May 28, 2009

Ayiti:Bon Samaritan

Not too far from MOH is an orphanage known as Bon Samaritan, or Good Samaritan, in the village of Cabaret. The orphanage was destroyed in the hurricanes last year, but all 120 kids survived miraculously. They now live in an old disco/night club in Cabaret. The kids there learned my name instantly, and whenever I go they call out "Sa-ah!" and I do my best to speak with them a little.

It was the first place in Haiti that really brought me to tears. I am so torn up over the life of the kids here - but I was reminded by someone here that it is better to live there than on the streets, like the little boy I met in the market in Cabaret with no parents, living off what he gets from begging.

And yet the kids here run happily around the dance floor, going to school on the floor with old chalkboards and little chairs and benches for the various grades. The littlest ones who are too young for school just sit on the edge, waiting patiently. The kids here are so well-behaved because they have to be.

The whole situation makes the joy on the faces of the kids is almost too much to handle. While it could be comforting to see the children so joyful when you are there, it makes leaving even worse. I can go and cuddle different kids for a few hours, but eventually I have to leave, and I have left both times with the same little girl in tears, so desperately wanting someone to cuddle her a little longer.

When the world is so broken, and you see so much need everywhere you go, how do you begin to process? And what on earth can I do?


  1. Please bring that little girl back with you. I want to have her in our family. love you.

  2. Oh my goodness - she is BEAUTIFUL. And so are your words. And so is your heart. And your face, too (not your big toe, though).

  3. ok, so? i just was typing a comment, and then the page finished loading and it deleted my entire comment. screw you, blogspot!

    but what i was saying was, have you ever considered single motherhood as a life ambition? i am only half kidding.

    you are way cooler than me. wish you were here tonight, but glad you are where you are at.

  4. I lived in Zambia for a year (have been back in the States 6 months) and that last line you wrote came out of my mouth over and over again while living in beautiful Southern Africa. So much joy in life-- so much pain in life-- and so very hard to know what to do in the midst. How to make sense of all the injustice. And yet we labor on, one day at a time. One relationship at a time and pray that God utterly transform our meager contributions into a life that is more just and beautiful for all people. Blessings upon you my sister!

  5. It's such an invitation into the heart of Jesus -- to see a bit more of what He sees and then to ask to feel what He feels... Praying He meets you in the most special of ways and you know His heart more when you leave than you did when you got there.

    Cuddle that little girl for me some too. :)