Christmas 2018 - Hotel Haiti
Written by Jim Dykhuis
The 2018 Christmas party for the King’s Garden Graduates was a bit different this year taking place at the Kayanm Hotel. Hearten Haiti provided a gift of overnight lodging to give them time for fellowship. In typical Haitian fashion, the grads arrived, a bit subdued at first until all filtered in.
Saturday plans consisted of devotions about the gifts of faith, hope and love; dinner and fun. Fun happened easily as the grads caught up with each other sitting in small groups and watching a few brave souls enter the hotel pool, though surprisingly, many waited until after dinner and sunset when both the air and water cooled off.
Dr. Morquette and Edlyn delivered an abundant feast that we had shopped for the day before. Surely there would be leftovers. There were, but the entire cake went in world’s record time, something to do with a Haitian desire for anything sweet.
Laura talked about faith using blindfolds to demonstrate what having faith is like and using various texts including the great faith passage in Hebrews 11:1. Jim (me) introduced the four kinds of love in the Bible, focusing on the agape love of God in Jesus for us found in I John 4:16. A high point for me was reading Clayton’s love benediction pausing after each line to have Hubert translate into Creole.
Haitian Bandstand just kind of happened a little before dinner, but in earnest after dinner (maybe it was the cake). Thanks to God for providing the very large and powerful Bluetooth speaker that the grads quickly took over with itunes and YouTube soundtracks. Wow did they have fun dancing! We also had games and a puzzle and everyone was engaged in something, including pushing the unaware into the pool.
On Sunday we had breakfast then moved back to the pool area for church in the covered bar/seating area. They were asked to sing a solo of their favorite worship song and three groups did so, what courage and great voices. Reginald played Amazing Grace and Onward Christian Soldiers on the clarinet. At one point they broke out into Father Abraham complete with motions. To wrap up the student-lead church service, Teri presented hope using several metaphors, one of which was that of an anchor from Hebrews 6:19. She emphasized how important what you put your hope in is. Jesus is our anchor and has the power to actually deliver what we hope for in him.
Of course by this time we were ready to eat and the pizzas arrived, albeit a bit delayed, TIH (this is Haiti). The three of us served them and everyone had enough. It was at this point Dr. Morquette came back with Edlyn and all the leftovers from dinner. At the time, I felt a bit bad for him as we had just eaten…but he knows these young adults.
To wrap things up we distributed the gift bags made possible by your generosity. There was a bit of horse trading as they discovered fragrances they preferred, but they loved the gifts, cross necklaces, cash and what the gift bags represented: that they are loved and remembered by you.
As we started saying our goodbyes, Hubert’s wisdom showed itself. By the time everyone had left, every bag, paper plate, cookie package, piece of tinfoil, etc. had been used to secure food for the trip home to be eaten later in the week.
That was a poignant end to our time with the grads. As you all know, there is so much need in Haiti and among our grads. Each one is unique in their personality, academic giftedness, relationship with Jesus and physical resources. They still need your prayers and financial support. Thank you for giving to the Christmas party and for supporting them each month. After gifts were handed out three or four stood to offer their thanks for our generosity. It was humbling to hear people with relatively little be so thankful, a challenge for me for the new year.
Juniot’s trip with CRU
First and foremost, I want to thank CRU for its mission throughout the world in evangelizing the word of Christ and especially by organizing annual regional or international meetings in different countries. A special thank you to Annette and Laura and to all the people who contributed to the success of my very first travel to an another country with CRU-Haiti. And I was able to travel to share the love of God with thousands of people from different nations in Brazil. An experience that none of us who have been there will not be able to forget. Above all, I never imagined going to Brazil in the near future. It's something that has left all my family and friends in amazement. Thank you to each one of you. To participate in this conference, I did not have my passport yet, and once I had it, I said to God, I have no means available but if it is your will, I will register by faith and I know you'll help me to find some money to pay the fees. And it was done according to God's plan. Before leaving Haiti, I asked God to help me to be more open to the people I will meet during my trip, to put aside my shyness and allow me to be open to people so I will be able to talk to them. Through the various sessions we have attended, I have learned that it is important to be guided by God because, more often, we want God to follow us in our plans instead of following God's plan for us. Like the story of Jonah,I came to understand that as soon as God wants you for a mission, no matter what you want to do, the plan of God will not change and you will end up going there. On Copacabana beach, I felt free to talk to people, I did not feel fear anymore. In my meetings with my group "missionary community" we were all ready to share our experiences and we liked it. Back in Haiti, our work is continuing through "CRU-Haiti" in universities to talk to students about Jesus' love. It has been a pleasure to meet all these people and to live new experiences by sharing our Christian faith with the same ideology of making disciples for Christ. I thank you all and pray that God will continue to bless you more so you will always have the chance to invest in someone as you have invested in me. And thank you again for being able to count on you for the years to come. With all my heart, thank you. Sincerely, Juniot Jean Baptiste
CRJMAS Gives Back
On Sunday, August 19, 2018 the CRJMAS association visited a Christian orphanage that helps disabled children (deaf, memory delayed, mute, and there are a few who cannot walk.) The evangelical orphanage of Christ in Action (OECDA) has 17 children. We must say that we were a little surprised when we arrived to see that we were expected to play with children even though their mobilization was reduced. It was a great day for us, we sang, danced, and played with them.
We loved this visit, the love that circulated that day took us away. We were happy, happy to have contributed to the joys, the smiles on their faces. On this day we knew the impact, the joy we bring you when you help us.
At first it was an idea, we wanted to help others as you always do for us, we wanted to share a little of the joy, the love, the money you give every month to care of us.
Initially our desire was to go to Kings Garden where we grew up but it was not possible. We also wanted to visit another orphanage in Delmas 75 that Sindy had found but the officials wanted us to give them confidential data specific to us so we refused. In the end, Wilna told us about a doctor who works at King’s Hospital and has an orphanage at Delmas 33. He was very happy to receive us and wishes to see us again soon.
We felt it was good to start this project with a little part of the money that we receive every month from you. We want to share it with children who need help like us, because it reminds us of our history. This Sunday we did it!! We did not imagine that this feeling was going to be stronger than we expected.
We all contributed financially, but not all 27 of us could go. CRJMAS members who has participated:
1)- Juniot, 2)- Wilna, 3)- Marc Noel, 4)- Michèle, 5)- Emmanuela, 6)- Daniela, 7)-Rolando, 8)-Robenson, 9)-Sindy, I0)-Mackenson, 11)-Nico, 12)- Reginald, 13)-Dafney, 14)- Nadine, 15)- Saralie and two drivers.
Thank you to all!!!
Juniot, Sindy and all of the CRJMAS members