Eugene Cho

stories of haiti: collective grief and hope

I was intending to blog more during my time here in Haiti but to be honest, I’m having information and emotional overload. I’m just taking everything in as I listen to people, drive around, meet relief workers, spending the nights on the roof and soaking in the sounds of the neighborhood, and hear the numerous stories of the Haitians we’re meeting.

There are so many stories from Haiti – a collective grief and hope.

Here’s one story from a gentleman named James who is working as a translator for World Concern. I’ve really enjoyed meeting him and hearing a glimpse of his story.

James is fortunate to be alive. On the day of the earthquake, he was late for his university classes and thus, he was not in his university when the building collapsed during the quake. Unfortunately, many including his teachers, classmates, and his mother did not survive the quake.

Hear his story and consider his words:

“The real work starts now…”

We can’t do that work for Haiti or for James. They have to do that work but the question is, “How can we come alongside our Haitian brothers and sisters?”

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7 Responses

  1. goldfearsnofire says:

    thanks for the update eugene. it is a good thing to hear personal stories. the people of haiti remain in our thoughts and prayers. i see you fulfilling the words of james 1:26-27, and know that you are bringing hope, inspiration, and encouragement to many in haiti and back at home. thank you eugene!

  2. Becky says:

    Wow, what a compelling video. It’s so hard to imagine how many others there have stories like James… losing friends and family members. Though it becomes easy for us to forget this tragedy happened and move on, it’s videos like this that remind us how the real work is yet to come. Thanks for sharing PE!

  3. […] EVERYONE was impacted by the earthquake. You can sense that there is a collective grief and a desire for a collective hope. Over couple days, we interviewed 8 random women and 5 of them had lost at least one of their […]

  4. […] EVERYONE was impacted by the earthquake. You can sense that there is a collective grief and a desire for a collective hope. Over couple days, we interviewed 8 random women and 5 of them had lost at least one of their […]

  5. […] Humanitarian:  I like my friend’s take on what’s going on in Haiti.  What are your […]

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Ok. I'm convinced. I'm moving to  New Zealand, buy land, raise sheep, and play rugby. This place is beautiful. I see you, Auckland. It's great to meet you for the first time. Eager to learn from local practitioners, encourage local pastors, teach from the Scriptures, and collaborate with other Kingdom folks. #newzealand Paying respects. Learning the stories of the First Peoples of Australia at the exhibit at Melbourne Museum.  So painful and tragic what many have endured through the injustice of colonization here and around the world. Everyone loves the idea of reconciliation...not many understand the messy and arduous work involved of learning others' stories, truthtelling, confessing, repenting, dismantling, healing, and peacemaking. It may feel like a ritual but it was good to participate in this: The Justice Conference acknowledges the traditional owners on the land on which we meet – the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to all Wurundjeri elders past and present. #JusticeConfAu Whoa. Beautiful. Mesmerizing. Also reminded that while buildings are nice and have their place, the building isn't the church Let's fully welcome refugees. Remember, refugees aren't terrorists...they're the ones fleeing away from violence, war, and terrorism. 
Afraid? Me too. It's ok to acknowledge we're afraid since it confirms we're all...just...human. We're all afraid on some level especially when our culture seems to run on the currency of fear but as we live out our faith in Christ and more deeply embody compassion and love, fear begins to dissipate. It's also incredibly critical to know that agencies are implementing some of the most rigorous and thorough vetting ever. 
My family hosted a Somalian Muslim family from a refugee camp years ago through @WorldRelief. It was eye opening, challenging (especially with language realities), and yet, encouraging...and we hope to host families again in the future as they resettle in a completely new and foreign city and country. It's a terrifying experience. And while not a refugee, I remember the first few months as an immigrant when I was six years old. To this day, I remember the kindness of folks that helped us through that transition. Lift a prayer for me as I'm privileged to collaborate in ministry here in Melbourne, Australia. Meeting with local pastors, teaching at the Justice Conference (10/21-22). Then, preaching at the Bridge Church on Sunday  Pray that in preaching the whole Gospel from the Scriptures, I may honor God, point people to Jesus, and be sensitive to the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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