The CRC Senior High Youth Group team have been making a wide impact in Pignon, distributing food, delivering goats, pouring concrete floors and even painting! Here are the highlights from their busy day of serving as they put faith into action.

We had a great day on Friday!!  A few of us woke up early due to the rooster crowing and the goats crying like infant children.  Breakfast was served at 7:30 a.m.  A few of our kids woke up at 5:30 a.m. by mistake due to the clocks on their cell phones being off an hour. 

We are split up into three work groups for the day.  Teams 1 and 3 began their day by joining the morning devotions of the MH4H staff.  We sang “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus” in Creole.  The devotions were based on Psalm 27 on God being the light of our lives.

Daily devotions with Many Hands Staff in the Gazebo

Team 2 was the first out the door headed to the concrete floor site.  We worked along side the Haitians and the family of the home.  The concrete was mixed by hand using sand, gravel chipped by hand, cement mix and water on the ground.  We formed a bucket brigade to the workers pouring the floor.  This was very labor intensive work….everyone should sleep well tonight.  In our down time we played with the kids of the family and surrounding neighbors.  We taught them how to play frisbee and shared pictures off our personal photos of home.  They were amazed to see a picture of a foot of snow on the ground.

Pouring a concrete floor – House in Sylvain

Team 1 worked at the Thrive for Five center here on the MH4H campus.  This is a program for ages 0 – 3 years old.  There were 40+ kids that attended with a mom or older sibling that came along.  We learned a new song in Creole to sing with them.  We also split up into groups to play with them.  We had three centers of play dough, sidewalk chalk with wooden cars and played with soccer and tennis balls.  We loved interacting with all these kids and enjoyed how they came up to us without hesitation.  We also served a meal for the kids and the caregiver with them.  There was one little boy maybe three years old that had finished his meal but had his plate turned so every last drop made it to his spoon underneath.  It made us realize how precious food is down here and how much we take our abundance for granted.

A morning at Thrive – helping serve lunch Precious moments with the kids of the Thrive program The older kids get to play with home made play dough

Team 3 distributed goats and food for the families.  There were three goats that we named…Black Sheep, Vanilla Ice and Mimi Chicken Nugget.  Our first challenge was to get the goats into the back of the truck.  Mimi Chicken Nugget proved difficult, pulling kids into different directions and into corn fields.  Once on the road, we headed to MH4H’s agronomist’s house to meet with the families who would be receiving goats and food.  All the goats were pregnant and they are required to give away the first female to sustain the program.  With each family, we asked for prayer concerns and were able to pray while being translated for.  It was an amazing time for us!

A lady receives a goats from our distributions

We all came together for lunch at the campus.  We are allowed one Coca-Cola a day from a glass bottle.

In the afternoon, Team 1 went to a deaf school.  There are around 24 kids who live here and we were able to meet them.  We played games with them…parachute game, soccer, basketball and the limbo.  We also painted fingernails and toured their new dormitory.  Before we left, we were able to see where they are currently living.  The kids were very excited to show us which bed they slept in.  They also gave us a lesson of signing the alphabet.

Girls at the Deaf School in front of their house Creative play at the Deaf School – a bamboo pole for a jungle gym

Team 2 distributed the rice, beans, oil, spaghetti and bouillon that we purchased yesterday in Pignon.  Even with all the problems or issues that each person is facing, they seemed to have joy filled hearts and were very happy to receive this gift.  We asked them if they knew Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour, and every one of them said yes.  We then prayed with each one of the recipients, except for one little old lady.  She prayed for us in French.  We could understand the phrase, God is good, many times in her prayer.

Bringing food to a blind man

MH Staff member Odenes helping share food with his neighbor Showing her gratitude – SHE prayed for us as we shared food in the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST Natural beauty!

Team 3 painted one of the classrooms in the new school that was just completed.  It will house four year old preschool starting next semester.  The color of paint reminded us of the butter cow at the Iowa State Fair, so we named it butter cream color.  There were two Haitian high school boys helping us paint, and we had the joy of teaching them how to blend when rolling the first coat.  After just a few hours, we had two coats on, and it looked beautiful.

Team 3 preparing the paint Team 3 in the first classroom

After the work was done, we made our way over to a suspension bridge.  We had good time walking/running over this and then spent some time below attempting to skip rocks on the river.

View from the suspension bridge – Can you find Erin?

Our devotion tonight was based on our theme passage, James 2:14-26.  We were challenged to live a life of not only faith, but also deeds. We shared  the answer to questions such as: How would I describe myself?  What do you love, what are your gifts and talents?  What brings you joy? What goals have I set in life?  What is my purpose?  We talked about how God created us unique and how we can use the answers to all these questions to live a life of action!

In summary, we have felt God in every aspect of this trip.  Exciting changes are beginning to be noticed in the youth and also in us.  Your prayers are working…keep them flowing.

P.S.  Currently, quiet time starts at 10 p.m.  We have given a verbal warning that lasted for 30 seconds.  We love all their laughter and joy!  Saturday morning will be early with a 5 a.m. hike scheduled to Mount Pignon and then shopping at the market.

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