A story that put a face to it all…
Yesterday we had the privilege of joining the national director Terry Snow on a trip to Gonaives, a city two hours north of St. Marc. We were here to scout out land and look for the possibilities of setting up communities here for the refugees. On the bumpy, crazy ride up (Terry being a crazier driver than all the Haitians in my opinion.. After all, he is from Texas…) I hear that we are also going up there to meet the YWAM staff who lost his wife in the earth quake and survived with his little four year-old girl. We got to sit down with him and he started to tell us the story of how he lost his wife and him and his daughter’s miraculous escape from the rubbles…
Illioney was upstairs on the second floor of their house in Port Au Prince one seemingly normal afternoon together with his daughter, Abigail. They were praising God, singing the song ” I’m here to meet with you, come and meet with me” in their home office as his daughter wanted to go to the living room and watch TV with her daddy. His wife was downstairs doing laundry and some other daily chores. Illioney did not want to watch TV with his daughter, but after her pleading him to spend time with her, he sat down to watch TV. After only a few minutes, they realized something was happening as everything around started shaking. Illioney realized very quickly that it was an earth- quake. He acted quickly, picked up his little daughter and that is all he had time for as the walls started caving in just a couple of seconds later. One small pole kept the rubbles from falling on them and with a cut in his head and bug wounds on his feet, he managed to climb out as he realized that his wife was on the first floor. He started shouting for her, getting no answer and no one wanted to help him dig because of the shock and being too scared for aftershocks… Three days later he found his wife dead underneath the rubbles. He managed to buy something looking like a chest and buried her close to their devastated home. Their building is believed to have had nine people in it, Illioney and his daughter being the only survivors…
Abigail kept asking for weeks when her mom would come back and as Illioney would tell his daughter that her mommy is with Jesus, she would say that she also wanted to die so that she could be with her mom and with Jesus…
As I look at and listen to this grieving man, I realize I am unable to comprehend and fathom what he is going through, but that I am able to put a face to what has happened to this nation… Seeing the rubbles is one thing but to hear from one of our own people, as YWAMers does something to you.
Little Abigail is now suffering from pneumonia and in order for Ellioney to get her medical care, he had to sell his car. They are currently living with family up in Gonaives. Please keep them in your prayers and in your hearts!
From Haiti with Hope, Ruthie
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