HAITI: TURMOIL. POVERTY. HOPE.
Riots. Violence in the streets. Injustice. Scarce food and water. Poverty. People hurting and hungry. . . .
The reality of the ongoing turmoil and escalation of violence in Haiti can be hard to grasp—emotionally and spiritually. As North Americans, many of us go about our days unaffected by this kind of crisis. We make comments on unusually cold winter weather and don’t give a second thought to what we’ll eat for breakfast. And even for those of us that may cultivate a broader awareness of global news— one has to dig deep to find even a short update on the current situation in Haiti.
At the end of this past February, the escalating unrest in Haiti caused Global Partners to evacuate all of its missionary personnel. No missionaries were harmed.
According to Global Partners Executive Director Dr. Dennis Jackson, the situation in Haiti had become unsafe and without any indication of stopping. He stated, “After focused prayer and dialog with our Global Partners Haiti leadership team and local contacts, we sought and followed the counsel of our international security consultants in making the decision to evacuate our missionaries.
Although the civil unrest and antigovernment protests have lessened (at least at the time of this writing), there is no guarantee the volatile situation has come to an end. While our Haiti missionary team has expressed appreciation for their safety, they regret having to leave their Haitian brothers and sisters. Following are some of their reflections, as they face the unknowns surrounding their evacuation:
- We are sad to be in this position. We are leaning into God and his promises for us and the people of Haiti. Promises of deliverance where the light overtakes the darkness.
- We are not strangers to these demonstrations . . . but after six days of blocked roads and no signs of letting up, we began noticing that this was no “normal” demonstration. There wasn’t fear. We didn’t feel like we were in danger. We had to make the best decision possible with the information we had. And as hard as that was, it meant leaving Haiti until things calm back down. We love Haiti. We love the Haitian people. We long to see justice and the end of corruption.
- Evacuation is not pleasant. It’s confusing. It’s unsettling. It’s disrupting. It’s frightening. Where do we go? Are we returning in a week, a month? How do we pack? Summer clothes, winter clothes, or both? How do we even prepare for what’s ahead?
- Evacuation is hard. Hopelessness is harder. Will you pray for this nation that has already suffered so much from poor leadership, corruption, and power-hungry people?
- We have hope that the church here, like everywhere, can show what it means to follow Jesus, “to do justice, love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God.”
- We know that nothing is wasted, and God is not surprised by any of this. We know that he knew this was going to happen long before we ever did. We trust that he is continuing to teach us and mold us into whom he wants us to be, as we go through situations like this.
So much uncertainty ahead. Yet, hope remains—even when it cannot be seen clearly. . . .
Earlier this winter, Alyssa Curry, a high school senior in Columbus, Indiana, felt led to provide those in her community with an opportunity to give hope for Haiti. After learning about the ongoing need for several schools to be rebuilt through Global Partners’ Rebuilding Haiti project, she felt led to focus her senior project on an event raising funds and awareness for her church’s (Flintwood Wesleyan Church) Hope for Haiti ministry focus.
Alyssa invited and received her whole community’s participation. She invited friends and family to help, and through her faithfulness—their participation helped them to grow also. She shared that some of her friends commented on the church’s support for the event. “It felt like a family,” they said. She was glad for them to see her trust in God and experience his provision firsthand.
The event raised just over $2,000—doubling the initial goal! Alyssa was reminded that prayer helped the whole event take place—from start to finish. While stepping out of her comfort zone, she gained insights about herself, grew in leadership, and experienced God in his fullness.
Like Alyssa, what if we all pursued prayer in this season of uncertainty for Haiti?
A simple but powerful part we can all play. Prayer for Haiti, for its people, for our missionary team, and for the hope of Jesus to come—even if it seems to hide on the chaotic days like those that have filled these past several months
HOPE THROUGH GIVING
According to Greg Edmonds, Global Partners missionary and Haiti mission director, the Haitian staff of the Wesleyan Mission in Haiti depends on the funds generated by short-term mission teams to pay their salaries. Mission team travel to Haiti has been cancelled through March, and this date will likely be extended indefinitely due to the unrest. Food is becoming scarce on the island of La Gonave, and what is available has become expensive. People are hungry and desperate. Greg requests that Wesleyans continue to pray for Haitians.
The Global Partners Haiti team continues to navigate their recent evacuation with grace and prayer. Please continue to prayerfully journey with them during these uncertain days and the hoped-for restoration to follow.
To help our Haitian brothers and sisters in their time of need, give today to provide assistance to the Haitian staff of the Wesleyan Mission in Haiti, including those working at the guesthouse on La Gonave and the guesthouse at the Ortlip Ministry Center.
By Check: Make checks payable to Global Partners. On the memo line write WM06-0126/Haiti Mission Assistance. Mail to Global Partners, PO Box 50434, Indianapolis, IN, 46250.
Online: www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/the-wesleyan-church-of-canadacentral-canada-district/ then select General Fund and include WM06-0126/ Haiti Mission Assistance in the comments.
By Check: Make checks payable to The Wesleyan Church of Canada. On the memo line write WM06-0126/Haiti Mission Assistance. Mail to The Wesleyan Church of Canada, PO Box 4458, Sussex, NB, E4E 5L6.