Team 1, Journal 2
By Andy G.
Today was our first full day in Haiti. While not all of us are morning people I think we were all quite excited to get up and discover and learn more about this interesting country we found ourselves in.
We had pancakes and eggs for breakfast and then we got ready for church. Some of us hopped on the back of the pickup truck and held on tight and dodged Jason's windshield sprays while the rest of us stayed nice and dry in the cab.
The Quisqueya Church we visited is one of two English speaking churches in the area and we arrived while the worship team was still practicing. Soon everyone started shuffling in and the singing began. It was refreshing to see such a diverse group of faces singing praises to God together.
After the singing, the Pastor spoke about starting out the new year with hope and then shared verses that gave the great commission it's context. We then had the opportunity to partake in the Lord's supper. After a couple more worship songs everyone shuffled out of the sanctuary. It was nice to see Jason and his son conversing with some of their local friends outside.
After church we hopped back in the truck and headed down the short but windy and bumpy path back to the Krul's home. We made some sandwiches, salad, and soup for lunch.
After lunch I quickly helped cleanup because I knew what was happening next; I was quite excited to go on a stroll through the neighborhood with Jason and his son as our guides! It was amazing to see up close the quantity of garbage that made up the back yards of so many thousands here. It was also stunning how close some of the nicest houses around here were to the most rickety wood and tin shacks.
We handed out candies to the kids, and said a friendly "bonjou" to anyone who smiled at us. We saw goats, chickens, and emaciated, limping stray dogs all over the place. We saw a man with a tub completely covered in un-boxed pills, apparently acting as the neighborhood's pharmacist, and a man with a large knife and an big old fly covered hunk of meat on top of a rickety table - the local butcher.
As we headed up one hill we started to feel the beginning of Port Au Prince's first rainfall in more than two months. It was so dry and hot that it felt like we were barely getting wet in spite of how much rain we saw coming down. As we turned onto the main road leading back to the house the rain began to subside, the sun peeked through, and over the beautiful mountains shone a gorgeous, perfect, full rainbow.
Walking up and down the hills was energizing but we were also relieved to be back at the house again. For dinner we ate lasagna and garlic bread. After dinner we listened to today's morning sermon from our home church via hrcnj.org. Then after a few fun rounds of Bible trivia we debriefed together.
Tomorrow we fly to Pignon to get started on the work at the mission. It is located in a rural village in Haiti's central plateau. I'm going to get to bed now because we have to get up early to be ready for our flight! I'm so encouraged about this trip and excited to see what an impact it has already made on each of us so far! I pray that as we begin to install concrete floors, build latrines, set up irrigation systems for farms, and help with feeding programs that we can make an impact on the hearts of some of the beautiful people of Haiti as well!
The day in pictures.
Piling into the pickup.