Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Blessing

Monday morning after men's bible study I was at our office touching base with everyone and lining up my week. Brett our Field Director happened to mention that our van would need to go to Port-au-Prince to get some paperwork corrected. The plan was to leave on the 25th and tentatively return on Wed. the 28th.

This caught my attention, Jane & I have been trying to get our Haitian drivers licenses completed for the past 2+ years. Our paperwork had been started here in Cap-Haitian but due to the earthquake & other problems, everything was at a standstill.

While seven of us had flown to Port-au-Prince for the day in November 2010 working on our Permis-De-Sejour (Visas), after completing early, we went over to the drivers license center to see if we could get ones there quicker. There we found long lines but were helped by a man that said he could get the process started. They made copies of our current state side licenses and took our information. A month later we found that we would need to return to "Port" for photos and completion.

It all seems easy enough except when you figure $200 US dollars each to fly down for the day along with meals, guide & taxi, it can become very expensive. But now I find that our van is making the trip, that would shave off $400 right away, but 3 days lodging & meals at the OMS Villa Ormiso is still an expense along with a driver/guide.

We spent the week getting things in order here including any required paperwork & official numbers that we might need to finish. Kate Zlotnicki was making phone calls with a former English student now police officer in Port getting everything ready for us on that end. Jane's "Port" paper work had been lost so it was being started from scratch long distance.

We figured that with no glitches and if the van paperwork is completed that we would be making the 7+ hour trip back North on Wed. arriving late afternoon, none too soon as our daughters Gretchen and Marcia are flying in at 9:00AM on Friday.
If things didn't come together the plan was to hitch a ride with a friend or fly back.

On Wednesday evening we heard that the Cap-Haitian license center was once again processing some applications, but it seemed that you needed to know someone that knows someone that knows someone to get in line. Our Haitian paperwork person for the mission had been running a couple of days getting everything on this end in order for us for the trip.

On Friday morning at 11:00 while in a meeting we received a message, "come quickly to the licensing office for your photos" the previous paperwork had been found. We rushed right in and were able to complete our licenses.

What a relief, we now would not need to make the trip to Port, we could stay and continue to get things accomplished here, be ready for the arrival of our daughters and save some much needed support dollars.

We continue to marvel as to how God meets our needs here. We also know how our supporters sacrificially give and how each dollar needs to be guarded and used to its fullest to bring glory to God.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Two Months Have passed and so much has Changed

One of the joys we share on this field right now is having new people here to share the load. Bud, Cindy, Carol and Rick have joined our team and soon Cammie and Sam will be here as well. With all the new faces it has made it possible for our field to do so much more in Haiti. I hear all the time of new visions in all areas of our work. The seminary has plans to grow and better their ways of training pastors and Cowman School has plans to add a high school this next year.

My work here also has expanded. I no longer work with the sponsorship end of Starfish Kids. I now work more with special programs for the children. One program we are looking at is an academic challenge for our schools. This program will set up competitions between our schools at 3 levels. This is still in the works. We will have to raise money to cover the expenses of awards and materials for this competition. Other expenses will be to house 60 students who will attend our version of nationals here at the OMS compound. We will be looking for people who would like to get behind this program in the near future. We still do what we used to call "Jesus Parties" but now refer to them as school evangelism parties. These are parties where we show flannel graph Bible Stories and share the Gospel with the kids at school. We love to give out wordless bracelets to the kids which through colored beads tells the gospel story. We end our party giving our bags that people have raised money for full of school supplies and toiletries.

I continue to try to help our Pastors in the Starfish Kids Program as much as possible. They have so many challenges within their schools. I'm also trying to find time to spend with kids who are not in school including a group of children in the Plain du Nord area. I go there and sit with about 70 kids and read them Bible stories.

On Fridays I have a group of about 22 teens who come over from the Catholic school to practice English with me. I told them I would only do it if we could do it by reading God's word in English and have a discussion about what we read. They love to come and I love to spend time with them. I continue to teach English 4 times a week to adults and share the Gospel with them. I presently have 60 students in my level one and 55 in my level 2.

These past 2 months we have had lots of teams visiting us here. We have had the privilege of taking them out to distribute radios and share the Gospel door to door. I plan to share some of those stories with you in a future blog.

This past month in my spare time I am helping with the reorganization of our clinic. Dr Rodney has new visions and plans for the clinic but before we move ahead we need to do a lot of reorganization and do things to make the clinic run more effective. It is always good to look for ways to do things better and raise the bar for ourselves and improve how we serve first our Lord and then the Haitian people. It is great to see the changes.

Bud has been very busy too. He now has two other missionaries who help share in the maintenance work. Bud handles most of the mechanical work. He continues to meet with several Haitian men three times a week for Bible Study. He was sharing how exciting it is to watch them grow from week to week. His work never seems to end but God is faithful and keeps on showing his power and He provides all that we need each day.

Praise God for all His blessings. Please continue to pray for our needs and my health as I continue to have some digestion problems. Please pray for Bud's needs for parts and for wisdom in some of the vehicle problems we have been having. Please pray for our financial support as well, God has given us all we need for the next 8 months but we are still waiting to see what He has planned for the months after that.