But this morning classes were put on hold all the same and we gathered in the chapel instead, no ties, no shiny shoes.
As if Leme needed a day set apart to remember his father, buried under the hotel where he worked to provide for Leme and his mother and sister...As if he doesn't remember every day.
As if Rose, moaning and rocking her way through chapel yesterday, needed a day set apart to remember her daughter, buried alive and never found, all mama's phone calls unanswered. forever.
200,000 people in one day, the earthquake took. I'll never be abel to wrap my mind around that. The only way you realize how many people that is is by the fact that every single person you meet lost someone. Everyone in Haiti lost someone that day. They remember.
Sandra stood up this morning and declared, as she does each January 12th, "I praise God, because six years ago I was sitting in class with fifty other men and women, and that evening, only two of us were alive. Only me and my friend sitting next to me. He saved my life, I remember today, I thank Him."
Phida stood up and shared her bizarre dream of an earthquake greater still to come, His return, and the urgent message, "We must be going out and doing all that we can to make sure that EVERYONE has heard the Gospel, make Him known in every place."
Leme didn't stand at all. He didn't say anything. But public tears are so so very rare in Haiti, and his utterly undo my heart.
Belony, ever the pastor in every way, read the comfort of the Truth, the comfort only the Truth can give. Shared the Hope of our Savior, the Hope only our Father can give.
He reminded us that there is a place alongside the Father, a glorious place of no tears and no pain, for each of His children. Belo noted that that place is very hard to remember when we are homeless. That it is easy to forget our eternal place when we are bleeding.
We mustn't forget, he urged. We must keep our eternal perspective and by doing so, we might continually praise the Lord.
So today, six years out, we remember.
I remember where my feet were standing, where my heart was emptied, taking these pictures. We remember the many who died. We remember the many who suffered and the many who suffer still. We remember the many who knew Him and the many who did not. The many who still do, the many who still don't.
And we remember that He is good, and that this world--with all it's shaking--is not our home.