Almost. But not quite.
We are back from St. Marc and so very, very happy with how things went today. Before I go any further I want to say a big, BIG thank you to those of you that were holding us up in prayer.
We were able to leave Olivia with friends so I could go with Chris today. Also, the UN guy was able to come and when we saw him he was very clear about wanting to be there to support us and that he felt it was incredibly important. Several other missionaries also came and a Haitian friend of ours that Chris knows from his YWAM days.
Our big concern was that we would get there and find out that the guy had been released for some reason, but he was there. Answer number one. :)
We anticipated that there would be a lot of other people there to support the other guy, and that the hearing would be held in a big court room where everyone could come in and heckle and harass etc. Not the case. We ended up in an office about the size of our bathroom. We squeezed in there with all of the lawyers, the judge, all of our people, the guy, and the TWO people that came with him. TWO. And neither of them said a peep the entire time. I had been praying, and asked you to pray, that God would silence those that would want to cause problems, and he answered that very, very specifically. This is also a big deal for us because it’s kind of like the “bully on the playground” thing. When a bully is surrounded by his “friends” those people often go along with things because they are afraid to go against them. When you take the bully out of the picture it gives people a chance to reflect and make a decision for themselves. We’re hoping that those who associated with this guy, and the others involved will now have some time to really reflect on how close they want to be with people like this, especially when those people get sent to prison. Today the guy that was arrested didn’t have any of his “friends” around and we’re pretty confident that that sent him a message – that all those that had been on his side until now were no where to be seen today.
When the judge saw the UN guy he realized this was a serious case and I believe that affected how he proceeded. He was very attentive, asked good questions of both Chris and the guy that was arrested. He gave our lawyer plenty of time to talk, let the drama of Haitian court go on for a bit, then called everything back to order. The issue with the arrest warrants expiring never came up.
I was praying the whole time that God would give him wisdom and the ability to see the lies that were there. I felt that happening. About halfway through I felt like he was leaning in our favor.
There are some weird laws on the books about which court can try a case based on when the accused was arrested. If they were arrested in the act, they can be tried in the court that we were in today. If it was after the fact it needs to go to a different court. The judge ruled that because of the arrest happening months after we need to have the case tried in the next court, not the one we were in. This is GOOD.
The decision means that the accused has to stay in prison, which is the biggest thing we were hoping for. The judge from that court told our lawyer that it will probably be at least a month before he even has a chance to review the case because he has a stack of cases before this one. Before it goes to trial the judge will be working with the police to have the other two people we have arrest warrants for arrested. After the three are all in custody they will proceed with the case. This is a VERY GOOD thing for a couple of reasons. The first is that the guy already in custody will have plenty of time to think and chances are pretty good that he’ll start talking and rat out anyone else involved thinking it will work in his favor. Secondly, once the others are in custody the police know that they will start talking against each other and more confessions will come out. For us it just means that there is one less person on the street.
We’re going to celebrate by hanging out as a family tonight. A celebratory dinner of grilled cheese was already consumed. Some phone calls have already been made. There will be bathing of the wee one and maybe a glass of wine for the adult crew.
We would appreciate your prayers over the coming days because we anticipate there could be community problems. We are praying that people that may be interested in those activities would think well and hard and realize that it’s not really a good idea, especially now that someone who went before them is in prison for an indefinite period of time.