I'll be about where the 'U' is...
I leave in a few weeks and I'm alternating between joy and sadness. My beautiful bride was supposed to accompany our team from Wall Highway Baptist Church (Madison, AL) this year for her first trip to Haiti. Two rotator cuff surgeries and ongoing physical therapy have unfortunately scuppered that opportunity.
And then my heart leaps with joy because I am blessed to be able to return to this small, island nation whose people are still in such dire need. If you have a few moments to read the blogs I've linked to above, you will see what I mean. But nothing reveals the reality of day-to-day struggle in Haiti like being there.
This trip is much different than my previous two journeys because as yet, I have no real idea what we will be doing when we get there. We know that we are working with Mission of Hope and that a number of things will likely be in the picture. One thing I'm excited about is talking with MoH about their new Sports Complex project in Titanyen. People who know me know that no matter how bald and out of shape I am, I will ALWAYS be up for soccer (football to the rest of the world).
Soccer is the national sport of Haiti and it appears MoH is planning to build a sports complex as yet another great way to minister to the people of Haiti. I am All In on that if I get a chance to serve!
The picture above was taken during our 2011 mission in Aux Cayes. It is truly amazing what a few crayons will do for the smile of a child (and a grown up) in Haiti. The Haitian people are a wonderful, melodic, and creative nation. It's hard to put into words what it means to them for people like me to just show up, hang out with them, help them, provide some basics for them, love on them and whatever else we can do during the short time we are blessed to be there.
We leave in the first week of July and I will make a shameless plea for last-minute donations. Just about anything you can think of, we need. I have had great success ministering to the boys (and men) of Haiti through soccer. I would love to take a Jozy Altidore USA soccer jersey to leave with someone, along with a number of decent balls, and an air pump. Other key items are crayons (we need hundreds), coloring sheets (individual sheets like the one picture above - only not colored yet of course!), and age-and-content appropriate books (for every age group from pre-K all the way up to high school).
We can even take down care packages for the permanent staff at MoH. As someone who spent more than 10 years living in the Middle East, I can tell you how special it is to be living in a foreign country and receive a gift from home - even if it's just a jar of Nutella!
If you would like to donate, please email me and I will give you more details on how you can make a difference in the lives of the men, women and children in Haiti!