He brought you out of the deepest darkness and broke your chains.
Friday, August 29, 2008
He brought you out of the deepest darkness and broke your chains.
at 1:44 PM
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I never had the chance to post about our family vacation to Wisconsin Dells. I left for Haiti the day after we returned, so time was tight...
We had a fabulous time! Usually, I am not one to look forward to a trip to the Dells. The crowds, lines and craziness is not something I enjoy. It is a great place; however, to take the family for a quick get-away within driving distance from our home.
This year was different, though. We rented a condo at the Wildness Resort and it was great! We had a kitchen, family room and separate bedrooms for everyone. It was wonderful to have a place to cook, chill and spread out ~ so much better than the basic hotel room. When we were sick of the crowds, hungry for something other than concession food or wanted to chill, we would just head back to the condo.We had a great time together as a family, as well. The kids are getting old enough to really enjoy all the water parks and other attractions. They can *go, go, go* for a long time and pretty much stay entertained with things around. We are finding as the children get older, we really enjoy the scene so much more, too. They are really so much fun to just "hang" with. :)
Here is a video of the kids racing on a toboggan water slide. We met up with some friends from our town who also have children the same age. It was great for all of them to enjoy the times together. Plus, I had a girlfriend to chill with on the lazy river and in front of our cabana.
at 5:39 PM
Sunday, August 17, 2008
****This is a long entry containing A LOT!!! Thanks for taking the time to read it!
My trip to Haiti again surpassed my hopes and plans for Three Angels. I traveled with the most incredible group people; I now call friends, who share a true love for mission work, God and his people of Haiti. We saw well over 400 patients in the Halos medical clinic in 3 days, visited Mother Teresa’s Orphanage, assisted with the medical care of wound patients at a nearby hospital, and found plenty of time to play with the orphans ~ and we even experienced Tropical Storm Fay on our last day. This was by far the best and most blessed trip I have been on since beginning my work for Three Angels.
The past week was also one of the most emotional trips I have taken to Three Angels. So much was going on with the clinic and there was so much to do. We were blessed with wonderful doctors, nurses, technicians and others who devoted 8 days to doing all they could to help make a difference in the lives of the people of Haiti. Prayers were said as we asked the Lord for blessings for the patients. Stories were shared as medical concerns were discussed. Much needed help was given to so many people who would otherwise never receive any sort of medical care. Smiles were shared as children spent time coloring and doing crafts while they waited for the doctors. Each and every step in the process of a medical appointment was emotional, extraordinary and so very memorable.
Halos has truly been blessed by the medical professionals willing to donate their personal time to the mission. So many nurses, techs and doctors take time away from their families and jobs to come down and help in the clinic. This week was no exception. The volunteers were dedicated; excited and willing to do whatever it took to make a difference while sending the patients on their way full of hope. From Haitians living on the streets as well as Three Angels families to the orphans of Angel House, each and every one of them received a thorough exam and was given the best medical care Halos could possibly offer. It was such a blessing for them and for the volunteers, as well.
One doctor in particular has given so much of his time to the orphans at Angel House. Dr. Brian Mauch, a pediatrician from Midland, Michigan has come down to Haiti numerous times to examine the orphans and give medical care to so many Haitian children. He is a gentle man with a huge heart for the people of Haiti. I am honored to know him and forever grateful for his willingness to be a part of the organization. The adoptive families are so fortunate to have such a dedicated and loving professional taking care of their children.
I had the opportunity and privilege to sit in on many of Dr. Brain’s exams of the children. Seeing him thoroughly exam children using his incredible knowledge and expressing his true love for each one of them was so heart warming. His tender approach of talking to the children while carefully observing each developmental and medical concern is so sincere. He takes the time to understand each child’s needs and takes significant time to make a plan of care for each one. It brought back many memories of my children’s visits to the doctor when they were younger. The time, love and dedication our pediatrician took with my children was the same Dr. Brain gave to each and every child of Angel House.
Mike and I have been blessed with extremely healthy children, so the ‘doctor’s visit’ I experienced with Jonathan on Monday was like no other. After a thorough exam and coincidentally seeing Jonathan’s mother in the clinic as well that day, Dr. Brian had concerns. He did some research after clinic hours and sat me down to discuss his medical suspicions. Brian was able to diagnose Jonathan with a hereditary disease called Neurofibromatosis, a disease that affects the neurological system as well as many other systems of the body. Patients with this disease have the potential for many defects, disorders and illnesses through life. High risks for leukemia, neurological and renal cancers, malignant skin, brain and nerve tumors, physical, language and metal disabilities are just a few of the problems people with this disease encounter. Most of these patients also suffer from mental and physical delays, sight and hearing problems and possible debilitation further down the road. There is also the possibility Jonathan has a mild case of the disease and will lead a normal and happy life. Needless to say, Jonathan’s check-up turned into a consultation I never expected.
After discussing all the problems Jonathan could possibly face, my first thought was, “I am so grateful the Lord has blessed our little boy with a doctor for a papa!” God has big plans for our son and I know there is a reason he is a part of our family. I have great peace about what may be ahead for our little boy and feel very confident Mike and I have been blessed with the tools to take any obstacles head on. God has given us strength to face anything that may lie ahead for Jonathan, as well as all of our children.
It was highly recommended to us to begin intervention for Jonathan’s illness as soon as possible. The sooner he can receive therapies for his delays the better chance he has at overcoming larger obstacles ahead. It is also important for him to begin medical care by specialists who are able to monitor the progression of his disease. A team of doctors will need to be consulted for the rest of his life. Genetic, neurology, cardiology, and so many others, will be routine doctor visits for our little boy; and Brain believes this care needs to begin now.
With this said, we have decided it is in the best interest of Jonathan’s health to apply for a medical visa. His quality of life can very greatly upon the medical intervention he receives. We have seen our little boy thrive at Angel House over the last year and pray it continues. Under the circumstances of limited resources in Haiti, it would be best to bring Jonathan to the U.S. to begin therapies, neurological evaluations and other treatments as soon as possible.
The next month or two will be a whirlwind for us. We have many specialists to consult with, letters to request and paperwork to prepare for the visa application process. It is important that we have as much information for the Embassy to receive approval. The sooner we can get our son home the better chance he has at being cared for properly by the doctors. The sooner diagnoses are made means treatments can begin. The sooner treatments begin the better chance Jonathan will have at being healthy, cancer free and neurologically intact.
Although the Lord is the only one who knows just what Jonathan will endure with his disease, I have faith He will protect our little boy and give Mike and I whatever is needed to help our son. God already blessed us with a beautiful little boy to love. He provided Halos with an incredible pediatrician with great knowledge and love. God sent Jonathan’s mother to the clinic, and her visit allowed for a confirmation of Jonathan’s diagnosis. Mike and I have been given strength and perseverance to fight Jonathan's disease and overcome whatever lies ahead. With His faithfulness, we are all blessed!
at 12:42 PM
Friday, August 8, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
~~~~~ I posted this a while back. With the new school year fast-approaching, I wanted to try to reach out to any of my new, and old, readers. Please consider helping the children of Haiti!
The need for quality schools in Haiti is endless as over half of the adult population is illiterate. It is an amazing blessing to see Three Angels strive to decrease this statistic in Haiti. Along with the orphanage and medical clinic is the Three Angels’ Christian Academy; a one-room school for over 355 Haitian children grades preschool through high school. The school provides uniforms, textbooks and instruction for all the students. In addition, the children also receive a meal of bread and peanut butter, known as “mamba,” and fresh water each day they attend. For many of these Haitian children it is their only meal of the day.
Watching the school children enter the gates of Three Angels during my trips to Haiti is such a delight. The smiles on their faces and laughter in their voices brings such joy to me. So many of them come up to many of the missionaries to greet them with a sweet smile, loving “Bonjour,” a giant hug and soft kiss on the cheek. They share their love and they don’t even know us! However, they know because of missionary groups, they are able to go to school and even see a doctor if need be. They are so thankful for the help and outwardly display their gratitude. These children bring such happiness to me while I am in Haiti. It is because of these children, I long to return to Haiti time and time again. They are big reason why I truly understand the importance of helping Three Angels and supporting the organization any way I can!Currently, Three Angels is looking for sponsorships for each student attending IMCP/TACA. There is an endless budget for the needs of the children, faculty and school. Without the help of donations, the school could not and would not exist. A monthly support of $27 is all that is needed to directly benefit the life of a student. These continual donations give the children the opportunity for not only a quality education, but also a meal and clean drinking water each day. Most of the children currently attending TACA would not have the opportunity to attend a school without the Academy and sponsorship help. It is quite disheartening, but so very true!
Three Angels’ Christian Academy would not exist without the help of monthly sponsors. The fact that there are 340+ children in need of help to pay their monthly tuition is troubling to me. These children need our help!!! So, if any of you, my faithful blog readers, have any ideas how to pursue the help needed, please let me know! And, if YOU have found it in your heart to personally sponsor a student at the Academy for less than $1 a day, you can visit www.threeangelshaiti.org/sponsorship.htm to set up an account to begin making your monthly contribution.
at 6:30 PM
Sunday, August 3, 2008
In "six days" I will be back in Haiti. I am really looking forward to this particular trip for so many reasons...
I so loved spending a week with my entire family together in June. We had so much fun playing, made so many memories together, and spent lots of time bonding. This trip, however, I am travelling alone to work with the medical team. I am so excited to help out in the clinic where ever needed.
I am also going to be traveling with a dear friend of mine from Ohio. She and I have the same love for Haiti. It is going to be wonderful to see her again and experience our heart-felt passion together, serving our Lord and His people in Haiti.
Junior will be heading back to Haiti with the team, as well. My family had a wonderful time getting to know him last month. I am really looking forward to seeing him again and seeing first-hand how he is feeling and doing after a three-month stay in the USA.
And, certainly, the reason I am most excited about this particular trip is this....
at 9:11 PM