Saturday, May 28, 2011

El Shaddai Officially Closed for the Summer!

We got up to rain, rain, and more rain on Thursday.  It looked like one of those all day things that are rare but do happen in Haiti.  Much of the time was spent discussing the "what ifs" rather than believing everything would be okay.  And it was okay.  Sweltering hot with the humidity soaring after the rain stopped, we got through the evening.  The kids were excited and everyone sang their songs with joy! 

During the  program, we observed a couple of our older boys taking leadership roles and it was exciting because we've been looking for those who would rise up.   Kerwine had a group singing "Our God is an Awesome God"' as he played guitar.  It was delightful. The humorous part was trying to end.  He forgot how to stop. When he looked over at me, I gave him the "time to cut it off" sign and he slowed it down and ended, no one knew he was having a problem.

It's when you come to the finale of something like a school year that you realize all the work and dedication was well worth it.  As the kids heard their averages and number of PACES they finished, they felt a sense of satisfaction, but the teachers more  so.  You can't be with a group for nine months and not have a sense of pride at accomplishment.  As I looked at staff, I realized there was no way we could have done this without them.  Yet there were those stress times when we thought we wanted to be done with them all.  (Excuse me, but the reality of working here sometimes overrides the mission and you feel like you are banging your head against a brick wall).  One long time missionary said:  Face it!  There is no meeting in the middle between the minds of Haiti and the Western mind.  Words too true and I'm sure if any missionaries are reading this, they are saying "amen." 

For the record, our boy, Junior did 103 PACES and a 99% grade average.  He is amazing!  We look for great things to come from this quiet, skinny kid!  Oliver didn't do badly.  He did 63 PACES (which is over the required 60) and had a 95% grade average.  He reminded me that he was the highest in his room.  He's forever working to keep up with Junior.  I've never seen two boys totally unrelated be so totally brothers.  Olivier is always trying to reach where Junior is.  If it's art, Olivier is getting better.  If it's music, spare me his attempts to sing.  If it's building a village out of mud (a huge past time for them) Olivier is the one covered with mud.  If it's riding bicycles Olivier does his best to go very fast.  They are a delight to observe, not difficult to have around (but teaching organization is a bigger battle than I sometimes want to face).

The beach was a wonderful day for all of them and today we will go to the Montrouis Bible school graduation.  Pray that Gary gets all the certificates completed as well as the program.  He's struggling with it right now.  Typing in French is not an easy thing to do....I'm very proud of  him for doing it well.

Off to dry my hair.  Blessings!

Friday, May 20, 2011

End Of School Year Crunch!

Here we are ready to end the year at ESLC and there is always that rush to get things done on time. Thursday, I worked the testing room because Delson was home sick.  I thought, "nice reprieve, don't have to deal with first graders" but by the end of the morning, I was desiring my post because it was at tremendous amount of work. There were so many kids testing and you know if kids test, the tests have to be graded!!!  Imagine giving three different spelling word tests at the same time.  My brain was dizzy!  Thank goodness the kids know their words well enough that when I said Benjamin's word to Tiga, I got a look of, WHAT?? 
These bikes are worth a million dollars ....for smiles like this. 

Always on the phone and a curious dog or lonely dog?  Whenever she finds you available she's there.

Gary's sermon brought the whole church to prayer and repentance, not just a short prayer but an all night prayer meeting.

When you don't have electricity, you bring your cell phone to where it might be....even at church!

Junior and Olivie praying at church one night, no electricity.

El Shaddai kids practicing for closing program.
We are getting ready for our closing program as well, which will be next Thursday.  Looking forward to hearing the kids sing because they love to sing and they love the songs they are singing.  That makes for a successful event ....I hope.  Beach on Friday.  They are all looking forward to that as well. 

Gary and I preached a crusade in a village church the first two nights of this week.  Hard ground. Very hard ground.  Hopefully the other preachers were able to harvest souls, we were hitting what seemed to be a brick wall.

Pastor Cesar's house is looking quite grand, and almost ready to move into.  Pastor Chery's church is coming up and we are so enjoying the joy he has at seeing this church go up.  Pastor Chery is the most real pastor we've met.  He's not religious, not high minded, never asks for a cent. 

We had money to build a school and while sitting in church one Sunday, the Lord spoke to my heart and said, "Build my house and I'll build yours." Yes, Lord, we will build your house.  So, for weeks now, we've handed him money to continue the building and we are seeing God's house go up, while seeing people get saved and healed, delivered.  The messages  he brings on a Sunday are filled with something that helps us.  Never did I think I would be ministered to in Haiti, after all, we were the ones who came to minister.  I have a whole new respect for the CHURCH and realize that without it, you will die. There is no way to serve God outside of His church.  It doesn't work.  Our lives have truly been changed by becoming a part of the Body in Haiti.  

Junior and Olivier both now have flat tires on their bicycles. How they did that is beyond me, they are new tires and they only ride inside the wall around the house.  Need to ask the youngin's some questions.  But, they were filled with shear joy when the bikes came home.  They had worked and put together their little money to see it happen.  Also, they are building houses, welllllll, mud houses.  Quite the construction, I'd say, complete with trees and cars.  They work for hours on these things. 

As always, I'm in a hurry and if there were a dozen other things I should they've escaped me.  So, I'll try and add some pictures and ask you to pray for us for the next week. A school closing (and that means not only the party but moving everything out of the school to our house so it will be safe over the summer).  Two graduations, one of which is in Port.  So, we have a big schedule and we need your prayers that we get through it all decently and in order.
 (Old pictures, looking back)

Leaving Haiti on June 1st.  Thank you all for every prayer and every cent that allows us to continue in this vineyard. This has been a hard year (what year hasn't ) and Gary is facing knee surgery sometime this summer.  We couldn't continue with out you.  Love you, Carolyn

Friday, May 6, 2011


I have so much on my mind to do right now that I'm racing to get to the place where I can study!!!! Ever been like that.  Desiring to read my new books, desiring to prepare for Bible school but first there were dishes to do, breakfast and lunch to cook.  I'm sure you know the routine.

Olivier and Junior were blessed with new (used) bikes.  What a thrill for us to hear their shrill of excitement!  Of course, they can only ride them around the house, around and around but with Molly (the Rott) nipping at their heels they ride real fast. Clunk! a few accidents but nothing that needed our attention.

I knew it would be an early morning for them and the first thing Junior said, "Can I sweep the yard?"  That's how they earned their bikes and I let them know that their job didn't change just because they got the reward.  So, it was a blessing to hear him ask.  Now, let me preface that by saying, if they have a smooth path, the riding is easier.  It wasn't just a desire to please us with their willingness to work, it was also a desire to have a less rocky area to ride.

In Haiti, rocks are everywhere.  Our "yard" is cement but it's not the kind of cement that you may picture.  It's very rocky, sandy stuff.  Smoother than the road out in front of our house, but rocky nonetheless.

Going to add pictures before internet gives way to the clouds, we are definitely in the rainy season.  Three weeks and we say goodbye to our Haitian family and hello to our American family.  It's always bitter sweet but right now, there is so much on our plate, preaching at a revival, preaching at church, teaching Bible school, teaching at El Shaddai, closing program at ESLC, two Bible school graduations...anyone want to come and help us do all this. We sure could use it!!!

One other thing, September help.  We need teachers.  Anyone good at math?  We can use you.  How about English grammer?  We can use you.  We have two girls coming in, one for pre-school, one for kindergarten.  Does someone want to join them??  We'll make sure you have all the comforts of home, except, air conditioning, hot water, machine washed clothes, McDonald's hamburgers, let's see.........lettuce salads...I could go on but I'm really in a hurry.
Blessings and Happy Mother's Day to all mothers, grandmothers, future mothers.  God is good and a rewards those who diligently seek Him!  Being a mother brings diligent seeking of the Lord and because of that, great reward! 
Love, Carolyn