Monday, June 28, 2010


ACWR Sea Container

In a typical year, ACWR sends 3 sea containers of aid to Jamaica. One designated for CCCD, one for Westmoreland and Manchester, and one primarily for Falmouth (one hospital, an infirmary, a school, an orphanage and a couple communities).
A few weeks ago we distributed two containers to various areas in the parish of Trelawny. One was strictly hospital beds, 48 of them, that got distributed to the Falmouth Public Hospital and the Falmouth Infirmary. The other was rice, beans, soap, clothes, schools supplies, canned food, cooking oil, etc. These were distributed to the hospital, infirmary, Sherwood Content and Waldensia Primary school (hometown and primary school of Usain Bolt), and Granville Place of Safety (a home for girls).
As always, it was a blessing to be able to serve these people and to see the difference ACWR is making in lives, one bar of soap at a time. Thanks to all back in the States that make this a possibility, by your donations of time, effort, skill and financial resources.

Filling up the storage area of Mrs. Flash's house. She was Usain Bolt's principal and teacher when he was a kid...pretty fun to imagine the world's fastest man grew up eating rice and beans sent by ACWR.
Unloading the container at the dock.
Very funny woman named Mrs. Gardener. She is not easy to deal with, but once she lets you know who's boss, she actually is pretty sweet and funny. We had to convince her to let us give her the aid (thanks E, for the pictures and captions!)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


'Dudus' in custody - -

'Dudus' in custody - -

Monday, June 07, 2010


Whirlwind of a few weeks and a couple prayer requests

Saturday, May 22. School closed for Labor Day holiday, so I headed up to Mandeville. It worked out for me to give a ride to two friends, Tashi Bent and Nicola Foster, both past graduates of CCCD who now work for JAD (Jamaica Association for the Deaf) in Kingston. I was blessed with the opportunity to meet Nicola's mom and then spend a few hours hanging out at Tashi's with her family. Her younger brother Jordan, a current student at the Knockpatrick campus, was also home for the weekend and we had a lot of fun hanging out, chatting, looking at pictures, and I even learned how to make banana fritters. I also got to meet Tashi's father who is enduring terminal brain cancer. He is coherent but is a different person than he used to be. Please pray for Tashi's father and their family as they go through this trial of life.

Yummm, banana fritters!

Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday I enjoyed kicking back and soaking up some sun for the labor day holiday. Warren, Erin, Gunnar and I hung out in mobay for a mini-vacation. Wednesday we met Dr Buz (dentist) and family at the mobay airport and drove them back up to Knockpatrick campus. Thursday and friday i got to spend time with my knockpatrick friends and really enjoyed hanging out with the teen students that i've known for years. Its crazy to think that the little ones I first started meeting back in 2004 are now teenagers! A couple of the boys also taught me some dance moves, which although I am ridiculously bad, they still enjoy watching me try. It definitely gets them to laugh :)
Due to the uncertainty with Kingston, my team scheduled for May 29-June 5 in Kingston went to mobay instead. On the 29th then, I headed to mobay. We spend Sat-Thursday at the mobay campus. I thoroughly enjoyed getting the chance to spend quality time with the students and staff that I have gotten to know so well since spending a month there in 2006. The team had gone to Kingston for 3 straight years, so they enjoyed getting to know mobay but as many can testify, the first place you come to in a country really captures your heart. So, by the time thursday rolled around, everyone was excited to head to Kingston. With the violence being over, we felt confident it would again be a safe environment for a work team. Unfortunately, Peoria AC cancelled due to the concern over violence. Anyways, I too was excited to be back home in Kingston after being gone for nearly two weeks. I missed the kids and was excited to see them. BUT, once we did arrive, I realized I had missed them so much more. It's similar to when I go home. Once I'm home and with family and friends and in church singing hymns, that's when I realize how much I have really missed it. I'm thankful God has given me the gift (well, I consider it a gift, maybe its just a hard heart though) of not missing things/people too much until I am away from them and then see them again. Once I got off the bus with the team and the kids swarmed me with hugs and willing hands to carry my bags, then I realized how much I had missed them. and then I hung out with some of the teen girls and just chatted chatted chatted and it felt so right to be "home". However, I have really missed being home recently as my little brother graduated from Purdue and little sister graduated from high school. Those are events that were always important to me, and I wish I could be there to support them. BUT, God is good, all the time, no matter what and I can praise him for allowing me to experience not being there. It's not the first, nor the last time, that I will miss something back home in the states.

Rockdale Baptist, from Conyers, GA. Love them!
Matt receiving his Purdue diploma! Congratulations Yo :)
The whole fam! Dad always gets to be involved in our graduation processions and Katie threw on her cap n gown for the sake of pictures. Her graduation took place two weeks later.
Katie, I am SO proud of you!

Prayer request: one of our students suffered a tragedy this weekend. Her only brother, age 24, was murdered while riding his bicycle. She was very close with him and it has broken her heart. Her grieving process is hard for me to witness, as I have never lost someone so close to me. I don't know what it's like. But as I held her last night as she was sobbing and wailing, I shuttered at the thought of going through that. My heart breaks to see her in such pain, yet I pray that though her sorrow will last for the night, joy will come in the morning. She is a solid Christian and I believe a large source of her pain is from the fact that her brother never confessed or displayed faith in Jesus Christ. She understands the reality of this, and it is hard for her. Please pray for Semaj Barrett and her family as they grieve the loss of a son, a brother, and a father (he leaves two children).

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