I am so excited to report to you that last weekend, we moved six more families in to houses on the Hill at Hope Center. It is always a glorious day when these families move out of those nasty, dirt floor tents that are crammed in the middle of the noisy city. The moment they walk into their new house, they become overwhelmed with thanksgiving. It’s such a blessing to be a part of it. It’s such a blessing to be a part of EVERYTHING God is doing at Hope Center because He is doing SO MANY amazing things!!
Daniel, our new pastor at Hope Center, takes a picture of Stan Buckley and one of our new residents on the Hill at Hope Center as she receives the keys to her new home. Thank you Lord for Your provision!!!
When Tony told me they were scheduled to move last weekend, I said, “Oh how I wish I could be there to help!!” The next morning I had an email from him with a flight he had put on hold for me. I knew that because he took the time to find a flight that would have me there to help but get me back in time for Jacob’s first round of the playoffs, it was important to him that I be there too. Saying “ok” to booking a last minute flight was a bit scary, but I stepped out in faith that God would provide and I booked it. I am SOOOOO glad that I did. I’m so glad that I have learned not to cramp God up in a piggy bank either! I know He wanted me to go, so I know He will provide me with the funds to cover the expense. I have told so many people that if they are called to go on a mission trip, and they say they are going to go when they can afford it, Satan is going to see to it that they can never afford it! That’s one area of faith I am so glad I have learned obedience in. Anyway, I am very glad I went!!
Miss Marthe, age 82, climbed up in the cab of the JAC truck and waited with a smile, for the move to her new home on the Hill in Galette Chambon.
At the tent city in Delmas loading up the JAC truck for the first trip back to Hope Center.
Moving the families in took two trips, the first of which had us sitting at a stand still on the road for an hour because a large truck had overturned and was blocking traffic…nothing new in Haiti. Then after they finally got the truck out of the way, a guy with a bulldozer decided it was time to do some road construction, so he held up traffic another 30 minutes while he scooped and shoved muddy rock around up and down a 40 yard section of the highway. We finally got through after roasting in the sun for a while, but all of that couldn’t suppress the smiles of the families sitting on top of all of their personal belongings piled up on the back of our JAC truck. It was the first day of a new beginning, and everyone was very excited to get moving.
Truck overturned on the road.
Bulldozer working the road after truck overturned.
Tony meets with Yonnell Hyppolite and his family while neighboring children come to welcome the new family to the Hill.
I also got a chance to work with the two new Hope Center cooks and housekeeper. After they were hired, we discovered not only do they not know a lick of English, but they also do not read or write! We are slowly but surely overcoming those obstacles though, and the fact that they are so appreciative of the work they have been given, the opportunity they have to be a part of God’s work AND make income for their families, and the knowledge they are gaining is so refreshing. They are so eager to please and do their absolute best. Saturday evening, after dinner was done and the kitchen was cleaned, they washed their aprons, hung them to dry, then headed home – a short walk up the hill. I went into the kitchen to check things out, and the first thing I noticed was that it was SPOTLESS. There was not one thing out of place, the counters were completely clean, and food for Sunday was placed strategically on the top shelve, neatly and covered, ready to prepare when they returned. We have had our moments of miscommunication at times, but huge progress has already been made.
Sainte-Vierge and Marie Therese, our new Hope Center cooks are so thankful for their jobs at Hope Center. Thank you Lord for leading us to these two women. Please pray for continued understanding and clear communication as they learn so many new things required with their job. Before working at Hope Center, they had never used a stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, or washing machine and dryer. Life suddenly went from hard but simple, to complicated yet convenient. It was a lot to learn in a short period of time though. They have thanked God over and over again for giving them so much new knowledge….things you and I take for granted. 🙂
As a gift for their hard work, we gave all three of them a pretty shower bag equipped with towel, washcloth, and soap so that they could come in and get a nice hot shower before working each day. You would have thought we had given them all keys to their own brand new Mercedes! They hugged and kissed me on the cheek and thanked me over and over again. Sometimes it’s easy to take for granted simple conveniences like a hot shower with not just any soap but “pretty soap” to clean with. People here have to carry their bath water up a hill in a 5 gallon bucket and find a way to bathe in privacy behind their houses. This is sometimes an impossible task. Realizing this, we decided to bless them with these shower bags and tell them that they are welcome to use the Hope Center facilities. The next day they all showed up early, got their showers, and began their day refreshed. By Monday, when I was preparing to leave, the ladies were busy cooking dinner in the kitchen. When they realized I was going to have to leave before dinner, they grabbed me by the hand and pulled me into the kitchen where four pots of food were bubbling hot on the stove. They scooped out a serving from one of the pots and put it in a bowl with a fork for me to take with me on the way to the airport. It was delicious!! They were so proud, and I was so relieved to confirm in my mind that my husband will not starve during this kitchen transition. Ha!
This is Joresse. He has a huge burden for the education of the young people in his village. He is a translator for Hope Center, and on the weekends, he teaches English, music, and computer at a school in the village. He does not get paid a thing for his time, but he knows that as he helps educate children in the village, their lives will improve.
Before leaving Monday, we made a quick trip back to the back of the village to a little school where one of our translators teaches English on the weekends. His name is Joresse and he teaches young Haitians English, music, and computer classes for free in his spare time. He has such a heart for the educational progress of the children of his village. His recent request for English Picture Dictionaries was miraculously met when he received exactly enough books from people ordering them through Amazon and sending them to But God Ministries. We delivered them on Monday before I left, and the students were thrilled! He is pretty sure the classes are going to grow now that God has not only provided books but He has opened the door to send American missionaries to the school often to help with classes. Joresse did ask me to get the word out that they need laptops for their computer class. Right now they teach a class of 15 on one very old desktop computer. They not only teach the basics of computer usage, but also Word, Excel, and Powerpoint….but again, on that ONE computer. I told him that I would get the word out and then pray that God would move to provide more computers. If you know of anyone who has a laptop they would like to donate to us to take to their school, please let me know. Of course, it needs to work and have decent battery capacity since they don’t have constant, reliable electricity. I know that God will provide for their needs as we pray, and Joresse knows that too. I am so very thankful for his servant’s heart.
Presenting the new textbooks to Joresse and some of his students. They were so thankful. More books will be needed as more and more students begin taking the classes.
Thank you once again for your prayers and support as we continue on this journey. As I have been writing this post, a song by Lincoln Brewster has been in my head that says, “You’re amazing – More than amazing – Forever our God – You’re more than enough.” Our God is indeed more than enough. We have cried out to Him, and He has heard our prayers. As we have sought Him with everything we are, He has kept his promises, and he has been faithful to provide for all of our needs. Words cannot describe how amazed we continue to be by the love the Father has for his children…He is indeed enough.
Walking in His Steps,
Tony, Mickie, Jonathan, and Jacob West