Loose ends and Loops
-Yvonne and I spent last week in Haiti. Three nights we spent in tents in the rain worrying about the 1.5 million homeless, and for 3 days we were at a hotel with Haitian church leaders.
-Relief and recovery is hard word and tears people apart. Partly because everyone is fatigued to the bone, one of the tasks is to keep the team together. Because the task is so huge hard decisions have to be made and no one can make everyone happy.
-We're working under Haitian superintendents team. Their decisions set our priorities. I think they're doing an exceptional job.
-We were able to spent a few moments alone at the graveside of Erlin, Jeanne, Merle & Gene. The bodies of the latter three were recovered by the U.S. military, positive identification was made through dental records and they were laid to rest on church property.
-We now have a preliminary count of Free Methodists who died, in the western district, of about 100. Probably fewer died in the southern district, but still no count from them.
-I take a quick trip to Chile, leaving this afternoon, to encourage them in the relief effort and to find how we can better help.
-I know of at least two of our pastors who lost their houses (Alex & Nelson). The quake area was very near the center of our churches in Chile and the Chilean FMC has been a first responder.
-The Chileans haven't received much notice on the international scene because people are "tired" of earthquake news…after the Haitian quake.
-Yvonne and I had a wonderful time at the marriage retreat this weekend hosted by the Northgate FMC in Batavia, NY. Seventy-five couples and very-well planned and executed. I guess the main joy for me was simply being able to present, with Yvonne about the joys of marriage.