John Landry Testimony
(John Landry is a young man who was on our Summer 2018 Mission team)
Dear Deacon Lloyd, I want to thank you for allowing me to participate in the Haiti Mission trip. It was the most amazing and heartwarming experience of my life. It was awesome to see all of the homes, water wells, and etc that y’all have made possible for the Haitians over the years. The relationships that I have built with the local Haitians, I will always treasure. Mrs. Tina, Therese, and Thomas were phenomenal leaders on our trip. It was inspiring to see how much love they have for our brothers and sisters in Haiti. I hope to one day be able to participate in a Haiti Mission Trip again. I definitely plan to still be involved by doing my part in the fundraising, awareness, and prayer role. Thank you again and God Bless you and your family.
Sincerely, John Landry
Rio Cave' Testimony
Rio Cave is one of the translators that Haiti Mission, Inc. has been using during our mission trips. He is an excellent agronomist and has lots of understanding of the Haitian culture and societal structure. He has been given high praise by our evangelization team and other members of various teams for his sensitivity and accuracy at translating. His agronomy skills have come to our particular attention after the 2018 mission season as the small farm that he has developed with members of the community has begun to be very productive.
He offered the following unsolicited testimony: “As a young man, seeing how awesome Haiti Mission, Inc. teams are working and contributing to my Haitian neighbors has caused me to want to share also. Although I don’t have much, I love to share now what I have. I can truly testify that watching an organization such as Haiti Mission, Inc. is truly amazing and is the first time I have seen this type of results from any organization working in Haiti.”
Misery to Poverty
People often ask us how are things in Haiti. Brian Schmidt is a Canadian winegrower and restaurateur who has been travelling to Haiti with HMI teams once or twice a year since 2013. I know you will enjoy his explanation and testimony.
“I was moved by a comment Deacon Lloyd made at dinner one night... Nancy Greenhaw (one of our professional photographers and a Renewal Ministries evangelist) asked Ms. Faie and Deacon Lloyd to tell us about the history of Haiti Mission... how it all began .. to speak about specific milestones that had been achieved over the 18 years they have served the community .. This alone was SO powerful... While they spoke, Nancy recorded them... so for about 10 minutes Deacon and Ms Faie just spoke.. we learned that when they began to travel to Numero Deux, Haiti there were no animals.. maybe a cow or two, a handful of goats and a few chickens... Homes with dirt floors that would turn to mud in the rain.. The MANY effects that the water wells have had on the people... The effect that Albendazole (parasite medication that is regularly distributed) has had on the health of the community.. The establishment of the schools.. feeding the children and SO much more.. During Deacons “stream of consciousness” he stated this..
“We have taken this community from Pitiful Misery to Poverty.. I was not able to shake this passing comment he made that evening... HAVE YOU.. REALLY? Was the question that came to mind. Maybe along the airport road and places that are easy to get to, I felt like there surely must be some misery still present..
The next days I made a point of looking for traces of “Pitiful Misery” I traveled by motorbike to the walking paths that do not allow a mule to go... I fell upon many of usual homes we expect to see. Close by these homes were animals grazing.. pigs snorting, lambs crying.. chickens getting in my way.. I heard radios playing music.. saw small portable solar panels charging phones that most certainly almost everyone under the age of 40 has.. I was pleased to see well kept gardens tended by families that I was not familiar with.. each joyfully taking my hand, some would hug me and a few would kiss me when we would meet.. each person was in (relatively) good health .. Deacon was right I could find no traces of Pitiful Misery.. Consider HOW quickly the community recovered after Hurricane Mathew which literally destroyed the region in October 2016. Haiti Mission HAS moved the “needle of need”. Haiti Mission has given hope to the entire community.. It is true!! ... WE still have MUCH to do.. and we will continue to help these communities prosper...As Kristen Wheeler (another HMI missionary) said.. “Brian always needs sunglasses.. but not always because of the sun”.. I find myself tearing up many times daily... the despair inevitably takes hold of me...and I quietly fear.. can we really do enough!!
Deacon gave me a beautiful gift that evening - he renewed my faith that we are making a difference.. We all continue to be blessed in so many ways.. We all share these blessings with our Haitian brothers and sisters.. They in turn teach us to be thankful.. to be joyful, to be faithful..
We boarded the plane at 9:00 on Tuesday morning... it was a gorgeous clear day.. the path that the plane took seemed to be a little closer to the coast line.. we were offered a clear view of all the tiny villages scattered between Jeremie and PAP. When we landed Ms Faie asked me... (not knowing I had been quietly exploring the comment Deacon made) she will only learn of this when she reads this reflection..
Ms Faie turned to me and said... “Brian.. I need you to help me..I need you to help restore my faith”... I was breathless for a moment.. She continued .. “In all the years I have been coming here I have NEVER seen SO many homes and communities along the coastline... HOW are we going to Help them all??” I replied .. “In Numero Deux you have planted a seed... Have faith that it will grow... We will ALL make sure it does. Deacon Lloyd, Ms Faie know this .. The legacy you have created in Haiti will continue long after we are gone .. With Love and Renewed Faith
From a member of the March 2015 mission. “I got so much out of this trip…more then I could have ever dreamed! These people do have a way of getting into your heart. Wonderful work is being done over there by a great group of folks. I am humbled to be a small part of making a difference in their lives! I enjoyed sharing this experience with everyone…we had a great group…family included!!-:) I’LL BE BACK…..”
HERE ARE A FEW TESTIMONIES FROM THE CANADA TEAM TRIP March 2014
Alyssa Cronin 17: “My favorite part of this week, it was really cool to just be immersed in this culture for a week. You really learn about how other people live. We’re so privileged and we don’t even realize it. This morning when we hiked up the mountain we saw people who were walking down to their school and we realized they do that every day, because we got so tired walking to the top. It’s a big hike and they have to do that every day. It was really cool to see the water sources and the water wells; we don’t have that in Canada. It was really interesting. (In the Churches) I really liked the praise and worship, their hymns and their singing was really different. We don’t sing like that (in Canada) at all. And all the people are so passionate while they were singing. It was very inspiring for me.
The very first night when we were asked to pray over the people I was kind of like uncomfortable and like unsure, but by the end I totally loved it. And it was, I guess, good for me. I don’t know, I don’t have words for it, but it was really great. I really liked going to all the places in Jeremie and going to the prison and handing out food there and going to the orphanage and holding the kids and seeing them and also distributing the bags to the people. It was really a lot of fun and when we distributed the bags, seeing the look on people’s faces and how grateful they were, that was awesome too and you guys were all awesome this week and I had a fantastic time.”
Jacob 18: “Overall actually I had a fantastic week from seeing little kids smiles come onto their faces, and singing in the church, and also laying hands on people and watching them. I never done that before, that was a really great experience I thought. I truly felt that God was working through me to get to those people. It was great meeting all of the team. I had a blast in the week and the food was great. Coming on the trip I didn’t think of it too much as a vacation, but as the week went on I truly felt blessed by God. It was one of my favorite vacations ever because knowing I’ve done some great things for others. A very meaningful trip.”
Kyle Cronin 15: “On the plane I had mixed thoughts, like was I insured, and riding in the Jeep I was a little bit scared. Throughout the week it got a lot better and I loved it. I fell in love with the place. I just love going to church every day and I really liked the praise and worship and just the singing of everyone, it was so loud and had a lot of power behind it. The place is beautiful too and I like to explore. That’s just one of my things, yeah that’s it.”
Luke 16: “My favorite parts were praise and worship, Gerardo playing the guitar. I really like that and seeing all the people happy and even that they were very friendly, I liked that. I also liked going to the beach the first time, it was pretty sweet. The food was great. I almost got rammed in the butt by a cow. And I also had fun with you guys.
Scott 18 the older twin: “I really came this week a bit sour because originally we were supposed to go on vacation to down south. I was a bit sour with that and then I said what ever. I didn’t really get into vacation mood until Friday morning because I had grades and I was stressed with getting all of that done.
“I honestly thought we were going to be in a tent shack thing and we would be borderline starving for the whole week, but it turns out that it was nothing at all like that so I felt really blessed because the whole week shows you what you take for granted, just like brushing our teeth and that we have running water and stuff like that. For them it’s a big deal. They have to go and pump every bit of water that they want to use every day. That makes you aware of how much water you actually use.
I actually loved everything this week, like going to the beach with the little Haitian kids and them looking up to you and grabbing your hand. Also praying over people I thought was really cool too, I’ve never done that. And that is something that I got more comfortable with as time went on. The scenery here is amazing. The food was absolutely amazing. The top of my vacation was when we were at one of the houses. I saw this old man and he just looked kind of down. I saw that he was wearing two different shoes so I said to myself, “this is the guy I am going to give my shoes to. So I just gave them to him and to just see his face that just touched me, I love that. You know it’s like something that I would’ve like just thrown away a few months ago, but to see the joy in his face after he got the pair of shoes. He was like following us. He came to our vehicle to thank me again afterwards, and it was really powerful, it was unbelievable.”
Tyler 16: “Some of my favorite parts of this week was going to the beach. I liked the praise and worship, that was awesome. And I liked praying over people and distributing the food, it was a really great experience.
Liam 11: “The best part of the week was blessing people in church and I liked going to the beach. I really liked how we went to church almost every day and yeah that’s all.
Amy - Mother of 6 children: “This was my first mission trip and it’s something I remember hearing about in high school, but was nothing that I ever had the opportunity or time to do it. In our family we were never exposed to all the things our kids have the opportunity to do. So this week I kind of lived through them I think, just watching them experience all these firsts, but doing it in such a profound way. The children set an example for all of the adults I think on this trip. From the beginning of our trip to the end all of the kids have been fantastic, and the way that you got along and the way that you just glorified the Lord. The way that you just jumped right into praying over people and that’s a difficult thing to do for the first time, that takes a lot of courage and all of you excelled at that. You should be really proud of what you’ve done now for the people that are here, but also for yourself and what you will be able to do when you go back home in your own communities. So for me that was the most exciting thing.
About Sam Even the youngest: “ I was a little bit apprehensive about bringing my six-year-old to Haiti. I thought I was just crazy and I have to admit I had a few sleepless nights. I didn’t know where I was going to be, and the day before we left he said, mommy I don’t want to go to Haiti. And I said oh honey why don’t you want to go to Haiti? And he said I have three reasons, one I don’t know where I’m going to sleep. And I said honey you can sleep close to me. Two, I do not know how to play with those kids because they do not speak the same language. And I said well Sam the soccer ball is a universal language and we’re bringing along a whole bunch of balls with us so we got that covered. And number three mommy I just really like my home. And I said well now you going to get to see were other people live and what their homes are like.
As soon as we set out I knew it was the right thing to do for our whole family. And being this is my first mission trip I learned a lot about the culture, but beyond that I’ve learned from these people and that they love their children the way that we love our children and they love God I think sometimes better than we love God, and they sing with such glory that it was inspiring. When they would start singing thank you Jesus or Merci Jesu it was just this heart filled love, and I thought we could really learn from that.
Emma 8: “I loved how we went to the beach and how we went to praise and worship and healed others.
Natalie7: I loved telling jokes with crazy Lloyd and going to the beach and going to praise and worship. That’s kind and nice because we really don’t go to church very often. (Huge laughter) I mean not like really every day, but also walking and being here with you guys.
Noah 13: “We all had a great week Eh? I liked all the nights that we went to church, doing the bags for the distribution, that was kind of neat and I liked going to visit the school and to visit the orphanage and the churches I thought that was pretty nice. This is probably one of the best weeks I ever had.
Barb Runstedler - mom of 7: “This is my first mission trip. Initially I wanted to bring our children on this mission trip, but thought it was going to be something different than what it turned out to be, something way better than I thought, knowing that God brought our family here in his time. We’ve talked to Lloyd and Nancy about a mission trip for a long time and God truly ordained the timing. And seeing how our children and the Cronin children totally responded to God and let the Holy Spirit lead them to minister to people of all ages blows my mind. The kids were just vessels of the Holy Spirit. I see some vocations born here. I cannot sum up all of the encounters with Christ. I personally feel like I encountered Christ every day through the children of the orphanage and the people that came to get their packages.