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The Next Wave - 400 tons of emergency supplies and equipment arrives in Haiti
Samaritan's Purse ^ | January 30, 2010

Posted on 01/31/2010 7:45:28 AM PST by greyfoxx39

January 30, 2010
A barge carrying 400 tons (800,000 pounds) of Samaritan’s Purse emergency relief supplies arrived in Haiti on Friday. An assortment of heavy equipment was also on board, including a bulldozer, dump trucks, skid loaders, and flatbed trucks to help with debris removal, access clearing, hauling, and other difficult tasks.

“One of the first things I want to do is help rebuild secure perimeters around churches to help them be established as distribution points for the community,” said Ken Isaacs, the vice president of projects for Samaritan’s Purse. “One of the first jobs we’ll tackle with the excavator is to help the church in Cite Soleil put their wall back up.”

The Christian Church of the Cities in Cite Soleil was the distribution point for 1,000 family relief packs on Friday. Troops with the 82nd Airborne provided security for the distribution and at the dock when the barge arrived. They also helped drive vehicles back to the Samaritan’s Purse base on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince.

“I haven’t seen a convoy like this since Iraq,” said Specialist Alex Russell, who was deployed to Iraq for 18 months before coming to Haiti. “That’s a lot of equipment.”

Samaritan’s Purse expects to continue relief efforts in Haiti for at least two years.

“We want to work closely with the military community,” Isaacs said. “We’ve received tremendous assistance from the 82nd Airborne. They’re familiar with the critical needs in their sector and we want to work with them to address those needs.”

Samaritan’s Purse workers are compiling a growing list of removal projects at churches, hospitals, schools, and other facilities that serve the community.

“We’re going to do what we can and we’re going to do it in the name of Christ,” Isaacs said. “I believe God is working. I see His hand everywhere."
Samaritan's Purse is a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization providing spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan's Purse has helped meet needs of people who are victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease, and famine with the purpose of sharing God's love through His Son, Jesus Christ.

The organization serves the Church worldwide to promote the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Franklin Graham has devoted his life to meeting the needs of people around the world and proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The eldest son of Billy and Ruth Bell Graham, he serves as President and CEO of Samaritan's Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

TOPICS: Current Events; Ecumenism; Evangelical Christian; General Discusssion
KEYWORDS: aid; christian; earthquake; evangelical; haiti; haitirelief; humanitarianrelief; samaritanspurse
David Torres is the leader of our disaster relief team that deployed within hours of the devastating earthquake in Haiti.

Of my many deployments with Samaritan's Purse around the world, this has been one of the most challenging.

David Torres helps unload supplies at the airport
In most disaster situations we are able to use local means to get the job done: local vehicles, phones, supplies, etc. When we arrived in Port-au-Prince, the entire city—Haiti’s major center of commerce, politics, and communication—lay in rubble before us.

It was even difficult to get our chartered plane into the airport because of the chaos below. We eventually were able to descend through the dust enshrouding the city. The runway was the only operational piece of the airport. There was no customs, immigration, or personnel on the tarmac. It was like landing in an abandoned airfield.

But the biggest challenges lay ahead.

From the very beginning I knew things would not happen as quickly as I had hoped. Transportation and communication were completely lacking, so we didn't have the means to get supplies out to the areas needed. We gathered as a team in prayer because this was way beyond our capabilities, both individually and corporately.

It was at that time we were reminded that despite the overwhelming challenges and immense needs, God has promised that He would go before us and He would make things happen.

When Christ sent out the disciples, they must have felt the same way we did. They were given a mission and told to take no food or water, to leave their former lives and families, and go and do His work. I guess everyone on the Samaritan's Purse team could relate to that, but the hard part to swallow was in Mathew 10:8—the part where they were also to “raise the dead, cast out demons.”

Doing without supplies was easy, but doing miracles—the really big things—was way out of our league. It was that realization that changed everything for us. We knew that if anything was going to happen in Haiti through Samaritan's Purse, we would have to do it in His strength. We had to get in God's league.

From then on it started to change. Things … just happened! Things just worked out. Connections were made, doors were opened, supplies got to hurting people.

We felt God's hand as I’ve never felt it before in any response. It was unmistakable! It was firm! It was unequivocal!

People on the team just started moving in one direction despite our lack of communication equipment. The Holy Spirit was speaking to people independently who would then arrive at the same place, at the same time, without any phone or radio communication. Supplies almost literally landed in our laps, followed shortly by a pastor who needed those exact supplies!

It was as if everything was being orchestrated by a divine conductor. The artist was painting the masterpiece, and the brush knew nothing of what was going on. It was as if His perfect will was being carried out right before our eyes, and our talents, skills, and resources were incidental to what He wanted to accomplish.

For many days we rested in this divine orchestration. At night when we came together to wrap up the day, we would rejoice as each team member said how firmly we could feel His direction in every step we took.

It was a great feeling! But we know why this happened. This was in no small part due to the constant and focused prayer we know was coming from people who were all following our progress, from headquarters to small churches that had invested in us.

We were told that people were praying like never before. We were told that donations were coming in like never before.

Despite what may be said about the people of Haiti, it has become unmistakably apparent to us on the ground that we have a God of Mercy; a God of second and third and fourth chances. We have a God who wants to redeem His creation and bring them to Him, no matter how far any person, people, or nation strays.

Many have given up hope for this little country because despite the tremendous amounts of money, effort, and resources that are pouring in, Haiti just doesn't seem to get any better. There are even whispers that Port-au-Prince should be abandoned. Almost 200,000 Haitians have already loaded on buses and left.

The rational mind might be able to justify throwing its hands up in defeat saying, “Yes, nothing here is salvageable.” But not our God, for we are assured that His love is perfect and cannot be diminished or overwhelmed.

His love is not in our league, and we can rest in this.

1 posted on 01/31/2010 7:45:28 AM PST by greyfoxx39
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To: colorcountry; Colofornian; Elsie; FastCoyote; svcw; Zakeet; SkyPilot; rightazrain; ...


2 posted on 01/31/2010 7:48:27 AM PST by greyfoxx39 (Carville "Part of the problem is that Mr Obama was refreshingly naive in believing his own rhetoric")
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To: greyfoxx39

I love that there is a min of a two year relief effort scheduled. Many groups are going but not at this level and their commitment seems to be a shorter term.

3 posted on 01/31/2010 7:53:17 AM PST by svcw (Ellie and Mark come out come out where ever you are.....)
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To: greyfoxx39
Two years!? That is a huge commitment.

Seems appropriate. It would take at least that long to clean the place up or many places and rebuild homes and infrastructure so these people can get on with their lives.

In the meantime they will suffer mightily but maybe a better things will come of it.

Hopefully, we can bring them into modernity. I can tell from traveling in the Caribbean and the Virgin Islands the ports look well enough. But being adventurous and hating ports, as they are daytime Disney's, I usually go very deep into the city or country so I can interact with the “real people and culture”.

Fun but very different from the port conditions and abject poverty abounds. I have always found the nicest people outside the ports or even tourist areas of any city in the world.

That is where you see the real people who are representative of the country culture.

4 posted on 01/31/2010 8:55:57 AM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously... You'll never live through it.)
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