Welcome to LESPWA International's blog. Please follow our page to learn about our work in Haiti

Friday, October 18, 2013

Learning flexibility :)

“You cannot come in” – That was our response as we sat in front of Saint Marc Prison this morning. All of our supplies had been freshly unloaded from the truck, including a heavy generator. It turns out today was a national holiday and the guard that had told us to come had forgotten about the day. So, our team packed right back up, and returned to the house in MacDonald. This was a perfect example of never being certain of plans made in Haiti. We did make the most of our time though. The ladies divided up the three large bags of laundry detergent for the prison into 450 smaller bags, and pastor Michel, Julio (translator friend) and myself (Timothy) went out to street evangelize. Both jobs were quite effective. This afternoon most of the team labored in dental and medical at the house. They were able to see many of the locals and missionaries. Tonight we are headed to an American couple’s house to have pizza! We’ve already had pizza once before, and we now get to have it again. I must say our dinners at night have been quite satisfying. Tomorrow is our last full day. The plan is to head to Michel’s school and do clinics there. Saturday we fly out! Prayer Requests: - Pray for a great last day tomorrow. That God would use us in any capacity for His kingdom. - Health mentally and physically. The combination of heat and long days can be draining. So far our team has been doing well. Please continue to pray. - Timothy’s hopefully going to share in the local school. Pray for wisdom and God’s direction.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Update from Lori!

We just returned from a full day of clinics in a village that we've visited once before with Pastor Michel. 
Then up bright and early and on the road by six am as we were taking Annie back to the airport.  Sad to see someone leave the troops.  We always become a very tight group as space and culture forces us to do so. 
 The vehicles are holding up well so far this trip! Definitely a blessing. 
Tonight the group is cooking spaghetti. We have had some nice hospitality and amazing pizza last night with pepperoni we brought in. Johnsonville sausage is a real hit on tortilla shells with mayonase... don't knock it till you try it!   We have had our share of granola bars also of course. 
So, for a walk back to the home to see how many noodles are left in the bottom of thepan. ;) We appreciate your thoughts and prayers.Prison ministry starts at 9 tomorrow and then more clinics after.The non-medical people have been very busy with VBS andsome wonderful crafts-thanks Challise and all!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Teamwork in Prison Ministry

Can't believe that its already Tuesday night!! The days have been filled with activities and many tasks keeping the time flowing quite nicely. Yesterday we  a little farther up the mountains toward a little school close to where Pastor Michel lives to do clinics and dental work with the people there. We also had a few people playing games, painting nails, and singing songs with the younger people. It was slightly difficult because we didn't have our own translator for the kids. It really is amazing to watch people and see how God equips them to improvise and do what it takes to interact with the people!! It has been great for our team to really step out of their comfort zone and learn to follow God's leading. It is quite physically taxing at times but so rewarding in the end. 
Before we headed up to the school we went to the prison in Saint Marc to do some ministry and clinics there. It was slightly frustrating though because we went to help the prisoners with their teeth and all the guards wanted THEIR teeth done. They could easily go somewhere else to get their teeth done but since we were there and they could get it for free they decided to get to have it done. There isn't anything we can do about it either because they wont let us come back otherwise. It is just so sad to see how their system is so corrupt and very unjust. In each cell there were almost 20 to 40 men. They only have one fan and absolutely no windows. Some men and boys end up staying in the prison for years on end because their system says that you are guilty until proven otherwise. A lot of times people end up going in and they are not even guilty to begin with! It ended up being an awesome day though because there was a YWAM group that was stationed in that area for a few more days so they decided out of the blue to come and minister to the prisoners as well. They didn't even know we were there at that time. Before they came they prayed for two things. A microphone, and someone to lead some singing and the gospel message. We ended up being able to provide both of those requests! It gave me goose bumps to be able to sing to the people in the prison with fellow believers that were here for the same purpose as we were. All coming together to fulfill God's calling for every believer. And just the fact that our group had been used to answer someone elses prayer request.. It really brings me to tears to think about how privileged I am to be able to live in the country that I do with the things that I need when I need them. And to have the eternal hope of salvation and know my future is sure. I also thank God for the opportunity to minister to others even if it means sacrificing my wants. We will be doing more clinics these next few days and will post again maybe tonight if not in the near future!! Thanks for following us! All glory and honor to God!! AMEN!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

An update from LueAnne

  Hey all...Hannah did such a great job of updating...just taking advantage of the electricity and adding a bit more.
  Being here among the Haitian people has already brought such blessings. Spending time with the missionaries that live here and seeing their dedication  is truly inspiring. What a commitment!
  The ride from PAP was tough... it was very hard to see the road with the rain and glare of headlights. With Wes driving, us praying through it, as well as the great singing coming from the rear of the tap tap, peace covered us throughout the trip....in spite of hitting a stray goat and loose lug nuts, we did arrive safely!
  Due to the heat SOME of us slept soundly...and others not so much even though we were exhausted. HOWEVER spending time with Michel and Joanna's family and friends at the wedding shower on the beach was refreshing. We had ice available and I literally iced my shoulders, arms, and face... I could feel the ice melting at breakneck speed. I slept pretty well after that! Actually even covered with a sheet!!
  So enjoyed sharing the Gospel with the children this am. The three of us who stayed behind prayed for an interpreter to be present to spend time with the neighbors and, praise God, that is exactly what we received. We spent 2 hrs sharing, coloring, and doing chalk graffiti on the walls... Wrote Jezi renmen ou (Jesus loves you) and had the kids write their names which led to great conversation about God and His love :)  We enjoyed playing music with the kids at the children's home.   Love to sing songs  the kids know in both English and Creole...great bonding time!!!  
   Thank you all for your prayers and love... they carry us!!
   With love, LueAnne Bestul
   P.S.  Please be praying for us as we go out and do prison ministry and village ministry for the next few days...very full week ahead!

An update from Hannah

Here we are again with more news on things that we have been doing here in Haiti.
So yesterday we had the opportunity to have a wedding shower for one of our beloved friends and translators Michel. We went out to a beautiful location on the ocean with a private beach and PLENTY of food. For some of us it was our first experience eating Haitian food. Rice and beans with goat and fish. Fresh avocados and fruit that they provided. It was a huge blessing considering it was our first complete sit down meal since we arrived. It was nice to rest up for the work that we knew was ahead of us. Also, a chance to catch up with old friendships that had formed from other visits.
The night before last we all had quite a bit of trouble sleeping due to very hot weather and mugginess. But God seems to know right when we need things most and provided a very cool evening last night and we all slept peacefully! Speaking of sleeping, we found a crab crawling around one of the bedrooms and decided to cook it and try some!! I am surprised though the crab didn't die from shear panic of all the frightened girls jumping around and yelling instead of boiling water!!
On another note we have been learning to still live without running water and electricity. Although, at times the power does come on and we all crowd the fan like kids around candy! It has been an awesome experience to see how people really live here in Haiti and to submerge ourselves in the culture by living like they do and not having the comforts of back home. I also think it has brought us closer together and really made us bond as a group.
We went this morning to a few different locations to do children's church. The first place we had around 30ish people and seemed to gather more the longer we stayed. We then went to one of the fishing communities to have another one. We had brought a craft along and were not sure if we had enough for all. Lori said we should just start passing out and the Lord would provide! Sure enough we had JUST enough for all the children and were able to give out the supplies to each one there!! To add to the excitement we had to ride motorcycles back to our house and got to really experience their transportation. It was great fun! Three of us stayed back to color pictures and draw with some chalk on the cement walls with the neighbor kids. We also were able to share the gospel with them and pass out some more gifts and tracts.
Overall today has been very rewarding and its great to see how God is working.
That's all the news we have for now but will hopefully be able to post again soon!! God Bless and we will all see you again soon!

Friday, October 11, 2013

A busy first day!

  • Greetings from Haiti!! Just wanted to take a minute to update the blog and tell you all what is happening so far!! Yesterday after arriving at the airport, we were met with heavy rainfall and a locked door on one of our vehicles that we could not get open! After deciding it was just going to stay that way, we started the drive to the house where we we'll be staying in MacDonald. On the way we met with heavy traffic right in the heart of Port au prince and didn't arrive for another 6 hours!! Feeling very blessed in spite of the heat and bumpy roads on the way here! We all slept really well and today we finished getting settled in, visiting people, and following up on relationships formed from past trips! We also got to take a tour of their new school here in MacDonald. On our way home from the school we were heading down the hill and Brie said she didn't feel well. She turned white as a ghost and fainted right there on the path! It collected quite an audience! She is just fine now though, and has been downing the water ever since! 
  • We came across a man with a highly infected finger. The finger was so bad that it appeared to be almost to the point of needing to be amputated. Annie and Brie washed and wrapped the finger as best as they could and gave him some antibiotics. We were also able to provide money for him to go and get the shot that he couldn't afford that will hopefully take care of the infection. Metson translated for us while we prayed for not only his cut, but for his salvation as well. 
  • We will be doing some clinics and prison visits over the next few days. Hopefully we'll be able to post again soon!! Pray that our example of Jesus will be strong and that people will see His love through us! All glory and power to God our creator! Thank you!!
  • Hannah

Thursday, October 10, 2013

On their way again!

Well the team is on their way yet again to Haiti! :) This time with a group of 8 faithful workers. They made it safely to Florida though it sounds like it was JUST in time to catch their next flight to Port au Prince. But they made it! Praising God for His protection thus far and looking forward to updating again when there's more to report! 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Final Photos from the Trip

Well here are the final photos from this past trip! Enjoy!! :) 

 Tuesday morning time together in God's Word at our house looking into the Proverbs 9 and Hebrews 11

 Tuesday morning clinic at the basketball court was more informal with some 2 on 2 and 3 on 3 play

Our last time together playing with the younger boys of Macdonald at their basketball court

  Tuesday midday on one of our last walks through the streets with the children on our way back to the house

 Tuesday late afternoon in a rain delay before our final championship basketball game - will we be able to play or not

After the rain stopped as the court dried off we did the drama called "Line-up" for those who were gathered to watch the game depicting Christ dying for our sins

 The singing of our national anthem before the final game with Lori as our standard bearer

Then the Haitians followed with singing their National Anthem with Metson- a joyful believer in Christ and also the "president" of Macdonald- holding the Haitian flag

    With the championship game finally underway we hit one of several 3-pointers in the first half to help build a modest lead

   A second rain delay during the second half of the game afforded some boys the opportunity to play a little soda bottle soccer

    With the game underway again another big rebound is pulled down to help seal the victory- one of many defensive boards that we had

    Our scoreboard - the chalk hash marks on the wall - show the final score of a well contested game

    A familiar scene following games and the last time we had an opportunity to congratulate and visit with our new friends

    Wednesday morning packing up to get ready to go home

   With the bus packed  and ready to go we make one last stop in Macdonald before hitting the road

  Not too far down the highway we have our first flat tire

 And a little ways farther we have our second flat tire

Another disappointment - after arriving with time to spare we get word from an airline official that our flight to Miami had been cancelled because of a tropical storm

And yet another time of waiting overnight in an airport begins - this time with the uncertainty as to when we would get to go home

The Lord at work through our experienced, gracious, & persistent "Mom"- with a cell phone borrowed from a helpful airport worker - to secure arrangements for our stay and an earlier flight home

Passing some of the early waiting time with a game of Uno

Wednesday night - the highlight of our evening in the airport was a sweet time of testimony & prayer & song - something we would have missed had our flight left as scheduled- what a rich blessing from the Lord

Thursday morning with our flight taking off from Port au Prince - farewell Haiti and thank You Lord

Thursday midday - we are on the ground and happy to be back in the USA

Enjoying that our cell phones worked again and calling family from Miami

With the rescheduled flights we had to leave a few of our teammates behind in Miami to fly in two hours later to join us again in Chicago

Thursday late afternoon - a loving reunion filled with hugs and smiles at OHare

Two and a half hours later another joyful reunion at OHare

Thursday night - our last walk together through an airport and ready for our ride home to WI

The sign we saw as we arrived at Spirit of Life Church in Fond du Lac - it says it all

Our final circle of brief testimony and prayer before we part ways - thank You Lord Jesus for a life changing experience

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Home Sweet Home!

The team made it safely to Fond du lac and should be reunited with waiting families right now! :) Praising God for all the wonderful stories and testimonies that were already shared during the drive from the airport. Sounds like God was definitely at work in quite a few lives. Some Haitian, some American. ;) Looking forward to hearing more for sure and thanking God for safe travels all around! :)

Delays and Lessons in Patience

Well after a whole lot of rain, wind, confusion, cancelled flights, and waiting time, our guys are finally in the air! PTL for His timing. :) So, the plan is they arrive in Miami in about an hour, and from there they have 2 flights they're going to be coming to Chicago on. 13 of the group will be flying home on the first flight which is scheduled to arrive in Chicago at 5:50 p.m. and 5 of the group will be flying in on the second flight which is scheduled to arrive at 7:50 p.m. A prayer request would be that somehow there would be 5 extra seats on the first flight and the team could just fly home together. They're going to try for that when they get to Miami. :) God can definitely open doors and orchestrate things like this!
 I know everyone is anxious to have their brothers/husbands/friends home again but keep in mind, the guys have been learning flexibility for the last 10 days in the very unpredictable country of Haiti. Now God is giving us a chance to learn it as well. ;)
Thanking God for His protection over the group and please continue to pray for strength and opportunities to serve as they head home today!
Lydia- for the group :)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A Whole Bunch of Pictures!

Friday eve - basketball game in Macdonald with the Choir Kids from Port au Prince

Friday eve ball game with the Choir Kids

Friday night after the ball game visiting with the Choir Kids

Friday night singing with some of the Choir Kids

Saturday AM opportunity for Timothy to share the gospel with some of those gathered at the basketball court

Saturday AM time with the Choir Kids helping bag laundry soap for the prisoners in St. Marc

Saturday Bible School time - doing the Lineup skit

Saturday Bible School time - doing the Mosquito skit for the children

Saturday Bible School time - loving the children with our play

Saturday Bible School time - loving the children with our touch 

Saturday Bible School time - singing with the children in Macdonald 

Saturday Bible School time - telling the children about how God's Word can come alive in them 

Saturday mid-afternoon soccer game against young people from the community 

Saturday mid-afternoon soccer game in Macdonald 

Saturday mid-afternoon soccer game when we scored one of our three goals - we won't say how many they scored 

Saturday night at Club Indigo for some relaxation and some more familiar food

Saturday night in the ocean at Club Indigo 

Saturday night supper together at Club Indigo 

Sunday AM on our way into worship in Port au Prince 

Sunday AM preaching on the need for strong men in the Lord to be leaders 

Sunday AM skit by the team 

Sunday AM worship in Port au Prince 

 Sunday bus ride with the Choir Kids to lunch after worship

Sunday lunch with the Choir Kids 

Sunday lunchtime - we have had a wonderful time with the Choir Kids - it has been a joy to join hand in hand with them - even literally with a little arm wrestling 

Sunday visit to Felix's home in Port au Prince - the young man with a special connection to the Seibel family 

This morning, Monday, Coach is feeling much better after a good night's rest 

This morning, Monday, on our way to visit at the prison in St. Marc 

This morning, Monday, waiting to go into the prison to minister in song, drama, witnessing, and giving out small gifts 

Tonight, Monday, both teams as friends after playing an energetic game under the late afternoon sun

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to HIM be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen." Eph 3:20-21