It has been a long time since most of you have heard from us. Our apologies!!! About three months ago our internet crashed. We had just begun working on setting up a better system for communication – then the internet died and everything went on hold. So far we have not been able to find a way to get our old system working again.
We have been able to purchase one jump drive router that connects to the internet through the cell phone tower. This enables us to receive and send out emails periodically but it is extremely limited. To give you a few ideas of exactly how limited it is… the other day Krischelle spent four hours trying to send out two emails. She ended up having to rewrite one of them three times. Bonita has yet to be able to receive all of her emails – it gets to a certain percentage and then stops. One night I (Judy) walked around to all the best spots for reception – Sam even took my computer to a spot by the side of the road but I got no reception on my computer. After several hours I gave up, frustrated and tired. The next day I found out the problem. Each time I use the jump drive I have to uninstall and reinstall the whole program. Apart from his favorite spot by the side of the road, Samuel has also been found in the church, on the outside back corner of the Lemuel house, and walking around the campus looking for signal.
So, needless to say, with one jump drive between all of us and all the problems of signal and reliability, internet access is more of an exception than a rule these days. Fortunately though, my parents have been here the past two weeks and will be sending this out/posting this on the blog for me when they get home.
A lot has been going on this summer!
1. We were able to begin work on the school roof project! Although it will be quite some time before we can actually put the roofs on (due to shipping delays and other logistics) all of the preparatory masonry work is finished.
2. We were able to build a house that we will use for teachers and other staff who come from outside the area. Plans are to put the roof on next week!
3. A group from The Village church in Milton, Ontario put on an English camp for 30 children.
The video below is of the first day of camp.
The team taught Thony a lot about making videos and presentations. Thony actually made the intro video for the Olympics themed camp himself!
Rob Stanley, pastor of The Village, also did some leadership training for some of our youth.
4. A cistern and front gate were put in at Krischelle’s “house”. Krischelle is currently living in Manis’ sister’s house and using her rent money to finish the house and get it set up to someday be used as a women’s center.
5. My dad and Sam, along with two of Sam’s friends from the south of Haiti put in the kitchen at our house and a whole team of people helped us paint!
6. Renovations have begun on the guest house! There will now be latrines much closer to the rooms so that no one has to traipse all the way down to the one by the gazebo. For any of you been here you know how nice that will be!
7. Work has also continued on the church. Money raised at the Fête Moisson and Fundraising Concert has been put to work on a front porch and back depot.
8. We had our first summer intern: Elysha Vanderveer. She helped out in many, many ways, including with the English camp (pictured below with some of the English Camp staff). She also taught a summer English class for some of the youth in the area.
On a more somber note there have been some difficulties as well. It has not rained significantly, if at all since April. It is REALLY dry right now. Needless to say, the people have lost yet another harvest. **Update since writing this letter: It rained yesterday August 21. The area is still dry and could use a lot more but it was awfully nice to finally get at least something! Praise God!**
By God’s grace we were able to do two cash for work programs this summer to clean out two of the rainwater catchment holes in the area. These projects, along with all the other work that has been going on, has brought some much needed income to many families in the community.
On another sad note, Manis’ grandfather seems to have had some sort of stroke and has been slowly degenerating for the past two months. Many are surprised he has made it this long. The gospel has been clearly shared with him MANY times but he continues to reject Christ. In fact, the day before his stroke he was calling the spirits he serves against his Christian wife. We continue to pray for his salvation and that he may be released from his suffering into God’s presence and not into greater eternal suffering.
Some of you may be wondering about Frè Jak whom I wrote about some time ago. Although his physical situation is not much changed, he seems to be in much better spirits and strengthened in his faith by the regular visits particularly from Bonita and Thony and a few church members.
Speaking of Thony, he has returned to PauP to enter seminary this Fall. Please pray for him. He is going to seminary with the intention of eventually returning to serve in the church here. Please pray for God’s hand of protection on him – protection from both the physical and spiritual attacks of satan. Please pray that the attacks God does allow will be for Thony’s growth and refinement – not for his destruction or discouragement.
Looking toward the next few months, here are a few things that will be going on:
August 23-mid September: New Crossworld missionaries Mason and Lauren Young with their son James will be doing their orientation here with us. Please pray that we will be able to give them a good start to their time here in Haiti.
August 28: Bonita flies to Canada for some medical appointments as well as reporting to and sharing with supporters. She is planning to return in November.
September 2-6: Teacher and staff orientation
September 10: The first day of school (N.B. We just learned that the government is forbidding schools from opening before October! We pray this will be rescinded.)
September 15: Krischelle will be flying out to finish raising the additional support necessary for her to work with Lemuel full time.
October: Jenna Brill, our intern for the year will be arriving! Jenna will be teaching English in the school and helping out in various ways. Rick Bucklew who has been down several times and is always a huge help may be flying in with her. Loring and Marion Swain may also be spending some time with us in October. We are also hoping to ship any materials we need for the school. October is the earliest opportunity that we can due this due to changes in Haitian customs laws.
November: Sometime in November Sam will be leaving for Germany. He is planning to return in the New Year. Bonita and (hopefully!) Krischelle will be returning from their trips, and Lake Tomahawk Bible Church will be doing their third annual English Camp for the school children.
December: No big plans yet, though it is always a busy month with preparations for the Christmas program.
January: We are looking to put together a team to help put on the school roof. We were hoping to do this sometime in the fall but with the delay in shipping we have had to postpone it.
Thank you for your faithful encouragement, love, and support. We are trying to get the internet system fixed but, as I have no idea when that will happen, we greatly appreciate your understanding and patience as you hear from us less often. If you need to get a hold of us please feel free to call at 011-509-3209-3077. For anything urgent please contact David Muchmore at david.muchmore@crossworld .org and he will get the message to us.