Mission: Haiti 2009
Special Report: A Plan for Haiti
By GARY FALLESEN
President, Climbing For Christ
“… Se sou wòch sa a m'ap bati legliz mwen. Ata lanmò p'ap kapab fè l' anyen.”
– Matye 16:18 (Haitian Creole Version)
This Gospel verse has guided our work in Haiti since the beginning, since July 2005 when we pledged to build a church in the mountain village of Gentilhomme. “… and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it” (Matthew 16:18, NIV).
In 2009, we will stay true to these words. We will continue to build His church on the rocky ground that is Haiti. Because only the church – filled with Holy Spirit power – can overcome the spiritual and physical poverty of the hemisphere’s poorest country.
Currently, there are three churches affiliated with Climbing For Christ. Le Gliz Monte Pou Krist (the church of Climbing For Christ), they are called. They are located in Gentilhomme, Malasi, and the Dominican border town of Jimani, where our missionary Miguel Rubén Guante and hundreds of other Haitians live and work.
Both the church at Malasi and the church at Jimani need to be rebuilt.
The three-walled Malasi church,
where worship and school cannot be held when it is too cold.
Malasi’s church has only three walls still standing after one (the length of the church) needed to be taken down before it fell on the 100 people who worship there or the 60 children who go to school there.
Jimani’s church has been in various forms of tentative construction since the original building was washed away in the devastating Pic la Selle flood of 2004. Not only was the structure destroyed, many lives were lost – at least 2,000 on the Dominican side of the border and 3,000 on the Haitian side – including the pastor and his wife. Since then, Miguel has acted as the church’s pastor. In December 2008, during our mission trip, Enel Fleurimon was prayed over by members of the Climbing For Christ seminary as the new pastor of the Jimani church.
The church at Jimani is a three-year project, culminating in the start of a residential school for exceptional students, who will be trained up to overcome generational slavery to voodoo.
Our first goal in God’s plan to build His church on the rocks in the western half of Hispaniola is to finish the construction of the churches at Malasi and Jimani. The budget for these two projects:
- Malasi church $10,450
- Jimani church and residential school $22,900
Two other villages – Soliette and Thoman – have prayerfully requested affiliation with Climbing For Christ.
Pastor Italian describing how the tropical storm in October 2008 took off the roof and collapsed a wall on his son and him at the church in Soliette.
The church at Soliette, also destroyed in the flood of 2004 and partially rebuilt through relief funds, collapsed during a tropical storm in October 2008. Pastor Edma Saintilme (known as Pastor Italian) had asked Climbing For Christ to help finish building the church before the tropical storm. Miguel has proposed scrapping what remains of the old structure (which was too large and poorly constructed) and building a new church.
Likewise, the pastor in Thoman (Luterne Polissain) has asked for a new church. But for different reasons. The church at Thoman is held in a building that is community property. It is used for all manner of events, including voodoo ceremonies. The budget for these two projects:
- Soliette church $10,450
- Thoman church $10,450
We are the body
As we know from Scripture, the church is not a building. The church consists of the body of believers. Every believer is a part of the body of Christ, and all are important. “If one part suffers, every part suffers with it” (1 Corinthians 12:26). The suffering of our brothers and sisters in Haiti pains us greatly. We must work to improve their condition – both spiritually and physically.
There are many facets to this:
- Communication – Cell phones and computers make it possible for us to work together from afar. But airtime is far from free in Haiti. Annual budget: $4,200.
- Education – Supporting four teachers ($125 each per month during the school year, September through June) in two villages. Annual budget: $5,000. Additionally, there is a need for school supplies, which often are donated by supporters prior to short-term mission trips. Benches need to be built for the school and church in Malasi. Budget: $1,000.
- Health care – “Insurance” ($50 per month) for treatment at the Jimani clinic. Annual budget: $600. Additionally, there is a need for medical supplies, which are acquired and/or donated by members who are health-care professionals. NOTE: There is ongoing need for the “Donya Relief Effort” (to help lightning victim Donya Jean Riska of Malasi; CLICK HERE for our “Mission Moments”). Also, we are planning to bring three children (Gilbert, Sainte Anne, and Micho) to the United States for medical care in the summer of 2009. Gilbert will be sized for a prosthetic, while Sainte Anne and Micho will undergo knee surgery that will enable them to walk on heretofore crippled legs. Procedures, rehabilitation, and food and housing are being donated. Airfare is required for each of the children, plus Miguel and possibly one other adult to escort them from Haiti to the U.S. Budget: $5,000.
- Legalization – Fees for recognition of Climbing For Christ by Dominican and Haitian governments. Also, passports for individuals, ranging from pastors to people who need medical care. Budget: $2,400.
- Missionary support – Miguel is paid $350 a month, although his work for the kingdom is priceless. Annual budget: $4,200.
- Sanitation – Building arborloos (toilets) in Gentilhomme and Malasi at a cost of $80 per toilet. To date, seven arborloos have been constructed in Gentilhomme and one in Malasi. An additional 25-30 in each village in 2009 is a reasonable goal. Annual budget: $4,800.
- Seedling Bank project – Helping farmers grow more and better crops. Nurseries have been built in Gentilhomme (photo above) and Malasi, and banana plants as well as coffee, orange, and avocado seeds have been provided. Fertilizer and more agricultural supplies are needed. Annual budget: $8,000.
- Seminary – A monthly training of pastors and church leaders from 7-10 villages. The seminary is in its second year and is regularly attended by 20-30 ministry leaders. We provide food and teaching tools. Annual budget: $3,600.
- Social aid – Clothing and other basics are donated by churches and individuals, including wedding dresses to be used multiple times in wedding ceremonies in several villages. These items are delivered annually by our short-term mission teams.
- Transportation – We continue to wait on the Lord for delivery of a heavy-duty pickup truck for use on the rocky, riverbed roads in the Chaine de la Selle mountains. This vehicle will be used to carry people and supplies, and for medical emergencies. (For example: transportation costs during the relief effort for lightning-victim Donya Jean Riska were in excess of $1,100.)
- Water project – Providing safe, clean water to villagers in Gentilhomme and Malasi. CLICK HERE for details on this project. Budget: $4,085.
We have been blessed by donations from churches, ministries, businesses, and individuals in the past, and continue to ask those who have been given much to consider helping those who have very little. Our Haiti budget for 2009 is $97,135.
We thank those who have supported this ministry in Haiti in the past and those who have become monthly donors. You are a blessing to the least of these.
Posted Feb. 4, 2009