Friday, 8 February 2013

Mission to Haiti a Success

Haiti Mission a Success
By: Diane Henry
Feb 2013 issue of Rusagonis-Waasis Community News

It was a labour of love and a mission of faith as 15 Rusagonis residents embarked on an 8 day journey to Haiti last month with the hope of helping three families build homes from rubble. The group from the Rusagonis Baptist Church spent a week in the earthquake ravaged country between January 7th -14th picking up rubble by the handful.

They managed to fill nine dump trucks with debris—enough to build three houses—as well as laid the foundations for two homes.  Pastor Brent MacDonald and his wife Wendy led the group to the impoverished town of Grand Goave.

“What we take for granted in our own homes is so important to these people,” said Brent.

The working mission was part of a larger project by Conscience International and Canadian Baptist Ministries to re-construct the country out of the rubble left behind by the devastating quake of 2010.  Many Haitians are still living under makeshift homes of tarp and sheet metal.

“My fire wood lives under a tarp,” said Wendy, describing the stark contrast between our way of life and the current reality for most Haitians.

The homes being re-constructed measure about 12 X 16 feet, what would be considered large enough to be a bedroom in most Canadian homes. “But to them, they’re getting the world,” explained Brent.  “They are so pleased with so little.”

Gathering up the rubble from what used to be homes and businesses was back-breaking labour but it also held unusual dangers.  “I did not expect to find so many critters,” said Wendy. “There were scorpions and tarantulas.”

Their hard work has paid off for three families, but the MacDonalds admit there is a whole lot of work left to be done in Haiti.   “What we did there was drop in the bucket compared to the need,” said Brent.

The church group will be followed by other missions groups taking up the task of helping the Haitians dig themselves out of piles of rock, cement and garbage.

“It was hard to leave without wanting to go back,” said Brent. “They were a generous, beautiful people.”

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