The Trinity College team, led by Lucia Van Maanen, have arrived in Haiti. Experiencing the first days of their life transforming trip, they strive to meet God’s call and commission, serving those they meet in Haiti.
“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.” Acts 20:24
Hi everyone! It’s Kelsey writing to you all tonight. Whew, has it been an eye opening last couple days or what! After almost 2 full days of being in Haiti, it is the verse above that the Lord has laid on my heart and has me repeating moment after moment as we serve God in this land with its beautiful people.
First things first- travels went as awesome as they could go (Praise the Lord!) We ended our first night relaxing at a hotel in Ft. Pierce, Florida. Wednesday night was wonderful kick start to our week- Lucia (our team leader) introduced us to a video for devotions that talked about and challenged us to think about who God was to each of us, and who he has been to each of us. It was an incredible reminder for me, along with everyone else on our team that He is our Lord, and we are his possession and it’s our destiny to walk in the nature of God.Ready for the MFI flight to Pignon
A relaxing night after a few flights it was indeed, but that 5:00 am alarm the next morning to catch our first flight out of the states came fast for everyone. Our first flight out was on a little MFI 200 plane that took us a little hop over to one of the islands in the Bahamas where our plane had to re-fuel. From there we took our next flight into Haiti, where we got to go through Customs, which went so smooth- thank goodness! Both of those flights took about 1 hour and 50 minutes each, with our last one being over the mountain into the beautiful city of Pignon, Haiti, that flight being just shy of 15 minutes. Safe and sound after nearly 4 hours we did arrive, Praise God! As we exited the plane, Craig and Christi, the Missionary Leaders of Many Hands For Haiti, were there to greet us with a few members of their team who were all so eager to see us and show us around.
We spent the afternoon on Thursday touring around the MH Campus, getting settled in, and walking through the Sylvain community meeting and greeting many of the Haitians along the road. Kids were running left and right, from the front and from the back clinging onto our hands and jumping onto our backs. The first moments we were all able to soak in every ounce of their love. Joy- genuine, authentic joy is what these beautiful people extended to all of us. As we continued to tour the area of Sylvain, we had the opportunity to traverse across the “Bridges to Prosperity” suspension bridge which spanned a river, the Bouyara, where many of the Haitians will go to wash their clothes, and bathe. The rest of the night consisted of wonderful fellowship with the team getting an extended and more detailed tour of the Many Hands campus. We ended Thursday night with a recap of the day, worship, and our agenda for Friday.On the suspension bridge
Bright and early we were all up again for more devotions, breakfast, and our first work project: pouring a concrete floor. Our team was blessed with the opportunity to mix and pour concrete in a very small house for a Haitian friend’s family. This project was expected to take up most of the morning, but with all of our helping hands we were able to get it finished in no time! Prayers over the house and with the family with bits of fellowship made for a great kick-start to our day.
Riding the truck in the morning Working side by side Another finished floor!
We made our way back to the campus where we got to peek our heads into the MH preschool classroom and get a glimpse of what a day in the life of the students looks like. A thriving school program they have here at Many Hands, which was so evident and SO cool to see how the Lord’s work was being done and the people being so blessed through it. We continued our day by meeting the rest of the Many Hands staff and handing out plates of food to the Haitian women and kids through a Program called “Thrive for Five.”
This afternoon our team had the opportunity to do a food distribution to 8 different families around Pignon. We went to the market to pick up some food that we loaded up into the truck and distributed to families who were really in need. This experience, for me, was beyond the shadow of a doubt life changing. We met families who struggle with health, and battle with just getting their every day needs- the every day needs that often I find myself taking for granted. At the end of each distribution we had the opportunity to pray over each family’s specific needs and sang praise songs together. These were moments that reminded me of heaven- Rejoicing and singing praises to our good God Almighty in Heaven who is our constant Provider, Healer, Protector and Abba Father.
A busy first two days it has been for sure. An experience that is really just humbling and indescribable. Opportunities that are pushing each one of us outside of our comfort zones as we are doing our best to stay committed to the commission and call to be His hands and feet this week in the name of Jesus.
We appreciate so much all the thoughts, prayers, and support. We ask from all of our passionate hearts that those prayers keep coming. The Lord is doing an incredible work in every way and in every heart.
All the Glory to God. He is constant, He is Sovereign over all, He is the Almighty Healer, He is the God of the impossible, He is our Father who always is working for the good of those who love Him.
Love and hugs to all,