Sunday, July 17, 2011

Haiti Update: July 2011

Hello Dear Friends and Family…

I thought it would be a great time to put out my July update.  I know it is a little bit early, but it has been quite an eventful week already and the next four weeks will be pretty full.  The last trip to Haiti was a very successful one, which provided a lot of information for me to use on my upcoming projects.  I will share more about those later.

Last Sunday Laura and I had the opportunity to go on a motorcycle ride with some of our best friends.  It was a great ride and we topped it off with some frozen yogurt in Oxford, OH.  About 1:00 AM I woke up with some pretty good cramping in my lower stomach and I figured it was another opportunity to deal with lactose intolerance.  By 8:00 on Monday morning it was becoming pretty obvious that it was something more serious so I went into the emergency room (by way of urgent care first) to see what was going on.  I was diagnosed with appendicitis and by 6:00 PM had an appendectomy and was not feeling much of anything due to the medications.

We praise God that this did not happen while I was on one of my trips to Haiti or two days later in the week.  Why two days?  Well on Thursday morning, we loaded up our Jetta and drove from Ohio to California… non-stop.  That was a 36-hour drive and we are sure glad that it is over.

We are now in northern California visiting with my parents with a full agenda of activities scheduled over the next few weeks.  It looks like I will be setting up my office on their porch over the next two weeks to do my work.

Next weekend my family all comes together for their annual reunion up at Lake Almanor.  The weekend after that Laura and I head back down to the San Francisco Bay Area to participate in my daughter’s baptism into the Serbian Orthodox Church.  While in the Bay Area I have various meetings set up with different executives to discuss what we (ESMI) are doing in Haiti and looking for opportunities for partnering on different activities.

After these meetings Laura and I are heading down to San Luis Obispo to meet with various professors in the College of Architecture and Environmental Design at California Polytechnic State University.  This is where I went to college (many years ago).  We will be exploring possibilities of finding areas where work being done at the college might be able to come alongside of our work in Haiti.  These should be some interesting discussions.

From San Luis Obispo we head back up to the Bay Area for my daughter’s wedding.  Our return trip home will be by way of Las Vegas where we will be meeting with a church in the area and exploring additional opportunities for partnership.

We are excited that God has lined up so many opportunities to share our story and the work that is being done in Haiti.  Please hold us up in your prayers as we work through these next four weeks.  I still need to move at a slower pace in order for my body to heal effectively.  I need wisdom to be able to do the follow up work from my last trip.  As I shared in my last email here is what remains on the list of activities that I have on my plate at this time:
  • Design, estimate, and help secure funding for the orphan homes to be built at Mapou.
  • Redesign, estimate, and help secure funding for the buildings at the university in Jeremie.  This includes the Cafeteria/Fellowship Hall, the Administration Building, the Classroom Building, the Dormitory and the Visiting Staff Bungalows.
  • Design and estimate the school to be built at Maniche.
  • Modify the design and estimate for the school and medical clinic to be built at Savannes.
  • Plot all of the GPS information gathered on GoogleEarth.
  • Update our assessment information on all of the sites visited.
  • Continue raising my personal support.  For those of you that have been following our support raising progress we are now at 45% of our monthly needs with pledges and have had an additional 27% come in through one-time donations, putting us at 72% of our needs for this year.
All of these are critical so please pray that I will be a good steward with my time as I work on these while visiting with my family, conducting the meetings planned, and participating in my daughter’s wedding.  I guess that is not too much to ask is it.

A couple of other prayer requests…
  • Please pray for Pastor Guercy Meme.  He has become a very special friend to me as he has hosted me so much while I have been in Haiti.  Today (July 17th) he and Evelyn will be joining in marriage in New York.  Please pray for them and for Guercy as he too is in the process of raising his support.
  • Also please prayer for our very special friends, the Moad family.  John’s mother passed away this morning after a long bout with cancer.  It is a bittersweet time of loss and rejoicing that she is now finally free of the cancer and at home in heaven.
We are so thankful for your prayers, your thoughts and your continued support for our work in Haiti with ESMI.  You are all in our prayers as well.  Please continue to be praying for the people of Haiti as the rainy season ramps up and hurricane season is fully upon us.  There has also been a rise in cases of cholera across the country and the people are so vulnerable at this time.

Remember... In all that you do: Walk with God and Follow your Heart!!!
God bless you and have an awesome day!!!
Esse Quam Videri