The Haitian Donkey Praises the Lord for Answered Prayer

Hi All:
I know that many of you have been faithfully praying for us as we left for Haiti on Saturday, charged with several projects to accomplish. The only tickets Tom Failing and I could find were through Philadelphia, so we started at the airport at 3 am. The trip went well, ie no speed bumps, Tabitha Sheen (our nurse practitioner friend from our years in Africa) and her niece, Elizabeth, were with us from Lauderdale on and their baggage came off almost immediately, Tom’s and mine were the very last 2 bags to come off and we rejoiced that all was intact. We were able to get through customs without a hitch. Again thanks for praying, as we had a lot of inhalers to bring in, among other things. Inhalers are almost impossible to get here (I can buy them from IDA in Amsterdam, but they give me a $500 extra charge for “dangerous goods” for each container I ship them in??) so the poor patients with shortness of breath consider them close to gold when we give them out. Our trip home was slow in the dark, as lots of truck traffic on Saturday night, but we got home about 10:40 at night and put away what we needed to and settled down to a second short night, but thankful to be here with all our goods.

We prepared well for the most stressful project, to resolve the administrative issues, but hit a brick wall with lengthy deliberations with the mission headquarters all day Monday.  We were told we needed to wait until the full board met NEXT Monday, and they wanted my presence, something very difficult for me to accommodate as I have missed considerable work of late with my infection/hospitalization, etc. We were discouraged, but this morning, Duane and I tried to resolve things directly with administration and, we are still praising the Lord, we made great headway. As of today, the situation is resolved and I think everyone can get back to their normal tasks. I cannot thank you all enough for your concern, prayers and support of us all.

With all the administrative headaches I had to attend to, I was very thankful that Tabitha could work in the OR with Dr. Moise to keep that going while I was tied up. After we resolved the above issues, we had a meeting with all the staff to explain the changes that will be in place from this time forward. That went well, but I had to delay a hysterectomy as I needed to be part of that larger procedure, so we started late in the afternoon. It was pure joy to do it with Dr. Moise and Tabitha and it went very well, a great way to finish a long and difficult day. So, we are relaxing tonight and getting ready to work the rest of the week doing what we normally do, work in the hospital and clinic.

Duane remained behind (Ruth left at the scheduled time this morning) to help me with the headaches and to change locks, etc after all was said and done and I appreciate his willingness to do so. He and Tom are revising the bathroom in Physical Therapy to allow the doctors to take a shower when on call in the next room, a big encouragement for them. They also are working on the Chaplain’s house, putting in the plumbing, the septic tank and skim coating the walls. They also do a ton of “smaller jobs” that go a long way to keeping the hospital going, as maintenance is a foreign concept here.  Tabitha and Elizabeth also keep us well fed with delicious food morning and night (we eat with our Haitian OR crew at lunch, our normal routine).

All in all, it has been a productive, though stressful, week so far and we thank the Lord for his sustaining grace throughout this all.

In His Service,

Bill, Duane, Elizabeth, Tabitha and Tom (and Ruth ’til today)