In a world of diversity, we love to celebrate our differences. Yet, there comes a time when we are called upon to marvel in our similarities – to rejoice in that the God who made you is the same One who made your neighbor. Follow along as the team from Liberty E Free Church does just that.
To read the team’s previous blog, click here.
Bon Jour from the E-Free team in Haiti!
This trip started with so many contrasts. The freezing cold of Iowa vs. the summer like heat in Haiti. In USA we are the majority, in Haiti we are the minority. At home we have everything we need, in Haiti so many needs go unmet. Technology, transportation, and language are all very different. After three days in Haiti the differences are still there but we were reminded of how the people of Haiti are created in the same image of God as we are. Here’s our journey today.
The day started early, we hopped in the back of the truck at 5:30 am, heading out to climb Mt. Pingon. Haiti means “high place”, so when you go climb a mountain in Haiti, it’s no small challenge. We arrived at the base with just moonlight to guide our path and few roosters trying to wake up the town. The climb was traitorous and pushed us to our limit, but we began to trust and rely on our Haitian guides for stability and guidance. Their servant hearts and steady hand was a huge benefit. The view was worth the climb and we could see the whole valley below. After enjoying the beautiful scenery at the top we headed down and took a group photo.
We headed back the MH4H campus and enjoyed hot pancakes for breakfast. Craig was the cook (because he knows how to add water), and the cooks were at the market buying food for our whole group. We have two wonderful cooks who make each meal from scratch, which takes up all day. We had a short recovery and headed to town to experience the market for ourselves. Saturday is the big shopping day for the community and families from all the outskirts pack into 3-4 blocks where you can buy anything needed to live in Haiti. Fresh produce, hand made baskets, charcoal, live animals, not live animals, shoes, clothes, bedding, groceries, machetes, and hundred more things. It’s compact, crowded, and noisy but normal for the Haiti life. We managed a few purchases and headed back for a late lunch.
The afternoon we split into three working groups. One group headed to the new Maliarette campus to build shade protection to let in the breeze but protect the cooks from the baking sun. Fran, Gabe, and George worked alongside Craig and Darryl to compete the project. It might sound small but the sun is ferocious here and it will help make the daily cooking much more comfortable and pleasant.
A second team stayed back at the campus and sanded over 60 long boards that will be made into new benches to be used at the new Maliarette campus. The boards were rough and took all afternoon but Phyllis, Rebecca, and Dane prepped the boards and they are ready for a coat of varnish on Monday. The benches are multi functional and get used daily.
The third team of Kim, Hannah, Christi, and our Haitian friends headed to paint Bible verses on recently completed houses MH4H built. The tradition after a home is donated, the family picks out a Bible verse and it’s painted on the front of the house. The job took creativity and teamwork to complete three houses with all different verses. It was a great example of how our differences faded away as we are working together with one common goal. Kim and Christi were able to play with the kids and interact with the families while the team painted.
As evening approached we were ready to be cleaned up from our sweaty jobs (it’s still hard to get used to sunburns and 90 degree weather), enjoyed a hearty supper of spaghetti, and shared our Highs and Lows for the day, Tonight was a great night to share how we felt Americans and Haitians are made in God’s image and because of our risen Savior we all have hope. We are left feeling exhausted from the day but full of joy knowing we are one in Christ.
Blessings from the Liberty E-Free team in Haiti.