CHARLESTON, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- It has been nearly two weeks since Hurricane Matthew tore through the island nation of Haiti leaving devastation and death in its wake.
A volunteer group from Maine was flying in for a mission trip just after Matthew hit. The group of 15 from the Charleston Pentecostal Church just returned home, and the emotion is still very raw.
"I just have come back with no words. I could show you pictures and tell you stories but I don't have any words to tell you,” Courtney Holmes said, reflecting on her first mission trip to the island.
Their planned trip just happened to fall immediately after Hurricane Matthew hit.
"It's always needy in Haiti. These types of devastation that we would be 24 hours and back to normal, they're 24 months before they're back to normal,” Matt Parker said.
Parker has traveled on countless mission trips and spearheaded this trip. He and his wife have even adopted two Haitian children.
Although they did not directly aid in hurricane relief, the group witnessed the impact such natural disasters have had on the island nation.
Parker said they saw a flood of supplies from the U.S. at the airport in Port Au Prince set to be distributed throughout the island.
"It's very satisfying to know that as a large core, not just as a small individual that can do a small amount, but as a larger core country, we do in general care about other countries. We're not all about America or all about Maine,” Parker said.
The group’s mission was to help children in an orphanage that the Charleston Pentecostal Church has helped for years. They brought books and supplies and built beds with new mattresses for the children there.
"We here in America get so wrapped up with our lives here. We have so much. We get wrapped up in our cell phones and you got to have the best cell phone and the most latest cell phone and the latest Fit Bit and this and that,” Julie Shaw said. “So many things that when you really strip them away are so not important.”
Shaw, Holmes and Parker say they intend to take even more trips like this.
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