Monday was both our first day of class and our last day with our team from Northern Ireland! After doing lots of service projects, touring ministries and a medical clinic, the only thing they really still wanted to do was “get out in Haiti a bit more.”
There are lots of touristy ways to do this, but the best way I know to get into people’s lives is head for the hills. Enick, one of our graduates from 2009, has been ministering on an incredibly remote mountain village since he graduated, and yesterday seemed like the perfect chance to show our Northern Irish friends more of true life, to give our Vietnamese visiting professor Nheim the chance he’s been looking for to be a part of the “real” Haiti, and to visit, pray for and encourage Enick.
After chapel, at 12:45, I mentioned to Leme that we’d be doing this at 1:15, and he asked if it was ok for a few students to go along, if they wanted…thirty minutes later, I had 7 first-timers, and Lily, heading over the hills with me.
I know Matt thinks hiking voluntarily in Haiti in August on the first day of school is close to purgatory, but I love everything about it. And yesterday–with such a neat group of men and women with such unique cultural experiences and world-views and perspectives–was just SPECIAL.
How awesome to experience that with him.
The students, of course, were a bit nervous that I had lost my way. “It doesn’t seem possible that there is a church somewhere out here! How does he DO it?” they marveled, and I saw the wheels turning. Jacsene was especially moved by all the hundreds of people we greeted.