The Trip Home
Mar 22, 2010 by Kenneth Webb | 0 Comments
First I want to thank all of you who supported me, my family (while they stayed home) and our team on this trip to Haiti. Our trip went very well. I hope that you had the opportunity to read the daily updates while we were in country.
(Kam reminded me that I didn't get out an update about the Sunday service I preached at. It went well, and I pray that the message was well received. The church met in the street in front of their church building. They hung tarps up to shelter us from the sun. There were about 200 people in attendance. They met in the street because the people are still afraid to be inside the church building. There was no damage to the building, just the emotional trauma from the earthquake that kept them outside.)
We arrived back in Florida on Monday and were in Colorado on Tuesday. The most difficult part of the trip was getting through the airport in Haiti. We spent three hours waiting in lines and showing passports. If you think DIA is a problem, then don't go to Haiti!
The mission of the team was to provide counseling and teach counseling techniques to both the seminary faculty and the staff of Compassion International. That part of the mission went very well. We taught and ministered to about 20 staff and faculty of STEP seminary and with over 1100 individuals at Compassion. That will have an impact all over the country, as well as Port-Au-Prince. We couldn't have imagined such a mission when we went.
We used the funds that givers provided to take 7 tents, food, clothing and other supplies with us. These were given to the president of STEP to be used for his staff as needed. They were all very grateful for the gifts! The medical supplies we took were given to the doctor who hosted us. She oversees the medical needs of a tent camp of 6,000 people. I know that these supplies will get put to very good use.
People have asked for my impressions of the state of the country. While things look bleak, there is a bright ray of hope shining in Haiti. The top Christian leaders in the country met while we were there. They are drafting plans for the church to be involved in transforming Haiti. The leadership of the country lacks Christian values and this group seeks to have a voice in how things are run and how people are treated. This has the potential to truly change Haiti.
The biggest thing that I saw was a country of beautiful people. They are very resilient, strong and proud. Even though Haiti lacks the resources to care for the people, to clean up the debris or to rebuild, there is hope that the international community can pull the resources together to rebuild this country. I am confident that with some resources and good Christian leadership this country can accomplish great things.
One other thought: I was ignorant of the history of Haiti before I went on this trip. Dr. Noelliste was passionate about teaching us some of the history of the country and the region. I would encourage you to take the time to look and read the information on Wikipedia on the history of Haiti. It was very interesting.
Lastly, I have included two links to photo albums for the team. Tiffany, one of our counselors, shot and then put together some great photos from our trip. I hope you enjoy seeing some of the sights we saw while in the country. You will see gorgeous landscapes, smiling children, trash, signs of poverty, tent camps, life in the streets along with some of the devastation. Pictures can't capture the sounds, smells, chaos or energy of the country, but it gives you an idea. Enjoy!
I was very blessed to be able to go on this trip and to have friends and family support me in this. The team knew that the prayers of the many sustained and protected while we were there. I can't thank you all enough for that support.