Suffering in Silence
Ansouby had never spoken a word. As a child of mute parents, his hearing and speech impairment often left him feeling isolated. As his peers chatted and laughed, Ansouby watched quietly from a distance struggling to engage. Lacking resources to help Ansouby, his parents brought the six year old boy to Harvest Care Children’s Home outside Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
The directors of the home gently encouraged Ansouby, patiently working with him day after day. With their consistent support, he slowly began to make progress. Soon after arriving at the home, the staff celebrated as he uttered his first words. As his language progressed, his confidence grew. Now, at 14 years old Ansouby shows no signs of his childhood struggles to communicate and connect with others. Kind and respectful, Ansouby is well-liked by the other children at the home, thriving socially. As the second oldest child at the home, many of the younger children admire him. Not only is he extremely articulate in Creole, but now he is also learning to speak English.
Passion for Music
Last year, Ansouby formed a fast friendship with a visiting team member who played the guitar, leading Ansouby and the other children in worship. Eager to learn the new songs, the children begged to hear them again and again, practicing the words until they had memorized each song. Fully uninhibited, they sang at the top of their lungs. Through this experience, God sparked in him a passion for music. Music was more than just a creative outlet for Ansouby to express his emotions; he longed to use it to worship. When the visiting team member learned of Ansouby’s growing passion, he sprung into action, quickly locating a used guitar from the U.S. for the aspiring musician.
In July, Jenna Schroeder, a U.S. staff member, who was leading a visiting mission team, hand-delivered the special gift. When they arrived at Harvest Care Children’s Home, Ansouby ran outside to greet the team.
“I have a surprise for you,” she said, smiling widely as she lugged the bulky black case across the yard.
Ansouby’s eyes widened, eyeing the guitar case. “Wow,” he whispered, “I can’t believe this is actually happening.”
Ansouby unfastened the latches and opened the dusty lid, gingerly lifting the guitar onto his lap. Giggles erupted from the nearby children. Curiosity growing, they moved closer to get a better view. A team member showed Ansouby how to properly hold the guitar and demonstrated several chords. Now, it was Ansouby’s turn. A crowd of children encircled him, watching intently as he strummed the strings. The hot Haiti sun beat down on his neck, as he played his first notes.
“It was so moving to see what God did in the heart of this young boy and his longing to play music. I was reminded of the depth of God’s love for Ansouby. God orchestrated a multitude of details to demonstrate just how much He cares for him, going to great lengths to meet the desires of his heart,” Jenna shared.
This summer, Ansouby’s story continues. As he enters the next season of his life, he is using his newfound voice and dreaming of a future as a musician. In the fall, he will start guitar lessons, sharpening his skills with a local music teacher. Music has created a safe place for Ansouby to heal and grow into the person God created him to be. Our hope is the guitar will continue to bring joy to Ansouby and those around him, as God uses his music to invite others into worship.