Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Some News

Greetings to you all from the House of Hope.  Linda and the kids asked me to thank you specifically for your prayers for us over the past few weeks.  They are all doing well, the kids are in school and life seems pretty much back to normal.  The only fallout for us from the big hurricane that went through has been receiving more children into our home.  We've already received about half a dozen from the affected areas out west of us and we anticipate that going up even further in the next few weeks.  

Thank you too for your prayers as I traveled out to see some of our partners out in Western Canada.  We made it there and back safely in spite of having to drive through a pretty bad storm and counting semi-trailers stuck in the ditch part of the way along.  It was a bit of stressful driving -- but we made it and had a great time with our friends out there.  

An exciting story that came out of this trip is that while speaking at our partnering church in Banff on Sunday morning I shared the story of Lyse and our desire to find someone who could help us with her case.  Banff is a tourist town and they often have visitors from all over the world in their church services.   In the service that morning was a family from another area of Canada  They had family visiting from Brazil and they brought them to see this beautiful area of Canada.   So, turns out the father of the family just happens to be a pediatric doctor in a children's hospital here in Canada!  He offered to do what he could to help us with Lyse's case.  He has all her information and is seeking some answers with the other doctors in their hospital.  We are so grateful that our Heavenly Father cares so much about each of us that he coordinated all these events so that we would cross paths!  Keep praying for wisdom for the doctors and that we could get some definitive answers for Lyse.

On the same note of exciting news, we are so grateful for everyone who has sent in extra financial support for us over these past few weeks.  We have been able to make 2 significant payments on what we owe to the hospital and while we still have some debt left, we are feeling much better about it than before and are hopeful that the rest will come in as this year is coming to an end.  Our next prayer request would then be that we would be able to get some more partners to support us on a monthly basis so we don't go back into debt to them in the future.

 We have some prayer requests to share with you for the days and weeks ahead:
  • Linda had a fall last night and injured her foot.  She had x-rays today and the doctor said it wasn't broken, but it is swollen and painful.  Please pray for quick and total healing for her.
  • There is a medical team visiting our partnering hospital this week and another one heading there next week.  The team that is currently there will be doing skin grafts on one of our little girls at the House of Hope this coming Friday.  Five year old Neisha has been in our home for a little over a month now and she came with significant burns across her stomach.  We are grateful that this team has the tools and skills to do these grafts for her, and we ask you to pray for them as they do the work and for Neisha that she would heal nicely and that this would really help her.
A big thank you to everyone who has given and prayed for us -- you are such a blessing to us!

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

An Update

Good Morning Everyone.  First of all, very sorry I didn't get to write an update yesterday, I was not home all day.  I did keep in touch with Linda and the kids throughout the past couple of days to make sure all was OK. They are doing fine.  

We are located on the North coast of Haiti, so not in the area where the hurricane hit directly and where it seems there is much more damage.  I haven't heard anything about if there is damage in our general area, but I do know the HOH and all our kids are safe.  The had lots of wind and rain through the day yesterday; what scared them the most was how dark it got throughout the day.  Now it is calm but still raining off and on.  

Thank you so much for your prayers on their behalf, and please continue to pray for Haiti and those who now have to start cleaning up and helping those most affected. 

I'll update when I can, but I am heading out on a road trip today to visit with a supporting church in Alberta, Canada, to visit family and to attend the funeral of a friend of ours who passed away suddenly this past week.  While the HOH is dealing with rain, I'm preparing to drive through our first snow storm of the season!  So, I could use your prayers as well.

Thanks so much for all the messages of concern and assurances of your prayers.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Thank you!

We appreciate the response we've had from you our supporters to our call for help.  We have had numerous donations made, as well as some promises of help and continued prayers for which we are so thankful.  We will be able to make a payment on our debt and hopefully continue to pay off more in the months to come.  Please continue to keep our projects in your prayers.

Before I give you a bit more of an update on my trip down to Haiti -- which I promised but haven't had a chance to do yet -- I wanted to give you a bit of an update on our "grand" babies.  Fafane and Jeremiah are doing really well.  Unfortunately Fafane's father-in-law passed away last week, so with the rejoicing of a new baby in the family came a time of mourning the passing of the child's grandfather.  You could keep that family in your prayers as well.

Lyse continues to hang in there.  She continues to have her blood count monitored and receives transfusions as necessary.  We heard back from one set of doctors in Miami that they were not able to help us with her case at this time.  We are not sure if that means, nothing can be done to help her, or that they are just not able to get involved in her case.  Our friends in Miami are still checking into this, so we remain hopeful and ask for your continued prayers for her as well.

Now, for some more pictures from my trip down to the HOH... VBS (we call it camp in Haiti) as always was a special time for all of us.  We had the 60 HOH kids there and before we knew it, they were joined by about 100 of their friends and fellow students from our local community.  We were glad to have them come, but it did get a bit crowded and chaotic as we just don't have enough space for that many people.  But everyone just moved over a little bit and it really was a great time to be together and studying God's Word and how it applies to our lives today.   The theme this year was Jesus makes me a 10 out of 10.  Here are some pictures...

The three different "teams" sitting in the shade during lesson times.

This team used construction paper to make hats for their team members one day.
 This team shows off their handy work after taking part in the craft session.
 Games are always a fun time -- this is a rousing game of dodge ball
Not even the pouring rain could squelch the enthusiasm during a balloon popping game.
Unfortunately, the T-shirts didn't arrive until after camp was over and we all went home, so we weren't able to get a picture of everyone in their shirts, but this is a group of them.
The girls show off their theme based shirts.
But, as with all things -- summer holidays has come to an end, and now the kids are into the school year.  This is the first year for Kateleen and Davidson... They were excited on their first day.
Here are some others on their way...

And here is a picture of the two girls who were adopted by the Haitian family in Port-au-Prince as they head off for their start in school as well...
Once again, we thank you for the part you play in changing the lives and futures of these precious ones in our care.  We appreciate your continued prayers and support in whatever way you are able to help us out.  We hope you all have a great week... until next time....

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

We need your help...

When you are involved in a work such as the House of Hope there are several things that become very clear as time goes by.  Two of these things stood out for us these past couple of weeks.  First of all, we are more convinced than ever of the necessity of the work we are doing.  Just this past week two sets of twin boys have come to our home extremely malnourished.  These and every new story of lives being changed brings new excitement and understanding that what we are doing is the most important thing for us.

The second thing that has stood out for us is how dependent we are on others to accomplish this ministry.   We are totally dependent on God to provide everything we need to love, care and provide hope for these children.  But we are also dependent on our partners to help us out in the ways that they can.  

We have come to a place where we are really in need of your help at this moment.  We have mentioned the financial struggle we have had off and on for the past couple of year.  We are so grateful for everyone one of you who has been a part of the House of Hope family over the years; whether it is through giving of your time or resources, or your encouragement and prayers.  

The past couple of weeks have been tough as we are receiving more and more pressure to pay off the debt that we have to our local hospital.  It is a debt that has been around for a long time and no matter how hard we have worked to reduce it, we haven't been able to as more expenses continue to be added to it.  We have mentioned it as a need in our latest newsletter that you will see below, but since writing the letter it has become an even bigger need as the pressure to pay it off has become more intense.  

We realize not everyone is able to help us in a financial way.  But if you are, would you please consider helping us with this need by sending a gift to one of the organizations listed on our page?  If you cannot help in that way, could you please pray with us that our God who has provided for us so faithfully in the past would do so again in this moment of need?  Either way you can help, we are thrilled to have you partner with us in this exciting ministry.   We hope you are encouraged as you read our latest news in this link below...

   Sept 2016

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Welcome Baby Jeremiah!!

A new addition to the HOH family arrived this evening with the birth of Jeremiah Liam Justin.  He weighed in a 3.7 kg, just over 8 pounds -- a big baby for us -- we are used to the under 4 pound crowd!  
Both baby and mother are doing great.  By this evening the doctor had given Fafane one hour to give birth or he was going to have to do a C-section... we are thankful everything went well.

Thank you so much for your prayers together with us.  We are excited to have another "grand" baby in our family.  And he has many "moms", and "dads" waiting to show him lots of love.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Prayer needed

Good Evening, we hope this blog post finds you all doing well in your respective areas of life.  I know I promised you more stories of my latest travels to the HOH and the goings on there -- and I will be posting more about that.  But for the moment, we have an important prayer request we wanted to share with you.

You might remember last summer when I went to Haiti I attended a wedding of one of our girls, Estephanie (Fafane).  She is expecting their first child and has been having some issues since last month.  She is 8 months along and has started to have contractions.  While we are thankful that she was able to hang on a bit longer than when the troubles started at 7 months, we would like the baby to stay in just a bit longer!  The doctors have admitted her to the hospital and she is on bed rest.   They are watching her blood pressure closely and we are just waiting to see what will happen.

Please pray for Fafane, her husband Ronald, Linda and the medical staff giving her care.  You can see Fafane and Ronald here in this picture (along with our boy Mits).  

On the same praying note, continue to pray for Lyse.  The doctor in Miami has the medical report now, and we are just waiting to hear from him if anything can be done to help her out.

We appreciate your prayers on our behalf very much.  We are very blessed!  Thank you for your part.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Catching up

I am back from my trip to Haiti.  It was a wonderful time for all of us and as always ended too soon!  I have many stories to share and hope to do that in bits and pieces over the next few weeks.  

Of course, seeing my two girls just made my trip and we spent as much time as possible together over the weeks I was there.  Every time we had a chance to hug Nannie (on the right) would tell me, "I'm not done with you yet" and the hug would go on for a while longer.  They are both doing really well though, and Lala (on the left) is just a huge help to Linda with all of the younger kids -- I'm so proud of both of them.  Lala brings a seriousness of someone who knows the importance of bringing order out of chaos, and Nannie comes along behind and brings an insatiable joy to every aspect of life.

Another highlight for me was finally getting to hold little Lyse.  What a precious little girl.  I was surprised to see how alert she was; she is a fighter and is just fighting for her life with all her might.  Here we are...
Every day is touch and go for little Lyse as she can hardly go a week without needing a blood transfusion.  This makes each day stressful for her mom and dad as blood is not always easy to find.  They asked me to pass along their thank you to you all for keeping them in your prayers.  

On my way into Haiti, I received a phone call from a friend in Miami who has a doctor friend who wants to see if he can help us help Lyse.  While we do not know if anything really can be done to help her complicated condition(s), we are so thrilled to have that possibility arise.  I was able to get all the information we needed to write a complete medical history for her.  We have sent it to the doctor and are just waiting for him to get back to us with his thoughts.  

In the meantime, please continue to remember this family in your prayers.

Some other prayer requests at this time are:  
  • I will be traveling again this week, heading to our friend Bonita's wedding in Ontario.  I'm really looking forward to seeing a number of our good friends and supporters, and also excited to have the chance to swing by our great supporting church in Simcoe.  
  • Linda is already busy in getting things together for the new school year.  She has many uniforms to get made as well as decisions as to who should study in which school.  One of our biggest needs as the start of the school year looms before us is the finances to pay the tuition, books and uniforms for the year.  Please pray with us as we watch God supply this need.
We appreciate you all and the various ways you help us bring hope to the children and youth of Haiti.