“So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem, the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.“ Luke 2:4-7
Hi! This week a couple of birth situations occurred that ended with different outcomes. The medical team who did a clinic the other week here at Coram Deo had a successful week of clinics. At the end of 6 clinics they ended up treating 1,500 people. Their last clinic day was held at a church/school in the Delmas 19 area. A woman visited the clinic and it was also the time for her baby to be born. The medical team assisted her through her delivery and a healthy baby girl was born!
Early Saturday morning Lukner called to say that someone had abandoned a baby inside Cite Jeremie, which is not far from Coram Deo. We rushed over there hoping to find a living baby but instead found a dead baby. Cite Jeremie is a densely populated area and there are narrow corridors leading to some of the houses. Some corridors are so narrow you have to walk sideways through them. The baby was in one of these corridors. This story is a sad one with a bad ending. The mother was the mistress of a married man. She became pregnant and didn’t want anyone to know. She was a large woman and was able to hide her pregnancy from some people but others living around her suspected that she was pregnant. They would say that she looked pregnant and she would get angry and deny it. The people figured that one day this fact couldn’t be hidden. Late Friday evening her labor began and when the time came for the baby to be born she left her home and went nearby to an area that was quieter. Nobody was with her. She delivered her baby by herself and immediately smothered him with cloths. She then wrapped him in cloths and put him inside a plastic bag. Morning came and she left with the plastic bag to dispose of her baby. One of Lukner’s relatives saw her (he was one of the people who had thought she was pregnant) walking with the bag and he went up to her and ripped open the bag. The baby was revealed along with the placenta and umbilical cord still attached. The people surrounded the mother and accused her of being a “Devil Mother” and police were called. The police came and brought the mother to the police station on Delmas 33. The baby was left on the ground. Later the police returned with a judge to pronounce the baby dead. The people were upset and coming from different sections of Cite Jeremie to see what had happened. The people near me told me to take a picture to show what happens sometimes in Haiti. Unfortunately this type of situation is a common occurrence here. This baby boy never got the opportunity to live. This gift of God to this mother was rejected by her, but this baby is now with the Lord in heaven. Pray that one day the practice of killing babies at birth stops here in Haiti.
This week we helped out Paul of Angel Missions with translating and getting blood from the Red Cross for a girl that he is helping get surgery. Marienne is a 14-year-old girl who has a badly broken femur. She is one of the students that was injured in the La Promesse School collapse a month ago. She had been laying in her hospital bed at General Hospital, not getting the surgery she needed to correct this fracture. The family couldn’t buy the metal plates and screws needed for this orthopedic surgery and the state hospital doesn’t have the resources to provide them for her. As a result, the only thing done for her was to put her leg in a cast as is. The family contacted Paul for assistance and he was able to contact an orthopedic surgeon who would operate on her for free. He was able to raise funds to pay for her hospital bed at a private hospital in Port-au-Prince. Thursday morning she had her surgery and is now recovering. Pray for Marienne and the other students still recovering from their injuries of this school collapse.
We visited the man from Jeremie who was one of the patients stuck in the emergency room during the hospital strike at General Hospital. He needed surgery as well to repair all 3 of his leg fractures but it never happened for the same reasons as Marienne. One evening he had a dream and in this dream the Lord was working on his leg. The next morning he woke up and remembered the dream he had. He noticed that he had no more pain in his leg. Since that day there has been no more pain. He is now making efforts to walk. This is an amazing thing if you look at how bad his fractures were. His upper and lower leg were both fractured and he has what is considered as a floating knee as a result. I took a picture of him sitting on the edge of his bed in the orthopedics department. You can see that he is able to partially bend his knee. Thank you for all your prayers for this man. One of the doctors asked him what church he went to.
The man in the bed next to him is the prisoner who was also stuck in the emergency room. He is still chained to the bed as he awaits medical care. He enjoys our visits as well. Please continue to keep both these men in prayer.
The plastic surgeries at Hopital La Paix, located on Delmas 33 begin on December 18th. Pray for traveling mercies for the medical team and for all those who will be receiving cleft lip, palette and other plastic surgeries. It will be great to see how the children’s faces will improve after surgery.
The first semester exam period went well here at Coram Deo and we will be issuing report cards on Friday to the students. We will plan a special day for the children for their last day of school before Christmas break. One of these students, Jameson Glezile will hopefully be receiving cleft palate surgery next week.
Today we got a nice surprise! The electric company came with a new transformer and hooked it up on the pole down the street to replace the broken one. 2 weeks waiting for a transformer is fast for Haiti. It can take as long as 3 months sometimes for transformers to get replaced. We also received a donation this week for food and it is good to have a stocked food depot. Another organization donated some peanut butter and the medical team gave us some medical supplies and medicines. We give the Lord thanks for these donations. In February we will be getting a mission team visiting Coram Deo. Please pray for their preparations.
That’s all the news for today. Have a good weekend!
Karen Bultje, Coram Deo