Thursday, April 4, 2013

Haiti Team Journal (Part 4)

Sunday, March 24 

Church began early; 8:15 a.m.. Although we couldn’t understand a word of it, as it was in Creole, we still enjoyed observing and experiencing the service. 

One thing we noticed was how the Haitian people took great care in preparing for church, and it was pretty neat to see the pressed white shirts and sharply creased pants of the gentlemen, and the fancy shoes and neat, attractive clothes of the ladies. Children, too, were dressed quite elaborately. 

The singing was impressive: they put their whole heart and soul into the songs they sang, and it went on for quite some time! Although the church service was more than 2 hours long, much of that time was taken up with singing. 

After church, we had more opportunity to experience the friendliness of the locals. Then, because the cooks were off Sundays, we made soup for lunch and relaxed for a while. 

Later in the afternoon we went for a walk past farms and through the village. We saw many cows, bulls, goats, and skinny dogs!

Then we walked up a mountain to some voodoo caves. Our numbers kept growing as we walked; many small children joined us, some wearing clothes, some not.

Inside the cave, we observed an altar and some other voodoo paraphernalia.  Further on, we saw some ancient Taino inscriptions (the Taino were the original inhabitants of Haiti, but were completely killed off by the French during colonialism). 

Riley cut down a voodoo “hanging noose” with his machete (oops?). He recounts his story here:  "We were in the cave. It was dark. We were coming near to the end of the tunnel. We had to start the climb up through the tunnel to the top but in front of the tunnel was a rock tied to a piece of string which was tied to the top of the cave (the top was only five feet high). I thought it was some kind of voodoo tradition and I decided to cut it down with my machete that I just bought. When I started cutting it down; our guides, Reuben and Kelly, told me to stop. Unfortunately, they spoke in Creole and I did not understand so I cut it down anyway. It landed in a tin bowl with a “ping!” They then told Jason they weren’t scared of it; they were only scared of what might happen to me.  But it was too late, I had already cut it down.

After exiting through a smallish hole on the top, while others clambered around the outside, we started to head back to the mission compound.

Jason and the kids jabbered in Creole most of the way back. After a dinner of “Haitian goulash,” we visited with Nelson, an ex-witch doctor who had been both married and baptized the day before. 

It was amazing to hear how God worked through His Word in Nelson’s life and made him a different person.  
Written by M. Roseboom

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