Saturday, June 1, 2013

To Fondwa Went Dave and Jamalyn

Last night, we spent an evening celebrating Dave and Jamalyn's ten years of ministry in Haiti. And what an exciting ten years it has been!
I put together a little slide show for the party, and it was fun to look back on the photos of their journey. Here they are in Haiti ten years ago.
Dave and Jamalyn went to Fondwa
To Fondwa went Dave and Jamalyn
They were newlyweds
Ten years ago
See how their love has grown. 
And grown!

(A little ditty sung to the tune of Father Abraham. More verses to come.)

And here they are last night at the celebration.
We even had a very special visitor join us for the party. Sister Simone came all the way from Fondwa via a night spent in the Dallas airport due to weather-related flight delays. Quite an experience for someone who speaks very little English and doesn't carry an American cell phone. She made it though, and was still smiling to be with her David and Jamalyn.
Dave and Jamalyn met many friends
Sisters Simone, Carmelle, and Father Joe
They learned to speak Kreyol
Ten years ago
See how their love has grown.
And grown! New friends!

These are the women who helped with the party, although I believe I was an accidental member of the committee. :)
Table decorations included little Haitian flags.
The party also served as a fundraiser for some special projects in Fondwa. We are hoping that enough money will be raised to start a sustainable farm for the orphanage. Guests at the party were given the opportunity to purchase a pig, goat, or cow to help meet this goal. Want to buy a goat?
Dave and Jamalyn, they loved the kids
And all the kids loved Dave and Jamalyn
They taught them arts and crafts
And English too
See how their love has grown.
And grown! New friends! The kids!

We also hope to raise money to build a house for a family that does not have one. There were some handmade Haitian items for sale as well.
These beautiful carvings are made by some of our friends in Fondwa. They look great hung on the wall, or could be used in the center of a table.
Jennifer and Bryan have theirs hanging on the wall with their wedding photos.

Sister Simone made Kremas for the party. As the sign says, 'it is a sweet, creamy alcoholic beverage native to Haiti.' It is similar in consistency to a milkshake, and is served during the holidays or on special occasions. Yum! (I even got to bring the leftovers home with me. Cheers!)
Our family was well-represented at the party. 
Jen, who went on the trip with us in November, served as MC for the program part of the evening. Here, she is thanking folks for coming, and sharing ways for them to support the ministry. A cow would make a great gift for Father's Day!
Jamalyn's mom, Lois, wanted to add a little humor to the evening (shocking, I know), and did a little roast to her daughter. You may remember that Jamalyn gets in all sorts of predicaments in Haiti... hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. Lois used Jessica to model the necessary survival items for a trip with Jamalyn. It included a forehead reflector, rope, toilet paper,
and a little tiny bottle of Jack Daniels. To keep everyone calm.
Many friends of theirs went to Fondwa
They went in teams with Dave and Jamalyn
Now all those friends of theirs
Love Haiti too
See how their love has grown!
And grown! New friends! The kids! Work teams!
Here she is with a 'goat jaw bone' in case you need to make soup. Oh Lois!
Not a hurricane or quake of earth
Could crush the hearts of Dave and Jamalyn
Their hope and faith in God
Secure and strong
See how their love has grown.
And grown! New friends! The kids! Work teams! Strong faith!

The crowd enjoyed the entertainment.
As did Sister Simone. She may not have been able to understand everything that was said, but she could feel the celebration and love in the room.
The little ditty, mentioned above (remember, the tune of Father Abraham), was performed by a cooperative group of volunteers, including Jennifer, Jonathan, and Lois. The others in the group, Lisa, Deb, Holly, and Jen, were the coordinators of the event.
I, being the author and director, got to sit on the floor and hold the cue cards. :)
And for all of us who love Fondwa
Because of our friends Dave and Jamalyn
We look forward to
The next ten years
See how their love has grown.
And grown! New friends! The kids! Work teams! Strong faith! Ten years! AMEN!
After the silliness, Jessica gave a heartfelt toast to Dave and Jamalyn and the lives they have touched, the impact they have had, and the future of their work in Haiti. "To changing lives!"

Dave and Jamalyn, shy though they are :), had an opportunity to respond with thanks of their own.
Dave talked about going to Haiti together as newlyweds, never dreaming it would last ten years.
The commitment to Haiti, that is. Not their marriage. :)
He did have to clarify that one. Oh David!
And they wrapped it up by thanking everyone who has had a part in contributing to their home in Haiti. God has truly blessed their ministry, connecting each of their 'homes' along their journey: Duke -> Haiti  -> Milroy -> Greensburg -> St. Luke's.
They are gifted at making everyone they meet a part of their family, and that family continues to grow and connect and give and love.
Just like Dave and Jamalyn. AMEN!

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