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May 2022 Newsletter ~ Ministry Update

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*For a printable/downloadable copy of this newsletter, please click here * Dear Friends and Family, We want to start by thanking you for the love and support that you give us. We are so blessed by your care for us, and we thank God often for you. In this newsletter, you will find a ministry update of what God has done through us this school year, an introduction to our two Haitian employees, and a HUGE life/ministry update!  This Year In Ministry God has done such big things through us this year, and we praise Him for that! It’s an honor to get to be used for the Kingdom.  Matthew has spent the school year teaching “the boys” - 3 of the Haitian boys who live in a group home. These boys were in need of a teacher to homeschool them because they were not thriving in Haitian school, whether due to learning difficulties or the age gap between them and their classmates.  Partick is 15 and is in 4th grade. He says, “I love homeschool just for Matt.  I love Matt a lot . Matt is really nice. He

Si Bondye Vle (If God Wills)

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     This week has taught me the meaning of “si Bondye vle.”  This is a phrase used in Haitian culture.  It means “if God wills.”  Our driver says, “See you tomorrow, si Bondye vle.”  Friends say,  “I’ll meet you on Friday, si Bondye vle.”   It drives me nuts when people seemingly say it out of habit,  not with their hearts,  because it’s just another empty phrase.     But this week, it has meaning to me.  This week has taught me to keep “si Bondye vle” at heart.     If God wills,  I’ll finish out the year with my students here at Morning Star.  If God wills,  Matt and I will go to the States in the summer.  If God wills,  we’ll head back to Haiti in the fall.  If God wills,  we’ll live to serve Him another day.     But Bondye does not always vle .  It’s not always His will.      Sometimes,  your friend loses her cancer-ridden husband unexpectedly in his sleep.      Sometimes, another friend loses a brother to unexpected health problems.      Sometimes,  yet another friend loses a bes

Shortages

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Gas in Haiti is $15 a gallon, if you can find it... most people can't. Why? Gas is at the ports. It's here in Haiti and ready to be delivered. But gangs control the ports. And truck drivers are on strike until they can safely deliver goods (gas, water, food, etc.) without being robbed or kidnapped or killed. And the government can't afford to buy more gas. (They subsidize it for people.) And in a country where everything  runs on generators, this means more than people not being able to drive. Hospitals are closing. Grocery stores aren't going to be able to keep food cold. As I already said, goods aren't able to be delivered. Taptap and motos aren't able to run, and those that do still have gas have doubled their prices. And communications are a problem, because cell towers run on generators also. Because of all of this, and the increased gang violence, people are protesting, and everyone is staying home for at least the next couple of days. Our wifi is still wo

"I'm mad, Miss. They're stealing my childhood."

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  "I'm mad, Miss. They're stealing my childhood." Words I don't think I'll ever forget. The words of a disheartened 11th-grade boy as we took a day off learning a few weeks ago and talked about life instead. The class said that all they get to do is go to school, go home, and go to church, because of the turmoil here in Haiti. This was after yet another pastor had been kidnapped in the middle of his sermon, but it was before gangs moved in closer… before they fired at a school bus on its way to a different school… before Haiti earned the #1 spot for the most kidnappings per-capita in the world.  It was also before a gang kidnapped a bus full of 17 Americans as they were on their way to the airport from an orphanage. Until this point, Americans hadn't been much of a target for kidnappings. So how does this affect Matt and I? In ministry, not much.  Matt is still teaching, and it's going really well. The boys are on track for the school year, and Matt en

One Month Together in Haiti

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I can't decide whether to say "It's been a month already since we came to Haiti," or to say, "I can't believe it's only been a month."  Time seems to go by both quickly and slowly. What I can say is that it's been a busy, fun, overall-good month for the two of us.  We got to spend our first few days here with good friends, which was a nice transition from life in the States with family surrounding us, to life here in our home and no one around throughout the week.  I say "throughout the week" because we still get to spend the weekends with our amazing friends. We are so grateful that they are always welcoming to both of us. God has really blessed us with such good friends. All of our friend's kids (12 in total so far) have taken a liking to Matt, whether because he's joined in their soccer games, or played Connect 4 with them, or just because. Little two-year-old Nesi completely shunned me at church yesterday, but gave Matt a bi

Headed to Haiti

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Well, this is it… our last week in the States. We got our plane tickets today and will be headed to Haiti on Friday, August 6 ! What a beautiful summer it’s been. It started with finishing up wedding planning, then getting MARRIED!!! , then honeymooning in Hocking Hills, then spending a lot of time with family and church family. We’ve been blessed this summer. We are so excited to get to Haiti. I’m looking forward to having one less goodbye, going together with Matt and starting life there together. It will be so good to not be alone. Matt is looking forward to meeting all of our friends there in person, and getting started in the ministries God has put before him.  We will spend our first few days there with friends, then I start work on August 9, and Matt will start soon after that. God has been so good to us, guys. So good. We didn’t know where we would stay once we got married, and my grandpa had an apartment he let us live in. We didn’t have anything for the apartment, but Matt’s

Let Me Tell You About My Matt

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  Her shoes are the shoes of a woman on a mission. Her shoes take her to places she never dreamed of going.  They walk on grasses and walkways in Ohio, when she is with her family and loved ones in all the places that are familiar and comfortable. They walk on the dirt of Haiti, where God has called her to, where she teaches, ministers, evangelizes, helps, and encourages. They’re under her at church when she’s praising God, at school when she’s teaching and influencing young lives, at parent teacher conferences when she’s building up her kids in the eyes of their parents. His shoes are the shoes of a man of devotion.  They will take him farther than he ever imagined. They walk the sidewalks of YSU as he learns new math skills and teaching methods. They pace the halls of the homes of those he loves and serves. They’re under him at church as he soaks in the Word, at school where he prepares for his career, during free time when he studies and learns and grows. They’ll take him to his fin