Edward’s September Visit
When I came to Haiti for a visit back in June, a friend of Joel’s happened to be visiting at the same time. His name is Edward Smith, he is a Victim Relief Chaplain. Edward and I hit it off right away. He is part of the family, he has become like an uncle to me. I look to him for advice and friendship. As a VRM (Victim Relief Ministries) Chaplain, Edward has been in Haiti since January. He comes monthly now to work with various pastors and offer support where he can. It’s always nice to have Edward around. He is a wealth of knowledge and with his charismatic personality he seems to make any room brighter.
Edward has known my involvement with the Deaf community in Haiti since the beginning. He has seen me change and grow as the weeks pass. Together we went to the deaf camp to do a debriefing with a few people there. With me as the interpreter we wanted to see how it would work if we did a small group debriefing. We had a group of seven deaf adults who all had experienced the earthquake. Edward spent around two hours talking with them. He asked each their story of where they were during the earthquake, asked them about their experiences since the earthquake, and addressed each of the individually. He assured them that the things they were feeling and experiencing were normal for people who had suffered a traumatic experience as they had. I had been spending a lot of time down at the camp for about four weeks now; it was an emotional day for me. The people were thankful for Edward talking to them and asked when he would be returning. I am thankful for Edward who took the time to meet with them. I am blessed to have a friend who cares so deeply for others.
On Saturday I went with Edward and Pastor Brandon Jordan who is a good friend and has been in Haiti for five years. He and his Wife, Nikki, run the guest house for GLA (God’s Littlest Angels). The three of us went to Carrefour where Edward was speaking at a meeting of Pastors about Victim Relief counseling so they can better assist with their congregation. Pastor John Heder is another Pastor whom Edward met after he came to Haiti in January. Pastor Heder happens to also run a school for the deaf of ten students. The school was severely damaged by the earthquake, but he hopes to have it running again when school starts in September. It was a two story building, the second story is no longer.