Monday, October 24, 2011

Touched by a "Haitian" Angel

We have our own little welcoming committee here in Hait
i in the form of an elderly Haitian woman who I affectionately
refer to as "Auntie." I first met her in July at a charasmatic,
outdoor church service that I went to with our interpreter Fanfan.
She immediately captured our hearts as she joyfully shuffled
over to our location with a twinkle in her eye and a spring in
her step to individually greet each one of us. In fact, the woman

deeply touched one of our team members in particular ...
our team leader Tom Gacek.
This week, when we arrived at church, I knew that Tom would
be looking for his little angel. We took our seats and waited
patiently for our welcome to begin. The music had started
and suddenly, I noticed that Tom was gone. I glanced around
and spotted him in the row that we had sat in during our July trip ...
I knew that he was hoping she would see him.
Finally, disappointed, Tom returned to his seat with the rest
of our team members.

I quietly said a quick prayer asking that little Auntie
reveal herself.
When I opened my eyes, there she was ... doing a quick little jig
down the aisle of the church heading straight for Tom.
My heart immediately fluttered and was filled with excitement
and warmth since I knew Tom would be just thrilled to see
her once again. Then, after greeting Tom, to my amazement
she individually greeted each one of us just like she had done in July.
She wanted to make sure that the visitors to her church felt at home.

Tom gave her a piece of gum as she continued dancing
down the aisles, waving her hands in the air in worship.
Shortly thereafter, she reappeared with a gift for each one of us ...
pieces of candy.
She sweetly placed a piece in our hands as she looked us in
the eyes.
Then, she found a seat in front of Tom where she sat quietly alone.
Well ... Tom would have none of that ... he did not want her sitting
alone so he politely escorted her over to an empty seat
right next to me.

As the music continued, she placed her hand on my shoulder
and began to pray silently over me. I couldn't believe the tender,
loving care she showed by doing this act for a total stranger!
When she was finished with me, she repeated this practice
with several of my other team members. We were all so
touched by her grace and eloquence. She was so precious
and made us all smile. We were the outsiders at this church,
but felt completely at ease.

So ... if you ever come to Haiti, don't be surprised
by the warm welcome you will receive, especially
from a little elderly woman at the Morning Star Christian
Academy in Port-au-Prince. Just like us,
you will be touched by this angel.

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