Would you like to see what God is doing in Haiti, participate in a nightly praise and devotion time with the boys, and have a chance to serve others? Join one of our open mission teams, or if you have a group of five of more that would like to go, please contact us about setting up a trip.
If you would like more information about mission teams or would like an application, please contact Nancy Turner at [email protected].
We will be sponsoring the following Mission Trips for 2018:
February 23 - March 1
July 2 - July 12
August 1 - August 10
Anyone who has visited with the Love and Grace Ministry, knows that this just may be the happiest place on earth. Or at least, that's how I feel it is. My name is Emma Ryan and I have been to Haiti twice - in the summer of 2015 and again in the summer of 2016. Our team was in Haiti for 18 days, from July 25 to August 11. Some may think that this would be more than enough time to feel the warmth and love that God has placed on Haiti, however, it is only just a little dose that keeps us sane until we have the blessing of returning again.
Since I had been to Haiti before, I already knew the love I was about to experience. My heart was placed in Haiti during my first trip and it never left. I had been praying and praying and praying about this trip, because we had no clue whether or not we were going to be able to go on it. Our wonderful leader and director (Mom) of Love and Grace Ministries, Nancy Turner, had experienced some health issues earlier in the year. By the grace of God, we were able to join her in her journey back to Haiti, and visit & minister to not only to the amazing boys that reside in the Love and Grace Orphanage, but also the little children all over Haiti.
Our team visited two different churches for Vacation bible school ...
Pastor Nathan's church is in Galilee. We had been to Galilee before, and it was so wonderful to see that the same children who attended school there the year before, also attended VBS. These kids had the biggest smiles, and were so grateful that we were there to not only feed them, but also share with them the word of God. These children were phenomenal.
The church run by Pastor Augustine was not a new church, but it was new to us. We had never been to this VBS before, because the church had never had Americans come in & give a message. These children were so loving, and so eager to hear from us. Their singing and laughter reassured us that God's work was flowing through us, and we were doing everything we were supposed to.
We had the blessing of going to Galilee again, however, it wasn't for the children. 250 pairs of reading distance eye glasses were donated to Love and Grace, so we set up an eyeglass clinic. Many people came to the church, and each person received a pair of glasses. I had the pleasure of asking each person, "Ou esa byen?" meaning, "you understand well?". When they were not able to see the writing on the paper, their faces were overcome by sadness. They couldn't see the markings on a paper a foot away from their faces. When they were sent off to the next table, where they could try on and receive their glasses, it was a completely different atmosphere. Facial expressions changed drastically and smiles stretched across their faces. When you're in such an impoverished place like Haiti, it's the little things, like getting a pair of glasses, that truly make the biggest impact on people.
I remembered every turn we made on the way to the orphanage. When we turned left at the green wall and I saw that big blue gate slide open, I broke down again. Stepping off the van and into the loving kisses and warm hugs of each boy are the moments that I will never forget. I thought that I knew and loved each boy when I had left Haiti last year, but this year, they each became my best friend. I got to know each of the younger boys a little better, and I grew in each relationship with the older boys to the point in which we are unbreakable. These are the friendships that I know will last a life time here on earth, and eternally in Heaven as well.
Right off the plane, I smelled the smell of Haiti in the air. I knew that I was home. I was greeted by a few of the boys - Rony, Emson and Luckson. In my hometown of Hilton Head Island in SC, I work at a grocery store called Piggly Wiggly. As a Christmas present, I sent each of the boys a Piggly Wiggly t shirt (aren't they super adorable).
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: "God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble."
This past February, I had the privilege and honor of accompanying the PATAJE MUSIC team to the Love & Grace Boys Home. A more talented and unique team, I could not have hoped to join along with Nancy Brown and the L&G staff. Their music brought joy to my heart and to those of the children we visited at L&G and to the many schools we visited throughout Haiti. I am blessed to have a large, close family and love is aplenty. I’d been looking for an opportunity to go beyond my everyday existence and make a difference to my fellow citizens of the world. I have been able to travel quite a bit but this trip touched my heart and soul in a unique way. While traveling, I enjoy immersing myself into the everyday life of the people and places I visit. Not difficult to do at Love & Grace, I was welcomed with open arms …
I learned at Love & Grace that a HOME comes in many forms and I felt as at home in a foreign and unknown culture as I did in my own backyard in Maine. I left Love & Grace knowing that each boy was loved and taken care of in such beautiful ways – physically, educationally, spiritually. I doled out as many hugs and kisses as possible. I came to learn that I could not move mountains in a week but I was going to do whatever I could to make life a bit sweeter for the wonderful Haitian people – I came to learn that it was THEY who made my life sweeter with their faith, courage, hope and love. At almost 56 years old, I was reminded that human interaction is paramount to well-being. To be out of your comfort zone and to embrace all people – we all have stories to tell and that was never more apparent than in Haiti. A complex country of beauty and struggle and I have hope that each day will bring peace, calm and comfort to this wondrous land.
~ Lisa, February 2016