The Christmas festivities are well under way here at the HOH, inspite of the fact that we have not yet received most of the Christmas gifts off the boat. The boat is in, just not unloaded. The kids don't seem to mind, because that just means we'll have to have another party of some kind to pass out the gifts when they actually do arrive, prolonging our festivities, probably into the new year!
This past Sunday was our annual Christmas program. This year the kids and young people, specifically St. Germain were in charge of everything. They worked out a program earlier in the year, were responsible for having rehearsals, and making sure everyone knew their part. Linda and I did absolutely nothing for the program. We were able to sit in the audience, and watch it for the first time with everyone else in attendance. I must say, they did an incredible job, and lest you think that is just me being a bit prejudice, everyone who was here to see the program told us the same thing. There were more than 200 visitors crowded into our home to attend the program, and with a perfect mix of music, poems, humor, skits and messages of the true meaning of Christmas, everyone from the children to the adults was satisfied and encouraged.
Our days have been filled with end of the year school activities like exams, and Christmas parties, as well as having a number of visitors here at the HOH. Our last group of visitors left about a week ago, and now everyone is done with exams, and all the meetings and parties have been attended, and we all feel like we can take a deep breath and relax a bit. We were all in need of some vacation days, and it's been nice to be able to just spend some time together relaxing in the evenings.
Tomorrow for Christmas Day we'll be having the entire HOH family in for a meal, that includes all the staff, kids, and friends from the community. It total we'll be about 200 people, and Linda and the girls are busy preparing for the meal preparations. I'm so glad they are good at cooking for such events, and enjoy doing it.
We really enjoyed having my family here to visit, and they helped us make up a lot of decorations for the HOH for Christmas. My Brother in law made some Christmas trees out of plywood, and the boys learned a lot from working with him. My sister Emmy brought stockings for the kids to decorate, and then to use to decorate the house, it does look very festive, and all the colors and decorations just makes the kids' faces light up!
The day after Christmas I'll be heading back to Port-au-Prince to attend a friend's wedding, then I'll be back up here a couple of days later to help with our New Year's Eve party. So the activity never stops around here!
As we are busy celebrating Christmas in our special ways, we want to send our wishes to you all for an incredible Christmas, and a very joyful New Year. What a privilege it is for us to be able to bring the wonderful story of hope in Jesus, the One who was willing to come to earth as a little baby, to live among us, to die to pay the price for our sins; who rose again, and offers eternal hope to all who believe in Him. This story continues to go out from the House of Hope, and it is our prayer that it brings you all hope as well at this special time of the year.