Mission: Haiti 2010
‘Only God is big enough to help’
By Gary Fallesen
President, Climbing For Christ
We sat outside Pastor Almando’s rundown home in Gentilhomme, Haiti, looking at the many sick children around us. Missionary Miguel Rubén Guante wondered if there was some sort of ointment we could put on the children to help their skin problems.
I told him that would only address a symptom, not the root of the problem. Poor nutrition and sanitation lead to serious medical issues.
“It is a big problem,” Miguel said, as he followed me up the trail. He recognized that if this was an issue in just one village, we could help. But “our arm is too short” to solve this problem through the mountains, Miguel said, his arms outstretched as far as they would go (photo above).
“Only God is big enough to help.”
We are God’s hands and feet, sent to Haitian mountain villages such as Gentilhomme, Malasi, Thoman, Soliette, and beyond. We are trying to help with the physical needs — water, food, sanitation, and health. But those physical needs are only symptoms of a much deeper ill. Haiti needs spiritual healing.
Haiti needs Jezi.
So we teach and preach about Jesus. We deliver the Good News found in His Word. We meet with pastors and leaders from a dozen churches in 11 villages who attend our monthly seminary. We visit schools to share Gospel stories with children who are the hope of Haiti’s future. We pray for a people who are products of a culture possessed by voodoo and the lies of the evil one.
Young girl in Malasi going for water.
More churches and schools are coming in 2010. Climbing For Christ is currently affiliated with four churches: Gentilhomme, Malasi and Thoman in Haiti, and Jimani on the Dominican side of the border just east of the Chaine de la Selle mountain villages where we have been ministering since the summer of 2005. We have built or are building churches and schools in each of those four villages. Two others — a second church in Gentilhomme and a church in Soliette — are under prayerful consideration for affiliation. We are planning to rebuild a school in Soliette that was first destroyed by a flood in 2004 and then wrecked by a hurricane in 2007.
We are supporting six teachers of nearly 300 students in three schools during the 2009-2010 academic year. Those teachers attend monthly training, much like the seminary that is equipping pastors and church leaders to do the Lord’s work. This is the third year for the Climbing For Christ seminary.
The Seedling Bank project will continue as we aid hundreds of farmers in an attempt to grow better and more sustainable crops. An emphasis will be placed on educating people about nutrition, and the need for improved diets and consumption of water. To help with the latter, we hope our delayed Gentilhomme water project will come to fruition in March 2010. A program on sanitation is another goal for 2010.
Medical assistance, which began on a short-term mission in 2008 and continued through 2009, will go on. Dr. Steve Quakenbush of Cañon City, Colo. gave several individuals in Gentilhomme and Malasi some basic medical training during the December 2009 mission. Our goal is to empower and supply these villages with ever-improving health conditions.
But we are interested in more than the physical health of our Haitian friends. Our primary goal is to help improve the spiritual health of those living in the mountains of Haiti. We serve a God who is big enough to heal these people and their land. He is the Great Physician, the maker of heaven and earth.
Posted Dec. 29, 2009