Sunday, June 29, 2014

C2 - Haiti Trip Update

Our Travel Team had a wonderful first day getting settled in to Labrande. Sunday Mass is a major event in the community, and some people walk over two hours through the mountains to attend. The music is beautiful with a Caribbean sound made by bongo drums, keyboard and saxophone and an energetic choir.  Fr. Effener introduced the team and invited Bruce to address the congregation in English while he translated into Creole. Fr. Effener thanked Nativity for helping to support the camp for the children.

Mass lasted close to two hours and then everyone was ready for lunch of rice and beans with shrimp.  There was a dessert of fresh orange and banana juice over shaved ice, a refreshing treat in the heat of the day. After lunch, the team walked through the village, escorted by Jean Rouvens -- a graduate  of St. Anne's school who is known by previous Nativity missionary teams. Jean Rouvens now attends secondary school in the city of Gonaives, about 45 minutes away, and is  home for the summer.

Although the team had been prepared for the conditions of this poverty-stricken mountain village community, the reality is more stark than they had realized. Many of the dwellings are little more than small cinder block structures with a tarp. Yet, the parishioners came to Sunday Mass in crisply starched and ironed clothing, after walking a long distance to get there.

The team will turn in early tonight and attend daily Mass at 6:30am, before the children arrive for the first day of camp at about 8:30am. They practiced more Creole with Fr. Effener and Jean Rouvens so they are ready to meet the children.

Keep praying for Bruce, Carol, Connie, Erin and Jen as they connect with the children, animators and teachers tommorow. You can also leave them encouraging comments which they will be able to see here on the blog. Check back for more updates on our team soon!


  1. I am following you daily. May you return with renewed energy and wonderful stories to share.

  2. Greetings from the Haiti travel team! We are well and can't wait to tell you about the exciting day we had at the opening of summer camp. Fr. Effner is taking very good care of us, and the people of LaBrande couldn't be more welcoming. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. Nou make'm (We miss you)

  3. Dear Haiti Team: Thank you for your commitment to missions. I pray you all experience the power and grace of God during this trip. Kathleen Leslie

  4. Praying for all of you and for this amazing community of believers.

  5. We are waking up to a beaurtiful morning in Baltimore & thinking of you while you are attending Mass today. I can only imagine the energy & enthusiasm generated by 200 children, all eager to get on with camp and the business of making friends with all of you! Good Grief-two hours of walking to get there? Can you imagine how exhausted we would all be if we had to walk two hours to get anywhere? This is such a wonderful opportunity to nurture those young spirits. Good Luck and God Bless,.Let those Little Lights shine, my friends...Peggy