Saturday, February 13, 2010

We are here!

10, I didn't mean for it to be so long before you heard from me. Nothing really in particular has been keeping us busy; we've just been trying to get things back into a more normal routine. We were able to start up some of our Bible Studies this past week, and will hopefully have them all up and running by next week. One of them I'm really excited about, as the older youth here are going to help Linda and I teach "God's Plan for the Family" to the next level of kids under them. We also have about 10 boys from our local community who want to participate as well, so we are very excited about these lessons starting up. We were supposed to start early Jan. But well, you know that didn't happen!

The kids attended school from Monday to Thursday, and now have a few days off (some of them have a few days, others will start again on Monday). Everything is up in the air these days, and seems to change daily -- making me hesitant to say anything about what might or might now happen next week. There are many people with differing views of whether school should start or not, and some places around us have refused to open their schools. So we'll see where that all ends up. Our kids say that their classes are full and overflowing with the students who have come up here from Port-au-Prince. Some even have to get there early or they won't get a place to sit for the day!

The Government of Haiti declared several days of prayer and fasting across Haiti as the one month anniversary of the earthquake came. Yesterday we spent the entire day having prayer & praise meetings with our kids here at the HOH, and today we had meetings throughout the morning. It is always good to get together with our kids and sing and pray, and read the Bible. We had numerous youth from the area join us, as well as patients and families from the hospital who heard the singing and came up to join in. Since the hospital is so close to us, even those patients in the hospital could hear us and were able to participate as well.

Most of our prayers were for Haiti; the government and people...for people to really seek God's face, and turn to Him, not just for a little while, as an emotional response to the catastrophe that took place; not just for these few "official" days...but truly and wholly seek Him. Our prayers followed Micah 6:8, "He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God". Please pray with us that out of the hard days of this past month, God would raise up men and women as leaders in Haiti who are willing and ready to do as God requires.

Judith, Andrine & Michka continue to heal well here at the HOH. We are looking forward to having someone coming this week to help us know how to better help them work through the emotional and psychological issues they and others are dealing with. Suze had a really rough week, she started with a fever, and then ended up having to go back to the OR for her leg. We are just watching and praying for her, the doctors still aren't sure if the leg is healing sufficiently, or if they are going to need to amputate it higher. She remains in very good spirits, and we appreciate your prayers for her as well.

Our numbers are right around 100 these days, when you add all the mom's who are staying with their malnourished children, and other family members staying to help out the injured girls. Put that together with the 60 + young people from the area who hang out here at different times, and the house is a pretty busy place. Friends who stopped by this last week both asked the same question, "Is it ever quiet around here?". Well, the answer is not often, but it does happen, on rare at about 2-3 am, if you are up to hear it...and happen to catch the dogs sleeping and not barking as well!

We are looking forward to a several weeks of visitors starting this coming week. We have three different groups (totaling 5 people) arriving this coming week. 3 of the people are only staying 2-3 days, and the other 2 will be here a week. Then the next week we have 2 more groups (3 people total), one just for a day or two, and the others for a week. Then the week after that is a group of 2 staying for 2 weeks. Getting here is still a big challenge as the commercial airlines are not up and running yet, so it is taking a lot to work out the logistics. We'd appreciate your prayers as we receive these groups, and also that they'd be able to accomplish the things they are coming to do. Also, if you don't hear from us for a bit it's likely because we are a bit busy with all the visitors...

Thank you for your generous support over the past couple of weeks. Thank you for your response to the material and financial needs we have. Thank you for your prayers and encouragement. It is wonderful to be in ministry with such great partners as you all! God bless...

1 comment:

arly5 said...

I am writing to see how we might be able to help the House of Hope. I spent a couple of months in Lapointe in the winter of 1993 during my pediatric residency at Vanderbilt University Hospital. During my time there, I was especially touched by the children at the House of Hope. Since the recent earthquake, Haiti, especially its, children, have been on my heart.
We currently homeschool our five children and they along with five or six other families from our church are participating in a reading rally. We would like to use the funds we raise to help children in Haiti and are trying to determine the best way to go about doing this. Do you have any specific needs for the House of Hope? I am not yet sure of the amount of money we will raise, but it will likely be between $600 - $1,000.
I would appreciate any thoughts you may have on this. I realize that we could just send a check to Crossworld but it is always nice for the kids to know a tangible way that they are helping.
Thank you so much for your service.

Arleen Ratliff MD