On the ground in Haiti-Day3

22 Jan

Opened Doors

We began our day with prayer, “God, open doors and give us favor in the eyes of the people we need to meet.” Our first stop was the UN medical supply warehouse where now we are greeted with smiles by the workers who are trying so hard to get supplies out to where they are needed. We seek to minister to the people we see serving, asking how they’re doing, praying with them. One pharmacist who was pulling our items is named Michele. His face shows how tired he is, working without breaks with no end in sight. He told that all he sees is people coming and asking for supplies, and it gets frustrating for him. But I was able to share with him about the hundreds of patients that were treated yesterday because he stayed late to help us on Tuesday. Photos provided a visual so that the whole group there could see a purpose and be encouraged. This was the first of many times today that God gave us favor in the eyes of the people we needed to contact.

As I was inside the warehouse compound, Mark saw a group of Army soldiers setting up camp and creating a helicopter landing zone outside the walls. By the time I had the truck loaded with our supplies, we had made new friends who then escorted us into the secure airport compound right to their battalion colonel. We were greeted with great friendliness and willingness to help. After hearing about the needs for medical supplies in Cap Haitian, the colonel offered to help us get them there…by military helicopter. He then gave us a captain to help us get into UN headquarters and make the connections needed to make it all happen. Short story, it got temporarily mired in red tape, but we made it up pretty far in the chain and we’re praying we can get it soon. The hospital in the Milot area of Cap Haitian is now going to set up a field hospital on the property of our church partners there, so the need is critical. The hospital is overflowing and we need to get supplies there. It is hard to express our incredulity at the contrast between all the resources and people at the airport base (which has now turned into literally, a small city) and the desperate need wherever we go in the PaP area. But God made these connections for us, and we were able to obtain many more contacts that may help us get resources to the people who need them. Before we left, the colonel ordered our van filled with water and MREs so it could get out and start making a difference.

Next stop was Cassier and Leogone, two towns that were at the epicenter of the first earthquake (there have been two more since then over 6.0 magnitude). If PaP is desperate(and it is), then these towns are desolate. No one knows they are there, and the destruction is incredible. We saw several four story schools that were pancaked to a height of eight feet. Although I’ve said it before, decay overwhelms all other smells. We met up with Pastor Miliel who told us his story here at the house compound last evening. The school of 400 kids is gone, though he doesn’t know how many may have been there. All the homes, including his own, are crushed. As we stood on top of his church that is mostly rubble, he couldn’t take it all in; the destruction, all that his congregation has worked for, with no idea what tomorrow will bring. Forget next year, next month or even next week. The thought of tomorrow brings people to a standstill. Over one hundred people are sleeping on the church lawn (actually dirt). The only water source is a well that provides two inches of water in a bucket for each dip. We unloaded the MREs and water and placed them in the only part of the church still standing and is still secure. Pastor Miliel and his leaders now have a means to minister to the community. It was such fun to watch as our local guide and driver demonstrated how to heat an MRE with the included heat packs. People had never seen anything like that before and they laughed to see steam coming from a plastic pack with no heat source.

Darkness approached, but we had another God appointment. Driving through Cassier, we found the mayor who controls the police and government land. We learned that there has been no medical care for the injured and that there are many open wounds and broken bones . We will return in the morning to assess current needs. We intend to bring plastic sheeting from Samaritan’s Purse to protect the thousands sleeping outside. We will also look at a house that we may be able to rent as a base of operations for these two towns that have great needs. Pray that we continue to find favor with contacts and impact lives for the Kingdom.

One Response to “On the ground in Haiti-Day3”

  1. read2kds January 22, 2010 at 9:13 pm #

    Brian, This is Amy Martin from Charlotte…I have been checking your blog constantly since Cathi posted the address on FB. Chad and I have been praying for you and the people you are caring for without ceasing. I am specifically praying for many doors to open to get supplies and that ALL that you meet would recognize Christ in you SO THAT they may meet the one who truly saves…may Jesus be with you and may you feel the peace that can only come from him in every situation you are presented with.Blessings, Amy Martin

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