It's been basically an un-eventful week in Dupity. Daily scattered showered tease us, but seem to only provide needed rain to the higher country. We are thankful for the clouds - as it gets very hot when the sun is shining full.
Saturday, Maddie, Eric, and Mike worked with a group of kids to paint two classrooms. Gary (along with Max and Baba) worked on installing a solar panel at the Nun's house. It felt so good to finally DO something. I'm sure it's selfish of us to want to do this... just to make US feel good. On the other hand, if we never felt useful, I suppose we wouldn't have the incentive to come back. I pray God will forgive us this selfishness.
While two rooms now have beautiful coats of paint, you can turn around and see the rest of the school which still is bare and very rough conrete block. I see things as analogies - so I see the paint as simply a band-aid to cover the hurt. Perhaps it will lift the spirits of the youth who attend there and 'perhaps' give them a daily reminder that we are with them in solidarity. I also fear that the paint is an analogy for the help we provide overall. Yes - we do commendable things: sponsoring students, bakery, clinic, nutrition center, orphanage, parish... but in the end, is this just a band-aid for the incurable wound that Haiti endures? A quick glance around at the fires in the distance reminds us that the forests are only a couple of years from being gone. Then what?
Allergies, headaches, minor scrapes, and a slightly upset stomache are the normal inconveniences we endure - but are nothing compared to what they deal with daily. So we offer it up as part of our Lenten sacrifice for the people of Haiti.
Today we met with the students we have sponsored - probably 150 or so were present! That was a sign of hope! Even some who had already graduated came back to say 'thank you'. They sang, danced, put on a skit, and presented us with gifts as a token of appreciation.
Hard to believe just one more day here in Dupity. We head toward Cap Haitian at 3 am Tuesday morning and hope to be back in our own beds Tuesday night. Less than 20 hours of travel-time, but a WORLD apart.
Maddie and Eric and already talking about coming back. That's the best sign that the people of Haiti still can touch our hearts if we give our time to visit. I pray that somehow God will show us to do more than just "put a band-aid where it hurts".