ProVision Foundation in cooperation with Cedar Springs Presbyterian Church has established a Haiti Relief Fund which will involve funding the organizations listed to the right and will balance immediate relief and ongoing development funding as more assessment and strategy is solidified. Additional trusted organizations may be included in the distribution of this fund if deemed appropriate and helpful to the overall effort. Cedar Springs Presbyterian Church is handling the gifts for this fund.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Update: Harvest Field Ministries #2

It is Friday, 2 ish AM...Thursday at 4 AM (when I woke up last) seems like an awfully long time ago. Here is a recap of the events of the day.

An extremely rough start to find out at 6 am that Pastor Ronnigue Guiellere, my friend, my brother, and a man I respect like no other, is dead. His small concrete home collapsed in the quake crushing him. Pastor Ronnigue was the leader of the churches I work with. He was a man full of wisdom, grace, discernment, and compassion. Everything he said oozed Jesus - when he spoke he made me feel like a kindergarten kid sitting on the floor in front of their teacher while they were being read a good story. Ronnigue shared and lived the gospel with tremendous passion - he lived out what he preached. Ronnigue led many many people to know the Lord. I've spent much of the day weeping uncontrollably as images of pastor Ronnigue come to my mind. I love you brother...I miss you so much already.

The good news that came with the same call at 6 am was to learn that the Camatin church, school, mission house is still standing and only sustained minimal damage. Unfortunately we also learned that the mountain road leading there is completely destroyed in several places and covered with rock and dirt from retaining wall collapses, making it impossible to pass. This means impossible for the 1000's of relief workers soon heading into pap wont be able to reach this area by vehicle. This area, as well as Jacmel which was very hard hit is completely shut off because this is the only road in or out.

It was confirmed that both buildings of our Belloc church, school, and orphanage (no orphans were living there) are complete losses. We still do not know about the status of pastor Jocelyn Beaulliere, his wife, and 4 children, who all lived in an upstairs room of the church.

Mid morning brought more upsetting news that Beremy Valme, the youngest daughter of pastor Menes Valme, was confirmed dead. She was in school when the quake hit, and the entire building became rubble. Pastor Menes is heartbroken over the loss of his little girl, who made straight A's and wanted to study medicine after she graduated high school.

Mid morning did however bring us some glorious news about Odette Coleman. Odette is being adopted by my good friends Andy and Allyson Coleman. She was in PaP for an appointment for the final stages of the adoption when the quake hit. No one had been able to reach her birth father who she was with so we had no idea if she was okay...until this morning we learned they are safe and were meeting up with Ricot to stay in his home for now.

We also received joyous news that many of our workers, including Hippolite, Estimine, Mary Flo, Lozama, Jabet, and Santela are safe and uninjured. For some of you, these are just names - for others of you these are very special people you know and love so we celebrate that they were spared.

I arrived in the Dominican border town of Jimani to the Jimani Project Hospital at about 11 pm and wow...I'm not a military guy but it is what I'd assume a battle field hospital looks like. Lots of blood, cuts, broken bones, crying, and a team of almost 40 doctors, nurses, and medical professionals frantically working to care for the hurting people. Dom Republic and US military helicopters are bringing some of the worst wounded from pap to this clinic to be cared for. A recently finished orphanage next door to the hospital is being turned into the hospital annex. Daylight will bring hundreds more coming to be treated for horrible wounds.

What tomorrow might bring for me: I feel it is important to get to the Camatin area to:
1 - assess what "minor damage" to the Camatin facility really is
2 - to determine if we can safely move the Coq Chante orphans to Camatin (about a 3 hr walk between the 2 places)
3 - find out firsthand about friends at Belloc (about a 3 hr walk from Coq Chante) including pastor Beaulliere, Wousami bates, a little boy being adopted by our friends Mike and Karen Bates, and many others we know and love in Belloc
4 - determine if Camatin can be used as a hub to bring aid into from Jacmel so we can minister to these hard hit areas that are not accessible due to the damaged roads.

Since the roads are not passable, the only way I can get there is in the air. I had a couple leads on small charter planes and helicopters out of the DR but they have not worked out. But a couple hours ago I spoke with a guy who thinks he can work with the US military (who are carrying the wounded to the Jimani hospital) to allow me to hitch a ride to Camatin. If this is God's plan, please pray that the Lord works it out for me to be on one of those helicopters.

The letters are running together, my thumbs are tired (from typing) and 5 AM is only a few hours away so that's all for now.

Keep praying,

Bondye bon tout tan!
God is good all the time!

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