Monday, January 26, 2009


On Saturday we had a meeting with the parents of the children (three boys) we were taking into our orphanage. They signed the agreement with an X. They couldn't even hold a pen. That's the kind of impoverished life these boys were living. One boy has a mom and a dad. She's crazy and he's an alcoholic peasant who does some farming. The two other boys have mothers who keep having babies and no way to support them. As we told you earlier, Bev Carpenter has been working with the three boys since September, but today, they got to move into their new home.Talk about excitement!

Ti Res showed me his bed and new clothes through excited giggles. He was beside himself. He used to sleep on the ground with no covers now he had a real bed! Ti Res is the boy who laid his head on me when he was so sad and needy. It was that action that brought forth prayer as to what can we do to help the perishing. And today, it's a beginning. I'm so excited I feel like I had a new lease on life. Perhaps it's seeing these boys get a chance at life. I don't know, I just know this is a God thing and with the Carpenters doing the work of it, these boys will have the best of discipline and training.

The house looks wonderful, newly painted white walls, and a brand new built picnic table. Plus the beds wow! It's been worth the wait to see it actually happen. We've rented this house for four years (as the owner kept needing money to complete it). Here's a funny story. The bathroom was a step down from the rest of the floors. Gary thought we should tile the floor to make it smooth and easier to keep clean. Our employee, Joe is a mason so we asked him to do it. He had the tile but then he reported having to buy seven bags of cement. We couldn't figure out why he needed so much until we looked at his tile job. He filled the floor in so that it was level with the rest of the house! You talk about fancy! These boys have a fancy bathroom with an American toilet but now, because of all the cement, the toilet is truly low to the ground. It definitely is a child's toilet!

We'll post some pictures later (I keep saying that) so you can see it as it is today. What a glorious day! Keep the Carpenters in prayer as they venture into this "new thing" and keep the boys in prayer that they will serve the Lord Jesus Christ all their days.

If you read this and want to give to the orphanage, simply make a note when you send the money in. We don't have a budget yet. We had to hire three employees, two to take turns spending the night and doing weekend duty and one to do laundry. The boys get three meals a day and will have the best of care.

I'll keep you posted on how it's going............God Bless you all, Carolyn

Monday, January 19, 2009


Hello, from warm and sunny Haiti!!!!! Winter has struck North America with a vengence. Your emails sound very cold! We got one today from the Horrigans in Iowa, a poem which was quite funny but all too true concerning the winter they are having. Barbara Macleod from Canada was relly happy to be back in the Haiti sun after a very snowy and cold Christmas vacation. We had a missionary meeting yesterday at a beautiful place on the ocean. The young man who has that particular ministry, is surrounded by greenery, lots of land and trees, right on the ocean. What a picture. As I sat there, my thoughts gravitated to winter and the question that always comes: how can it be winter when it's so beautiful here? I'll not belabor this point. I've my share of those frigid days. Of course, when I shiver here and look at the temperature, I'm almost ashamed to tell you that 80 can produce a shiver!!

We are plugging along.....pleased with some things, disappointed with other things. Our cry is always, how can we fix it and make it better. We hired a wonderful woman to help with our pre-school program. She's pictured in the top photo, leading them during the Christmas program. She loves the children and the children love her. We are very blessed to have Elizabeth with us.

We just hired a young man by the name of Richard to help Daniel with his twelve first, second and third graders. He's been with us one week and trying to learn the system. As are people in the US, so Richard is in Haiti, very happy to have a job!

We had to purchase a new generator at the tune of 5000 USD. Ouch! We were thankful the money was there because we'd dealt with the other one, Gary constantly repairing it. One day the washladycame running into the school telling Pastor Gary that black smoke was billowing out of the generator. There was no repair this time, it was ready to crash! Making the decision to buy a new one was not easy but Gary did it!! And we are well pleased. It uses less diesel, gets the battery bank up to charge and life is easier all the way around.

This is Monday and as we embark on a new week, we are reminded that it is Monday. We overslept this morning, reminder number one, then we had to rush around to get everything done, reminder number two. And, here I sit blogging when I should be walking out the door to school. (Ahhh, Monday, wonderful Monday).

Our prayer for you is that today will be the best Monday you've ever experienced and hopefully, I'll have time later today to put some new pictures up. We are well and pray you are the same.
I must not forget to mention the biggest, most wonderful blessing for me. My youngest son Ezra is saved! Gloriously, radically saved! It's a story that I'll tell later when I have more time.
Blessings to all of you!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Beginning a New Year

Gary is in Port looking at generators. The one we have, we bought used and used it yes! It's on it's last leg without being rebuilt (which we can't even begin to put a dollar figure on). Here's the situation. We are without adequate city power and the school has always had to depend on generator power due to infrequent city power. The bottom line is that the generator, in order to keep us going, i.e., the freezer, the refrigerator, copy machines, and lights; is a very valuable and necessary item. But, it's not a cheap item. When we got the used Kabota it was a deal at 1500 USD. We've had it over three years, and with Gary's mechanics, he's fixed and fixed and fixed broken parts. But, in the last several weeks it's been smoking and nothing he does is causing the smoke to stop. So, knowing it's going to break down, he took today to look for a new one. He had to go to Port to pick up Al and Bev Carpenter's luggage that did not arrive when they did and decided today was the day to run all over Port checking prices and deciding on what to purchase.

If I were to describe "run all over Port" you'd get tired before you finished reading. It's an experience like none other. Not only are you fighting traffic, everytime you stop at a light, there is a young boy wanting to dust off your car for money.....of course. Don't try to give them food, it's money they want. As you say "No" they continue dusting and then you are obliged to give them something. The joke is: its against the law to have a dusty car in Haiti. When the light changes you proceed through the crowded streets looking desperately for a business advertising what you are looking for. When you see the ad on the wall of the store, naturally you stop only to find out they have nothing in the store, let alone that which you saw advertised. It takes forever, it takes tenacity and nerves of steel.

So every little while, Gary calls to report where he is, what he's found and what it cost. It looks like we are going to end up getting another Kaboda and they are pricey but reliable. Buying new assures us that the only mechanic who will attempt the work on it will be Gary and that will be our guarantee of a long life for the generator. He found one at 1500 USD but it was Chinese made and not enough amperage. I know nothing of what I'm saying, I only listen to the "boss."

How much money am I talking about ? $5000 plus USD. If anyone would like to help us pay for it, we'd gladly receive your gift! We know God will supply the money because we know that everything we do here is helping other people. While we are going to purchase the new generator (and hopefully he will find one not as expensive as the Kaboda), we see the need for new tires looking at us. If you could see the roads, you'd understand why tires don't last a long time. That's for another day though.

We didn't have school today because there was no gasoline in town (for four days!)and since Gary had to go to Port (our truck and the generator is diesel) we couldn't hire a guy with a truck to take our kids home. And with the generator not operating properly we couldn't get electricity to the school. The electricity the city gives us is so weak, the people cannot operate a television set. Kevin and all the staff depend on us to power their cell phones when they come to work each day.

But we are rejoicing in the Lord as we anticipate this new year. The Bible school is doing well. El Shaddai is doing well. Our kids are learning so much and the Bible school students are preaching the truth as they learn it weekly. Our children at home are doing well. I have to report that my son Ezra is worshipping God!! Halleluia!!! Eleven years of praying and believing that my children are taught of the Lord and great is their peace. Is 54:13. I encourage all of you who are standing for their children not to give up, don't cave in God is listening and working and He will bring them in! This is the year. As I look at my three sons I realize how interested God is in family salvations Acts 16:31. So rejoice in the Lord always and again I say, again I say REJOICE!

I'll keep you posted about the generator.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Pumpkin Soup/2009 is Here

I'm sitting in our kitchen listening to chatter coming from the surrounding homes (believe me when I say surrounding--if it weren't for our walls we'd all be living in the same building), and I kind of know what Haitians are doing this morning. They are eating Pumpkin Soup, a tradition to which they cling. It's an expensive meal but it's one every home prepares and if they absolutely can't, they go to a neighbor to get a taste of the traditional New Year (morning) meal. I asked one of my English students several years ago about the soup and he explained that when the Africans were enslaved by the French, the French had pumpkin soup every year but the slaves were not invited to partake. Once they got their became a must do tradition. I wonder how the recipe changed from the French way it was prepared to the way it's prepared today? The humorous part is that those who prepared soup for the French were none other than the African slaves, thus, it may be the original recipe.
Whatever the recipe I can guarantee you that it is done exactly the way it was learned because in Haiti, recipes are exact. They are in the heads of the cooks but if one ingredient is missing, the meal cannot be made. No garlic, sorry, we can't cook. No parsley, sorry, we can't cook. No Maggai, we definitely can't cook! Over the years we've learned to relent and quit trying to convince the cook that you can use some other spice in place of what is missing or leave it out. It doesn't work. So, each home around us this morning are eating their pumpkin soup by now as they started cooking about 3AM. Gary got up and said he would have slept fine if the pots and pans weren't banging all night. Yes, we heard our young neighbor as she worked in her kitchen (which is outside).
As 2009 begins, the thoughts of improvement bombard minds, with resolutions and renewed desires to accomplish what we failed to do last year. Wouldn't it be great if like the Haitian cooks, we'd get our sights set on the Word of God and never waver from the written word. Sick? Oh, no not me, the Word says: Healed! Poor? Oh, no, not me, the Word says: Prosperous! Depressed? Oh, no, not me, the Word says: Why so downcast O my soul, put your hope in God! That's resolve and were we to walk in it all the time, the beginning of a new year would be a marching forward, in the same mindset as before. How different life would be if we had a track in our brain that absolutely could not be changed by circumstance, conditions, news reports. Like the Haitian cook making Pumpkin Soup having to have ALL the ingredients a must; we would walk in the Word as a must have ingredient for each and every breathing moment.
The church would certainly change and as individuals change would not something we were constantly trying to attain it would happen naturally.
Everything I read outside of the Word says it's going to be dark but God spoke to the darkness and said LIGHT BE! As the light comes, may we say LIFE BE! The life of God as found in the Word of God BE from the first day of 2009 until we walk into eternity.
Happy, Blessed, Prosperous, Word Filled, New Year.......From Haiti, Gary and Carolyn