This is written by Marissa Ferguson, member Pella Christian Winterim trip to Pignon, Haiti. 10 students, 5 teachers, 1 principal and Lucia Van Maanen are on this trip. This is her first time to Haiti and serving with MH4H.

To Read Tanner Van Maanen’s Blog – 1/4
To Read Staci Jansen’s Blog – 1/4
To Read Cailee Veenstra’s Blog – 1/5
To Read Corey Van Kooten’s Blog – 1/6
To Read Shannon Fynaardt’s Blog – 1/6
To Read Kara Jansen’s Blog – 1/7
To View Pella Christian 3 Bear Painting Pictures
To View Morgan & Jake De Ruiter &  Becca Gritters’s Blog – 1/8.

Marissa Ferguson’s Blog – 1/9

Today was our last full day in Haiti; it was bittersweet for most of us as we all had been looking forward to this trip for a while now and we have all grown to love it here in Haiti, but truth be told, we miss our friends and family dearly. Along the way, a few of us had come down with a sickness that passed within two or three days, but in return, it had caused some homesickness as well. It being our last day and all, we decided to live it up, have positive attitudes, and enjoy the last bit of this amazing experience.

Benches being delivered in truck.

Our plan for today was to distribute bibles at Pella Christian of Pignon and to hike up Mount Pignon. We started off with a hearty breakfast of scrambled eggs, bananas, bread, grapefruit juice, and of course, coffee. We drove over to Dr. Guy’s house to pick up the seven (holy number!) desks that the guys had made the previous day. We piled them into the truck and started our bumpy two and a half mile drive to Pella Christian, which took us about twenty to thirty minutes because of the horrible “roads”.

Upon arrival, we unloaded all the desks, and placed them near the classrooms that will open up for fifth and sixth graders next fall. We then grabbed the stacks of bibles that we had fundraised for last year, and were going to hand them out to the students. (As a side note, last year when we raised money to buy these bibles in Creole for the students, Mr.DeRuiter promised to shave his head if we met the amount, which we had done so easily.)

It was really awesome to hand out the bibles to these children, because inside the cover of each bible, every student from the Pella Christian Grade School had either drawn or written a note for the student who was to receive it. The kids were really excited about this, and we sang lots of songs in Creole together too. Those of us who have sponsor a child at this school had the opportunity to meet our child, give them gifts, take pictures, and to visit their home and meet their families. After all of that, we said “Orevwa” and headed back to the hospital to refuel before we took on the mountain.

For lunch, surprisingly we didn’t have spam, but we had a pasta salad, coleslaw with tomatoes, and of course, bread. I opted for the bread. We changed into our long pants, applied sunscreen, bug spray, and grabbed our sunglasses. Unfortunately, there was not enough water for all of us to take along, but being such troopers we started our journey. Going into it, we knew that it would take about two hours up it, and two hours back down. According to the Internet, it was a 2.8-kilometer trek, or about 4,000 feet, and it was about 95 degrees outside. Challenge accepted.

A view from half-way up the mountain.

A view of Pignon from half-way up the mountain.

On the bright side, we had our amazing tour guides – Fransly, Woodson, Roodson, Feniol, Standly, Djakenson, and Kendy; our Haitian friends. It was rocky, steep, prickly, and hot. We had to take many breaks to catch our breaths, drink some water, and take in the gorgeous view. An hour and a half later, we finally made it to the top! All I can say, is I am totally in awe of God and his creation. It is truly beautiful. We all crowded on top of the roof of a little building, took tons of photos, ate some deer jerky, and prepared ourselves for the trip back down. It was definetly easier going down, but some people did slip in fall, but we managed to escape with a few cuts, bruises, and some pretty cool farmer tan lines.

We booked it to the hospital to gulp down water and to take cold showers. Our adventure had also worked up and appetite in all of our stomachs! For dinner, our lovely cooks made us rice and beans (which we still aren’t sick of for the record), and beef stew. After dinner, we plan to pack up our suitcases, play Catch Phrase, pop some popcorn, sit on the balcony, and have a good last night in Haiti. Tomorrow morning, us girls are going to get our hair corn rowed, finish last minute packing, and head out to the airport. Pray for safe travel, and we’ll be seeing you all soon!