The Sunnybrook short term mission team has been learning about the events that shaped a whole nation. Their interaction with Haiti was not limited to facts and numbers. On the way home from the Citadel, the team made a pit stop and experienced the more personal side of Haiti.
To read yesterday’s blog, click here.
Today most of the team woke up at 5am to journey 2.5 hours away to Haiti’s mighty fortress, Citadelle Laferriere. The Citadelle was built between 1805 and 1820 by over 20,000 workers as a way to keep the newly independent nation of Haiti safe from the French. We learned that King Henry Christophe feared the French so much so he wanted to give the illusion there were more soldiers than there actually were. In the presence of two French spies, the king marched one thousand soldiers in a formation around the palace ten times, each time they passed, they changed uniforms. The French saw this and said King Henry Christophe has 10,000 soldiers and were fearful so they never returned. King Christophe built Sans Souci Palace below the Citadelle during this time as well. There was amazing architectural work to both buildings! However, in 1843 a massive earthquake rocked Haiti and Sans Souci Palace was heavily damaged but the Citadelle was hardly shaken. The history of the Citadelle was amazing and beautiful. The views cannot be expressed at just how beautiful and how far you could see.
The team headed back towards Many Hands for Haiti with a “pit stop” just outside of Dondon to follow up with a gentleman in need of possible medical attention. While Christi and Sharon were tending to this man, the rest of the team remained in the truck, but not for long. Within a minute of arriving several kids appeared. A few of them were playing with a soccer ball made out of yarn. The team began interacting with these children and within 10 minutes the team was surrounded by approximately 30-4 children and adults. However, only God knew what was truly in the plan for this team. A man who had a severe physical disability had no real use of his legs so would walk on his hands using his legs just for balance. We were able to find out where this man lived and assess things for him to be put on the PET Cart distribution list. God used a simple stop to create such a crowd bringing this man and another man we met along the way to visit the other man’s home, to us so that their lives can be changed. What was scheduled to be a 5-10 minute stop turned into an extra unplanned hour of our trip. It wasn’t our plan but it sure was God’s plan.
While some of the team stayed near Many Hands for Haiti campus, they were plenty busy themselves! They worked around the campus and worked on building the new goat guard tower. More importantly, they delivered three mattresses to three families in need. The recipients have never had the blessing of a mattress before today. Like other days, the emotion could not be captured, only felt to those there. It’s such a blessing to be the hands and feet of Jesus!
Today we were reminded that God promises us that He is our Mighty Fortress, our Rock, our Deliverer and the one who delivers us from our enemies. God is with us no matter what, through good times and bad. We can rely on Him for everything. We are very fortunate to have such an amazing God with us at all times and on demand!