Keokuk preacher returns home from Haiti safe

Church at Val's Orphanage; orphans and mission team were in this building ten minutes before it collapsed during the earthquake.

"It's devastation. Just total upheaval where fear and hurt is at an all time high."

Those are the words Pastor Bill Hauser of the New Testament Christian Church used to describe what he witnessed in the aftermath of the Haitian earthquake.

He arrived in Haiti the day before the quake as part of a mission trip. Pastor Hauser and the missionary team was inside the church at Val's Orphanage in Christianville, Haiti delivering donated shirts, toys and toiletries to orphans there. Ten minutes later, the building they had been in was destroyed.

Hauser said, "We got back in the truck and went ten feet and that's when we thought our truck was being bombed. It went over on its side and we heard this terrible noise and looked out there and saw dust and it was the earthquake that had totally disintegrated a home and went down to nothing."

And from that moment, the world turned upside down. This nearby lawn became make-shift medical clinic, with surgeries performed on truck tailgates. Pastor Hauser became the gate keeper. Because supplies like water were so short, only those who were hurt could come in.

Hauser said, "There was already a lawn full of people waiting for treatment. Children with unbelieveable cuts all over their bodies." He paused, "And there were some who came who didn't live."

Countless buildings like this school were demolished, but Hauser says there were some blessings in all the chaos. Children had been let out of school before the quake, so no children were trapped here...and on this lawn four babies were born. Glimpses of life in all the death and destruction.

Hauser said, "A baby was born right at the front gate of the makeshift clinic. That baby lived and and you should have heard the elation and the exalting of God."

But perhaps what hits closest to home is the close call he and these orphans had with death.

Hauser said, "The children were outside playing and just ten minutes, just ten minutes before all those children and all of our team would have been inside that church and would have perished in the rubble. We are so thankful the Lord spared our lives and we believe because of that God has a purpose for us."

Hauser said, "You don't think-- I almost lost my life. What I think about is thank you lord for sparing my life."

The orphanage where Pastor Hauser visited was completely destroyed. Now the children are crowding into a chicken house for shelter.

If you'd like to help out the Christianville Foundation or the orphanage where this work is being done, you can find all the information on this website

Pastor Hauser says 100 percent of donations goes towards the efforts in Christianville, a safe haven for Haitian Christians and missionaries.

You can also send donations to Christianville Foundation, Inc., PO Box 24598, Jacksonville, FL 32241.