The mission of Hope For The Hungry is to "Share the Bread of Life with a Starving World". God has called us to serve people who suffer from hunger that is both spiritual and physical. According to scriptural mandate, we offer food for the body and salvation for the spirit to those who do not know Jesus Christ and will suffer eternal death without Him.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Remembering Haiti

Friends of Haiti,

As you know, we have reached the one year anniversary of the earthquake that devastated Haiti on Jan 12th, 2010. Jean Alix called this morning and asked that we pray for the people of Haiti. He said that today is going to be an extremely hard day for the entire nation…. Please continue to pray for our Haitian brothers and sisters. Pray that this day would not be one of mourning, but of restoration in the Lord: in a God of HOPE. Pray for the many Haitian churches that are reaching out to the lost and broken, that they would be able to share the Love and Hope that can only come from Him. Pray that the “God of refuge and strength” will lift up the broken hearted. Pray that the Lord will, “turn their mourning into gladness, and give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow” (Jeremiah 31:13b).

On the news, all that is being shared is the message of defeat and brokenness in Post-earthquake Haiti. I wanted to remind you, in the midst of such negativity, of the joyous amount of HOPE that I’ve experienced. I was in Haiti over New Year’s and have several encouraging stories to share.

1.) Dec 31st marked the end of the “40 Days of Prayer” event that the Guibert church had been participating in. Because of that, and New Year’s Eve, we had a HUGE celebration that lasted from 6pm on Dec 31st to 5:00am on New Year’s Day. This celebration was the most amazing thing I have ever been a part of… and it was just that: a CELEBRATION of what the Lord had done 2010. We literally danced in the New Year, before the Lord, with 300 of our closest Haitian friends! For the first 45 minutes of the year, we spent time in prayer, thanking the Lord for the past year and praying with anticipation for what he has in store for 2011. It was beautiful to watch these people, who had experienced such a traumatic year, worshipping and on their faces before the Lord, thanking Him in the midst of their pain and suffering.

2.) In previous years, my experiences of Haiti have mainly been with our boys and girls in our homes, some of our school children and a few church members. But because of the earthquake, we have been able to get outside of our “typical” ministry sites, and go into the community and create relationships there. As of today, we have helped build 34 homes in our villages! That means we now know of 34 families (ranging in size of 2-25), with whom we have worked side-by-side, building them homes. During the New Year service, I began to notice how many faces I recognized… began to put faces with names and houses… began to match the school children with their parents. And these were people who were LEADING in the service: leading the group prayer, singing solos, reading scripture! The Lord encouraged my heart with this visual of how much of an impact our ministry is having on the community as a whole. We have been able to serve the leaders in the church, and walk alongside them in their ministry, encouraging them as we go!

3.) Ronald is a 10 year old boy who was abused and forced to beg on the streets of Petionville. The Lord brought Ronald to our boys’ home on Jan 11th, 2010. On the next day, the streets where Ronald roamed, were shaken and covered in the debris from all of the buildings that collapsed that day. If Ronald hadn’t been lovingly taken off of these streets, the day before, he would have been crushed by the rubble. When I met Ronald, 10 days later, he was a broken little boy, with no hope or joy in his eyes. He had never been to school, had never been loved. Over this past year, I have seen him develop into a beautiful child. He is no longer the broken shell of a boy I met at the beginning of the year… he now has the hope and joy of the Lord in his heart! When he was sitting by me at the New Year’s celebration, a few weeks ago, he took the pen out of my journal and wrote his name in cursive on his hand, so proud to show me how well he is doing in school. He wrote out all of his numbers, 1-120, in my journal, along with many other words. In that moment, I was overwhelmed with the Lord’s protection and Divine plan for his life! He has come so far in just one year, and I am excited to see what the Lord has in store for him in the future!

I wanted to share these stories of HOPE with you, to let you know that the Lord is doing amazing things in our midst. He has used you this year to go, pray, and give to the work that He is continually doing. We would not be able to have our ministry without people like you who give, so that others can see the love of Christ in action. You have been responsible for sharing Christ with hundreds of people this year, who have been devastated by tragedy. Most importantly, each one of the people we’ve assisted knows the help comes from Christians, who love the Lord.

Thank you for sacrificially giving to our ministry. Please continue to pray for the people of this beautiful nation.

Jen Sutton

Monday, January 3, 2011

Day 7

Haiti Day 7- 1-2-11
Today was our last full day in Haiti. We woke up and went to church with our Haitian friends. It is so good to get to worship with them and see what it is like to worship in spirit and truth. They asked us to sing a song on very short notice. It was alot of fun. After church we got to hang out with the boys for one last time. All of them were wearing the sunglasses they got for christmas. We began the hard process of saying goodbye. It was hard because in such a short time god has really impacted our lives and theirs. After goodbyes and hugs were shared we went back to the house where we had a birthday party for Stephen Sarah and Ryan. They had decorated the house with balloons and streamers and we had purchased a cake. We shared a great meal together and enjoyed the cake. After dinner we hung out for a while, played football and sang songs. We were able to pray for the pastor and his family which was a really sweet moment. We had our last team time and processed what all had happened this week. Our eyes were opened to new things and our hearts are broken. But god is good and is teaching each of us new things. We ended the night with encouragement and prepared to leave. Tomorrow we leave...
Pray for our transition back to life in America and for our hearts.

Day 6

Haiti Day 6- 1-1-11
Wow. Words cannot describe our experience. Last night we took part in a Haitian celebration of the new year and the end of 40 days of prayer. We had worked a long day, but it was far from over. We left the house before 8pm and arrived at the church and orphanage. The program had already begun, but our boys were in their rooms so we went and saw them. They greeted us so warmly. Our necks were hugged and checks were kissed. We then went in and joined the service. The only way to describe the service was true and genuine worship. They sang with their whole hearts, danced around the room, let out cries of praise, and read scriptures. It was do great to be apart of this. They took a short break and passed out coffee and tea at 11pm, and then started back up. There were many people who sang solos and group numbers. Our group got to perform as was awesome! The night ended at 4:00am when they served pumpkin soup. Not necessarily what we wanted. We then waited for our ride to show up. We eventually got home at 5:25am where we crashed. We slept til noon then went to the boys home. We got to hang out, play sports and practice english. We brought 2 special treats for them. The first was s'mores. They loved them and had marhmallows all over them and us. The second was a Christmas present. Each of the boys got a bag of goodies which included a bible, sunglasses, a toy car and more. They loved them and it was a blessing to get to give it to them. We are now back at the house for dinner and some team time before bed. We get to go to church tomorrow and spend a little more time with the boys.

Pray for us to finish strong. Pray for our hearts to be prepared to leave Haiti and come back to Texas. Pray for knowledge and wisdom of what to do with the experiences we have had here.

Day 5

Haiti Day 5-12-31-10
It is really weird to think we are spending new years eve in Haiti. However it has been a great day. We went back to Marotierre at 745 this morning and finalized our painting with as much paint as we had and cleaned the school. We ran out of the wall color and were not able to get as many coats as we would have liked, but it looks a ton better. As we left Marotierre we rejoiced because we had finished our task and cleaned the school, but were sad because we would not return. On our walk back up the mountain, we passed out dum dums to everyone that we passed. It brought smiles to everyones faces, and made us pretty popular people. After Marotierre we went to a restaurant where we ate lunch and went shopping out in the market. We allgot some good stuff. After this we took a nap, because we have a long night ahead...

Day 4

Haiti day 4- 12-30-10
Today was a great day. It has been a lot of fun and we are very tired. We worked extremely hard at the school and almost finished. But we have a few touch ups and a lot of cleaning to do. Our team worked very well together and we have had a lot of fun getting to know each other. Our Haitian friends taught us some songs in creole. All in all a good day.

Pray for us to complete the work on th school tomorrow. Pray as we attend and participate in a new years eve celebration service that starts at 6pm and goes til 4am...pray for our hearts as we will have to begin preparations to leave and come back to Texas.