Yesterday evening the team did get to go on a walk around the village of Labrande. Fr. Effener took the team for a 2 hour tour that had the team traveling all over the village and even a little beyond. The travelers were in total awe of what they were seeing and grateful that Fr. Effener took the time to show them the village that he loves so much.
After returning from the walk, the group gathered for a dinner of fried chicken, French fries, and fried plantains. Needless to say, this dinner was a crowd favorite!
Before tucking in for a great night of sleep, the team waited until dark to do some stargazing. The village is very dark at night and the crystal clear sky lights up with the glow of stars, uninhibited by any other lighting. A beautiful and peaceful sight to behold.
The team was up bright and early for mass at 6:30 am. Breakfast was a delicious meal of spaghetti, hard boiled eggs, passion fruit juice, coffee, and hot chocolate. The travel team LOVED the hot chocolate. Over all they are enjoying the food much more than they anticipated!
After breakfast, the team walked down to greet the children for the first day of summer camp. They were overwhelmed to see all the excited faces smiling back at them and running forward to meet them. The camp leaders, called animators, had the children organized by size and lead them in many different songs and dances. Our team was invited to step forward and lead the group in singing “This Little Light of Mine.” The 2012 missionary team taught the song in English and it has become a camp favorite. After each verse in English, the animators taught the children how to sing it in Creole. Some of the animators are returning from last year including Jimmy, Daniel, Eric, Ramon, and Jimmy’s brother, Eddie. The animators remembered Carol from last year and asked about the other members of last year’s travel team. They also remembered fondly how Carol taught them how to do the Charleston at last year’s camp.
The children had cheese sandwiches on freshly baked bread for breakfast. During camp, John spent time with the middle school boys and Kelli was with the middle school girls. Kelsey found herself helping out with a large classroom of the youngest boys and girls while Carly was with mixed classes of 1st-3rd graders. Before lunch, all the children at camp started working on crafts. The middle school boys were making macramé bracelets while the girls were making bracelets using colored rubber bands. The children enjoyed large bowls of rice and beans for lunch.
Our travelers took a break from camp for lunch which consisted of rice with a Haitian sauce, plantains, and crab meat in a green sauce.
This afternoon, the church grounds were filled with the angelic sounds of the choir practicing songs that they will sing for the upcoming feast day of St. Anne celebration. Fr. Effener is planning to take the team into Gonaives tomorrow for a tour and restaurant dinner.
Please continue to keep Carol, John, Kelli, Kelsey, and Carly in your prayers as well as Fr. Effener and the children, teachers and animators at the camp. Also, feel free to post encouragement to the team in the comments section.