Privilege and the Caribbean Supermarket

On the last day of a medical team trip to Mountain Top Ministries in Haiti we had the privilege of visiting a school they built near the village of Dumay.  The school itself stood out with its modern structure and brightly colored paint.  Yet it sits on the edge of a large industrial gravel pit with a serious dust problem back in the village.  Just a foot out the door of the van we were greeted by a swarm of preschoolers.  Want to feel like a rock star, come for a visit.  If only I was this popular in high school.  

The work being done here is nothing short of amazing.  These people have zero creature comforts, little to eat and numerous other problems, yet hope and joy was abundant.  Mountain Top Ministries is doing a serious good work here.

After a good 30 minutes of hugging kids we finally were freed up as the kids returned to class.  We then got the tour of the complete facility.  Several co-workers from the ISU Library, and members from our church collected some funds in advance for the library they recently finished here.  Another great privilege was meeting the two girls my sister Sandy sponsors.  You may not always get to see the investment you make here, but believe me, it feels really good to see it.

Before reloading into the van we all felt a sense of encouragement.  Just driving here had just the opposite effect so all was well with my soul as we headed back toward the mission house.

We stopped for lunch at the Caribbean Supermarket SA in Petionville.  In the states this would be nice small grocery store with a particularly good bakery.  In Haiti this is an international place of prestige.  Multiple armed guards outside made this perfectly clear.  Pizza, pastries and great food is abundant.

You could easily see we were among the privileged. Well, in the way of resources since most Haitian's couldn't afford it.  It was a nice lunch, and I appreciated it, but coming from where we were just a few miles back it seemed a bit awkward.  Not that I didn't devour the pizza put before me.

If you live in the U.S. with any sort of reasonable salary you would be among the privileged here.  Yet joy and a positive outlook is optional.  Maybe, just maybe, on the joy and hope scale those kids in the dust of Dumay have one up on us.
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