Craig and Christi return to Haiti, and share their first week back on the ground. 

“Bienvini! Welcome!” We have heard this warm welcome from many, many people as we have recently arrived in Haiti. We are pleased, we didn’t forget all of our Creole. Well, maybe that is a result of not having much to forget. 🙂

Already, today Many Hands is hosting a Leadership Conference. Rain has been plentiful the past couple of weeks since the Hurricane passed by. The roads are challenging but 90 of the 100 people in this Leadership Development program were here on the MH Campus by 7:00 this morning. Most come on foot so just some muddy shoes to clean tonight. There have been overcast skies a fair amount of the past 3 days.

The clouds were amazing as we approached Cap Haitien on Sunday

The conference began this morning by several of the Many Hands staff symbolically washing the feet of the attendees to signify the leadership, which is the theme of the conference.

Lunch was served, which included bright red tomatoes that were grown in the Many Hands hydroponic house.

Two very creative guitar stands were crafted out of wood.

Over the course of the next 2 days, those in attendance will be challenged to think about who they are as Servant Leaders in Christ, and how they can serve God in their communities.

Yesterday we were out in several communities to visit with some of these same leaders as well as families that have been involved with the Concrete Floor Project. As these leaders have worked together to select the families, plan with workers, coordinate materials, etc. the outcome is homes with a concrete floor, workers that have earned a wage, and leaders who have practiced leadership within their own communities.

Some are learning quite well, some need more practice. We know of community groups that have worked well together but we also know there have been some situations where there has been persecution happening among the team members within community groups.

Teaching on Servant Leadership is worth the effort. God’s ways are hard to find for some but we are confident God can transform hearts and minds for His Glory.

The past week, Romans 12:1-2 has directed our preparation for continued ministry in Sylvain, Haiti.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sister, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living and pleasing sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God–this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of you mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is: His good, pleasing and perfect will.”

These words of teaching and encouragement are applicable in all situations. Be encouraged as you work to stay within the will of God in your life.

One special treat was to be greeted by Evelouse and her little boy, Fahensley. Both have been helped by MH for the past year and a half with chronic medical problems. The visit today was not to ask for help but just to say welcome back and to share a letter of thanks from the family.

Our friends Francios with son Fahensley and wife Evelouse

Now for the excitement of TODAY… Christi was getting a chair from the outdoor balcony of our second floor apartment and was swarmed by wasps. They went straight for her knees and ankles with a result of at least then wasp stings! Safe to say she does NOT have an allergic reaction to a wasp sting. By tomorrow morning she should be free of pain.

The challenges are every day, ‘chak jou’, at the same time the rewards are there every day. We trust God to handle what needs to be handled and we give Him thanks in ALL things. This includes giving thanks for all the support, prayers, and love that we have known and felt from you!