Van Dams’ Reflections from Haiti

Howard and Ruth Van Dam and family serving with Christian Reformed World Missions and Sous Espwa
Five churches from North Ameri­ca answered our call to come and work on the MCD’s future confer­ence room. In four weeks, theseteams worked side by side the Hai­tian construciton crew to see the completetion of the roof and interior wall finishing. During the last week, a scafolding fell and three of the Haitian crew members were rushed to the hospital. We are thankful that they were not seriously in­jured and were soon back to work.

Haiti’s annual Kanaval is one of the largest Mardi Gras carnivals in the Caribbean and North Amer­ica. The celebrations are funded by the govern­ment, businesses and wealthy Haitian famillies. Haiti’s version of carnival begins in January each year and ends on Mardi Gras, which is French for ‘Fat Tuesday’. Mardi Gras is the Tuesday be­ fore the Roman Catholic holiday known as Ash Wednesday. Ash Wednesday marks the begin­ning of the Lenten season, a somber period of fasting and penance that precedes Easter for Catholics (wikipedia). During these months, one never knows what one will find on the streets.

Prayer Requests and Praises

1. Please pray for rain. Haiti has been very dry (nearly three months without rain). We praise God that we have received some rain­ fall this past week, we really need a steady dose of rain to replenish the earth and al­ low the farmers to beg in planting.

2. Our daughter, Natasha is checking out colleges for next year. We are praying for wisdom and direction as she is looking at several options.

3.A recent visit by the mission represen­tative of the Reformed Church in America showed a strong interest to partner with Sous Espwa and our partner organizations. We praise God for that and pray for a grow­ ing relationships for the benefit of our part­ners and the glory of God.

4. Praise God for the teams that ha


ve come down to work on the Ministry for Christian Development’s conference building. We need two to three more North American teams in order to complete that project.

5. We are in contact with a potential Volun­teer Construction Manager who wi ll assist us when teams come down to work with us. If you want to put a team together , please consider January or February of 2015.