missionary kids are kids that are from wealthy Haitian families, wealthy business families or wealthy foreign families. The way Haiti’s “political system” has been & is, these kids will be the ones that will most likely take over the ruling government of Haiti. With Gods help & direction, the people that are here working & volunteering at QCS can have a huge positive impact on the youth that attend this awesome school.

Much of the politics & how things run in Haiti are corrupt. Their really is no middle class. It is extreme poverty or wealth. As a country, their is nothing in place to help the Haitian people that are poverty stricken. Their are no or few jobs available. No social security, no government medicaid, no low income housing, no free public schools, no scholarships for children to go to school unless it is from a missionary group or some type of donation.

Government improvements for Haiti’s infrastructure; roads, electric power, clean water, housing, buildings, etc. is very few or non existent, especially for the poor areas & slums of Haiti.

Many, many missionaries & organizations are here making a difference & helping to improve the lives of many Haitians & the country itself. God willing, these people & organizations hope & pray that their help & efforts will reach the people & future rulers of Haiti. People that will take over this country, take this country & it’s people under their wings and turn it around little by little.

As we approach the middle of our first year living & serving here in Haiti, so much of it is still so overwhelming. Overall things are the same here. We find that we need more sleep here. That our emotions get tired quicker here, that every task that must be tackled takes longer here, much longer; but we also find an incredible peace here. Haiti is a crazy, busy & hard to swallow place at times. Although it is much harder to live here, it also seems & feels simpler at the same time. It’s weird.

A Haitian woman I know that works with us has been caring for an older, (I think 16 year old girl), & letting this girl live with her to let this girl learn some skills & possibly earn some money to get some schooling so she might have a chance in her life with a job & make some money for her family. Well, this girl has 6 younger sisters that still live with her Mom. Earlier this week the Mom died of some sort of sickness. Now this older girl faces going back to her home area to take care of her sisters with no means of how to do it.

Last night at dinner Chloe started a discussion all by herself on how we have so much in America, even if you are poor. All the kids started making some very observant comments about the US versus here. It was wonderful to discuss & witness their thoughts & insights. Chloe then said that everyone in the US should have to come to a third world country & then they wouldn’t be so wasteful & just pretend the rest of the world is fine. We explained that we cannot judge anyone, which, yes, is hard to do; but that many, many people in the US & elsewhere do donate tremendous amounts of money, time & resources to help other countries, and that many people are helping their own countries that they live in.

We also reminded them that the only people that can really be in a third world country trying to make a difference must feel called, lead or have it deeply in their hearts to do so…& that not everyone has that in them, which is ok. It would be much too difficult to live like this & witness so much poverty on such an extreme level if it were not in ones heart to be a part of the process of a solution. God has different purposes & individual desires for every single person, all which are very important, none more important than another. We told Chloe that just because we felt called to be here & we actually feel at peace here, does not mean that everyone should do the same. We really stressed about not judging people for what they do or don’t do. We talked more about what the bible says & what we feel God is asking us to do.

Anyways, many more things were said, it was a neat conversation & God used it to encourage me as I was having a kinda down day. Our children’s hearts are changing & growing. They are learning & understanding deep things about life & maturing in Gods wisdom. Sean & I are so thankful for this.

The needs are endless here. Not wants; but life or death needs. Endless. Too numerous to fathom. Something I never really understood until I got here…

I leave it all in Gods hands knowing I/we can’t possibly help them all and probably won’t even be around to see the overall benefits of what we do accomplish while we are here but I know that we are serving our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ & that He will not let anything we do in His name go to waste.

Serving Christ in Haiti,
Denise & family