(Post January 2012) This is the story of a baby boy named “Rudy” who captured the hearts of our Simply Love Haiti team. We were all so excited for clinic day at Haiti Home of Hope (HHH). We heard there would be about 60 people that would walk over 15 miles to receive care, food, and baby formula. Almost all the babies on the milk program are there because their moms have died. These babies would most likely die without this lifesaving formula. We also work with nursing moms who are having a hard time nursing. We help the moms with vitamins and food, to improve their nutrition, so they can nurse well. I want to thank those of you who donated formula- Tymm Hoffman’s ministry Brighton Their World. We packed their storage room full of life-saving formula! We were beyond surprised when over 120 people arrived (maybe they heard about 16 crazy Americans being there) and we had the opportunity to love, feed, care, sing, and share the gospel during the 6+ hours in the outdoor waiting room. I want to shout out a special thanks to the Campbell family, missionaries who live and love in Pignon, the past 8 years dedicated to making a difference to the unreached people groups in Haiti. I was simply amazed watching this family in action and fell deeply in love with all 38 of their children!! I want to be YOU when I grow up, Jennifer!
We had invited several people the day before on our home visits, including a witch doctor named Luckner. This poor man had no idea what he was walking into, but we had an incredible time sharing and praying with him during clinic day. Pignon, Haiti is located 100 miles from Port-au-Prince up in the mountains. It’s a rural, very poor area that desperately needs our help and care. We met many new mothers and caretakers in the milk day program that literally are keeping their babies alive with the donated formula. They were overjoyed and so grateful that we were there helping. One of my favorite memories was when team members, Amanda and Becky started singing. Our team shared a few songs, and then we asked it THEY would sing to us. There were many women who came forward and gave us their gift of song. One in particular was a blind women who had a voice like an angel. We were so touched and blessed with our impromptu sing-a-long.
One of the mothers had a challenging history with HHH. She was abusive to her children and left three years ago (illegally) to live in the Dominican Republic. She came back on clinic day with baby Rudy. He was 2 months old, but weighed barely 5 pounds. Of course, I was immediately back in time holding my baby Zoie with memories flooding in my heart. However, this baby boy was being deliberately starved by his birthmother. Jennifer Campbell rushed the baby inside the clinic and we immediately started giving him urgent care. He was so sick and weak, he couldn’t suck the bottle, so we had to put a NG tube down his nose into his little tummy. I started bawling, because I had to do this with my own premature daughter, Hannah and the emotions overwhelmed my heart! Jennifer requested from Rudy’s mother the choice to allow us to nurse him, literally back to life. She agreed and left HHH for several days. We nursed Rudy around the clock 24/7 and slowly he started growing stronger. There are no words to describe what our team felt caring for Rudy. He was truly our miracle boy. There are a lot of details I won’t share in this story, but I wanted to update you (Monday 2/6) Rudy’s parents showed up this morning and we all went down to Cap Haitian. The parents denied that he tested positive for hiv, so a doctor did another test, which came back positive. The father is having a hard time with this news, and what it means to him. He changed his mind about leaving Rudy in the Cap Haitian orphanage, and decided to take him back to the Dominican and seek medical care there. So we gave them money for transportation, and took them to the bus station. God is still in control of this situation. We know that Rudy’s father loves him very much, and wants to be with him. Because of this, I believe he will find the medical treatment he needs. Please continue to pray for this family. Jennifer. (photo- Parents are pictured below with Rudy.)
We are grateful for the time we had loving him, feeding him, giving him his first bubble bath, and rocking him as we fed him each hour, every day. My dear friend, Kari Hamilton ended up staying an extra week to help the Campbell family take care of him. Baby Rudy has 21 new adopted aunts, uncles, and a mama Kari in his life watching over him and loving him and praying for him.
(Baby Rudy 2 days after we fed him every hour 24/7)
My personal challenge dealing with Rudy’s mother was not judging her, but having compassion. I had to keep saying 1 Cor. 13:13 over and over in my heart. It was very difficult and several times during our stay, I wanted to judge her angrily with my words and actions for hurting Rudy. God (and my team) kept reminding me that God has a special plan for Rudy and despite the abuse he had to endure from his mother, he was in the care and hands of our heavenly father. I had the opportunity to pray and talk to mom with the help of Pastor Clebert … sharing the gospel and also my own struggles and mistakes as a mom. I had a heart to heart talk with her and shared about Zoie’s adoption and Hannah’s miracle story. God used MY pain to hopefully encourage this young mother. Please pray for baby Rudy and his parents…. we will keep you updated on his progress.
Life is pitiful, death so familiar, suffering and pain so common, yet I would not be anywhere else. Do not wish me out of this or in any way seek to get me out, for I will not be got out while this trial is on. These are my people, God has given them to me, and I will live or die for Him and His glory. – Gladys Aylward (Live-Dead)