October 11, 2013
Yesterday while walking through the market the question that people kept asking in Creole was, “Why are those white girls walking with the prostitutes?”
Earlier that morning Caitlin asked if I wanted to come with her to the brothel after lunch. I reluctantly said yes. I was slightly hoping that my stomach ache would get worse and I wouldn’t feel up to going, especially with this little heat and humidity wave we’ve been experiencing. The fall does not bring a breeze on most days unless there is a downpour coming. My stomach ache did get worse but I felt as though there was a reason in going. Caitlin just said we were meeting the girls at the brothel.
I honestly couldn’t remember how far or close the brothel was. I haven’t been since returning to Haiti and the last time I went was last summer when I preached at the brothel and the team led worship. It was a powerful experience, but definitely overwhelming.
We set out towards the brothel and made it there in a quicker time then I remember it taking previously. It was still a bit overwhelming and intimidating as two men gave us a creepy vibe and one man stepped in front of us and stared us down, yet we confidently (hope and safety in trusting Jesus) walked around him and continued on the path.
We arrived at the brothel and were greeted by some of the women’s children. They are so cute. The women who were there greeted us and then took us in to see Junitha and her baby Erika. Junitha is one of the brothel girls who had her baby during my first week in Haiti and we got to name her daughter, Erika Rachel. We met with them and said hello and made sure that she and the baby were doing well. I will have to post photos and Junitha’s story later.
We then began to leave the brothel with some of the girls and headed towards the market. As we journeyed we stopped at this little house almost around the corner from the brothel. It was a home the girls had found to rent that they wanted to show Caitlin. Caitlin liked what she saw but wanted to negotiate with the owner and see the inside. We walked through the market and then to the owners house. He walked with us back to the house and opened. It was so nice compared to the brothel. It has three bedrooms, a little patio space out front and even a small back area like an alley way where they could cook and on the other side put a bathroom area. We loved it. Caitlin negotiated a price and paid the landlord a year’s worth of rent. It was around $200 American for an entire year’s rent. He said he would draw up papers.
The girls began singing and dancing and rejoicing. It was amazing. I was blessed to be there- to see and experience their joy… but to see the redemption and even rescue taking place. I had Caitlin’s phone and was able to capture a few photos and video.
How good is God? So so good.
Three of the girls: Natacha, Nadege, Medilia can now move out of the brothel and into the home. It will provide a safe place for them and for their children.
I love the work that Melonnie, Ashley and Caitlin do with Redeeming Gifts.
|Natacha: In Front of Her New Home|
What is that? It is a ministry they started with the brothel girls. Twice a week the girls come for bible study and to make jewelry. The girls get paid every other week for the jewelry that they make and we sell it to visitors/teams that come to Haiti and to those in the states. They have had a few churches partner with them and host jewelry parties where they sell the jewelry. They also started a saving account system here at the mission for the girls. Each week the girls not only tithe, but they put away 10 dollars into an envelope as their savings account. This allows for them to save and build for their future. This allows them to make payment on their rent and teach them accountability with their finances but also teach them budgeting. It’s a marvelous thing.
|Some of the beautiful girls!|
Thinking back now on yesterday- I think of that stomach ache wanting to prevent me from going and it reminded me of last year when I went to the brothel. I had such intense pains in my stomach that I almost didn’t want to preach but I did it anyways and God was brought so much glory and praise there in that brothel as I preached and we sang worship. I believe it was spiritual attack- something trying to stop me being a part of what would take place, something that would allow the fear of the unknown, exhaustion of the possible walk, or fear of connecting with the girls. But I am glad I ignored that stomach ache and went with that still small voice and nudge of the Holy Spirit because He provided. As we were standing in the new home, one of the girls Gerline asked about me. She said that she remember me but didn’t know why. Caitlin told her that I was now living and working at the mission, that I delivered a message at the brothel last summer. She remembered me from last year and she was also the same girl who ran and hugged Caitlin and I during all the singing and dancing.
I know not every stomach ache is a nudge from God, most often times it is just part of normal life in Haiti. I am glad that as I sit here and type, still with a stomach ache much worse than yesterday that I know I got to be a part of NWHCM and more so, God’s Rescue, Restore, and Redeem. I am thankful I got to share this story with you. Thankful God uses those white girls for His Purpose!
If you would like the purchase any jewelry, please let me know. I would be more than willing to bring it back to you once I return to the states.