There are mountains in the distance on three sides, grassy areas for the goats and cows, lots of rocks, gardens protected by thorny hedge rows and large open spaces. When we first visited, there did not seem to be many houses in this area. What we did not see were the small homes tucked away in the surrounding villages. Marie, a wonderful Haitian woman, first took us to the Dessources area in 2005, which many, many years ago was sugar cane fields. Marie saw the potential for a church, a school and a new home to raise the orphaned children.
One of the areas of Haiti we have the privilege of working in and serving for over 10 years is in the flat lands just north of Port au Prince.
Once the El Shaddai church was planted in 2006 the people in the area were drawn to all the new activity and visitors.
What happened next was truly a work of God, as the place that was once a voodoo influenced village became a community of hope. Lives have been changed, including a voodoo priestess that turned her life over to Christ and tore down the temple. There are so many stories and people that have been touched…
Job, the man who cultivates and oversees the community garden, Chrislyne who lost her hand as a child in a terrible accident and became one of the first people to step forward to serve in the new church, Savier, the Haitian ‘MacGyver’ and steadfast jack of all trades that always greets you with a smile & hug, and so many more. The people in the community have been wonderful as we have established relationships over the years, which continue today.
We have worked on many construction projects, conducted summer bible clubs, organized food distributions; provide educational funding and there have been many other projects through the El Shaddai church.
The earthquake of 2010 displaced thousands of Haitians from their city homes. They moved to a nearby open area that is now called Canaan, just outside of Port au Prince. The sudden influx of so many people in the area created new challenges and opportunities. There are always things to do, people to help, kids to teach and the gospel to be shared…never a dull minute.
El Shaddai’s ministry and work continues to evolve to where Haitians from the El Shaddai church are now conducting mission trips to remote areas within Haiti to share the gospel and provide sustenance to other Haitians. This is the church as it was designed by God, people taking care of people, neighbors loving neighbors.
Espwa is only one of many ministries serving in Haiti, and you don’t have to be in Haiti long to know the need continues to be great. Our hope and prayer is God would allow us to continue with our work and support of the El Shaddai church and mission. You can be a part of this work through your donations and prayers. Thank you for investing in eternal things by providing a way to send hope. Espwa shines through Haiti because of your generosity.