Day two brought many new experiences for both the seven returning and five new team members. After an early morning breakfast, we piled into our two vehicles and made our way down from Petionville and through Port au Prince. Our drivers, Spana and Voltaire, expertly navigated through the busy streets that seem to pulse with energy. Even at 6:00 am Haitians are out and about in the city, many of them impressing us with their abilities to balance and carry anything from bowls of produce to cases of soda on their heads.
As we made our way into Petit Goave, we caught glimpses of the ocean and also enjoyed the lush green of the mountains rising in the morning sun. The island offers amazing physical beauty, and John commented that the foliage seems particularly green this trip. We also noticed quite a bit of corn growing along the sides of the roads and spotted avocado and mango trees on our ride.
After settling our bags at the guest house, we headed to church and were ushered into front row guest of honor seats. The Haitians celebrated Mother’s Day today, so much of the ceremony focused on celebrating the mothers of the community. Many of the women wore bright red bows on their blouses as a special token of honor. Following the service we mingled and visited with members of the congregation. It appears quite obvious that our team leader, Rudy, has established tight bonds with the community as people made special efforts to seek him out and welcome our group.
The afternoon brought a special boat trip to a remote beach. We had no idea what to expect as we loaded twelve people into a small motor boat. After a 45 minute ride, we spent several hours swimming, sunning, and talking with several locals.
Our final adventure of the day involved a precarious ride down a bumpy road (again, many thanks to our fearless drivers) that opened to a revival celebration at a small church. Beaming faces welcomed us, and once again, we were escorted to seats of honor. Resurrection partnered with the local community to help build the new church, and this evening’s celebrations were the first of a three day celebration. Passion filled music lifted the hearts and spirits of all present as we celebrated and worshipped together. Lori loved the fact that she recognized many hymns and loved hearing our English join with the Haitians’ Creole.
Please continue to send your thoughts and prayers our way as we head into our first day of construction on Monday.