Christmas is a special time at the HOH. For some of the kids, they've never celebrated it before and they get all kinds of stories from the kids who have experienced it already. We love to make it a big and exciting time! It's the time of year we get the chance to give them all kinds of new experiences from decorating the house to giving each one gifts to call their own and special meals all together as a family with our staff. But even more exciting is the chance tell them the great news of Jesus through the Christmas story. They learn the songs and story and have the chance to put together a program to share with the local community. As you can imagine these are busy days at the HOH!
This week we were able to purchase some paint to give the house a nice face-lift. It's been a while since we've been able to paint the entire building and it was really starting to look run down. Thanks to some special gifts from supporters we are able to do it this year. No sooner did we get the paint then the boys started on the work...
Rosnel helps with scraping off the peeling paint
Evelte's job was washing walls and doors
Junior (and others in the background) sanded down the walls.
Today the actual painting was supposed to get started. Meanwhile those with a more creative talent went to work on some wall art...
Dieunel (pink shirt) & Reginald (blue shorts) supervise the creative corner
The final product is the name House of Hope on the right and a quote by Martin Luther King, Jr. on the left. The quote says, "We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools." Then there is the verse, Mathew 5:9.
Once the painting project is finished the Christmas decorations will start to go up. But the kids don't have to wait for the decorations to start getting a twinge of excitement for what is to come. The gifts and other things for the season have started to arrive. Our friends in Miami completed a shopping list with many items on it that we will need for the special party and meals. Among those items were some nice new hand-sewn clothes from some ladies in Indiana. As you can see by the smiles on their faces -- they loved the new clothes and with them the anticipation for what is to come is just building.
Once again Grace Baptist Church in York, PA has put together Christmas bags for each of our kids as well as our staff. The totes filled with these gifts arrived in Miami last week and will be on their way to Haiti soon. A big thank you to everyone who put so much work into helping us make Christmas a special time for the kids. For some of them, this might be the only one they ever celebrate, we want it to be filled with happy memories.
Some things to keep in your prayers in the midst of all this activity at the HOH are:
- Davens once again got sick with some disturbing symptoms (he's in the above picture on the far right). Our pediatrician referred him to Port-au-Prince for some tests to see if they can figure out what's wrong with him. His mom took him to PAP to see a doctor a couple of weeks ago and unfortunately we have not heard back from them since then. We are waiting and hoping to hear something soon.
- Jamesley's medicine should arrive in Haiti this week. We are so excited for him to start his treatment. Wouldn't it be so great if he could be healing and even walking in time for Christmas? Keep him in your prayers.
- The kids will all have exams soon to finish out this trimester of school. Linda tells me they are working hard and hope to come out with some good marks. Pray for them as they study over these next few weeks.
- In the middle of all of this activity is Linda. She's incredible at keeping things running. Pray for her health and strength. Also pray for the young leaders helping her: Jn Daniel (finances), Junior (communications), Iverlande (Kitchen), Mirlène and Agate (child-care).