Thursday, January 12, 2012


There are a few blogs written by American missionaries who were here for the earthquake. I haven't been able to keep up with them very well, especially recently, but they are worth reading. (Fortunately one can always catch up.) I'd like to share the links for today's posts, given that it's the second anniversary of the earthquake.  I'll also include excerpts. Perhaps you would like to follow their blogs too.

Ben and Katie in Haiti: Love Endures Forever: There are countless ways to look at 12 January. Many news outlets are doing the whole "Haiti is still a mess" news story (everyone of those journos needs to choke on their pen). You could be more hopeful and talk about all the progress that has been made (yes, there is REAL progress here). Some will spend the day mourning, still grieving the loss of their loved ones; to those- my heart breaks for you.

I want to take this 12 January and the ones that follow and do three things:

First, I am so thankful that I am alive. Fate, chance, sound construction, soil conditions, timing, God's will- I have no idea why I am alive when so many others are not. I want to dwell on the simple, often-taken-for-granted-fact that I am alive and everything reminds me of it: my hunger, my thirst, my sweat, my joy, my sadness. I am alive. A wise woman once began a speech by asking: what will you do with your one wild and precious life? I want to make mine count. I am thankful that my best friend and partner-in-crime- Katie is alive with me. Many people lost their spouse and I do not think I could do much without her...

That was Ben. He and his wife, both American teachers, had been in Haiti for less than two weeks when the earthquake hit.  They stayed.

Here is the previous post, by Katie:

On January 12, 2010, my life changed forever when one out of every 11 people living in my city died in a massive earthquake. During the first few days, I felt compelled to write down everything on scraps of paper. I re-discovered the scraps recently and will share them now for the first time.

I'm copying exactly as I wrote it, with red pen on the back of an already-used piece of notebook paper, except for notes I added in brackets to make it clearer for you. I also changed the names of the three children, for privacy.

The Earthquake
Tues Jan 12, 5 pm

Day of: taught about earthquakes in last period geography, went to Eagle [grocery store] for laundry deterg, didn't get anything else really, home, pop a can of tom. juice, thinking toward dinner/homework. starts- like a truck Ben jumps up, to stairwell. sit top step, stare @ each other. grabs me, outside w/ a few things- no pport, no US phone. I'm afraid of streets. Go next door to Bill, a family from the DR just arrived. stand outside- yelling & running then- ravine people. dead kid, bloody kid, old lady B takes off. Dorothy crying, watching like idiots. B return. Go in our house, get US phone, water, flash, lantern, hand sani., paper towels, care for little boy, family member dead, he's alone, Found "brother's friend" & some lady, treating him, head bleeding- concerned about blood (HIV). Then notice hand- bad to fatty tissue. Steve starts knocking next door, came to check. Says headed back to school, we follow, run. Walls down, Jerusalem School ok. 50 kids @ school; teachers. Still light, kids joke- studied earthquakes in class today...
Here's another blog I like: 
I posted the link to the right some time ago.  Ruth hasn't written much today, but she has written some, and she has linked to her post from that day.  The post right below this link is also useful: it's a list of links to articles about today's anniversary.
She explains:  In the six months I spent in the States after the quake, I read everything anyone in the world wrote about Haiti and posted on the internet. But now, I protect myself more; I don't read nearly as much news as I used to, whether about Haiti or elsewhere in the world.
And finally,
No other time in our lives is as vividly ingrained in our memories as the day and the days following the earthquake.
We saw the very best and the very worst of humanity in those days. We felt the power of Christ in us. We saw that power exhibited in others. We witnessed crushing despair and miraculous provision.
That one minute on a Tuesday afternoon in January 2010 not only cut many lives short, but it drastically changed day to day life and the entire landscape of Haiti.

They recount a conversation with someone recently:
We talked more as Dr. Jen and Beth sewed/repaired Kerline after the birth. I asked Kerline's mother if she lost anyone she loved in the earthquake? She said, "Yes, I lost my brother and sister-in-law. They were trapped alive in a building and we could hear them calling us but we couldn't get to them." She later shared that their bodies were never recovered.

She said "We knew where they were but we couldn't reach them."

That one story is multiplied by thousands (and thousands).

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