Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Welcome Home Gary and Marilyn!

Marilyn left for furlough at the beginning of June and Gary followed, leaving Haiti in the end of July. Because of Marilyn’s schedule with Hope for Kidz and Gary’s schedule with teams last summer they were unable to leave at the same time but they were together once both in the US. During their time away, they spent time with friends and family, visited some of the RMI Sister Churches and some of their personal supporters, as well as spent time at their cabin in Washington State.


Marilyn returned on September 3 and Gary on September 18. Marilyn spent time with friends and family, attended a family reunion, read lots of books and worked on getting their cabin back in shape after a flood last year. Gary said he had a great time but was ready to come ‘home’, referring to Haiti. He said during the three months he was gone, he visited 11 states, slept in 14 different beds, visited 6 Sister Churches, fished for salmon and hiked in the mountains. Gary’s additional time gave him the chance to spend a little bit of time with Jules and Marthe Gedna in Boston. He said Jules’ spirits were high and he was doing as well as he could be with all of the cancer treatment he is enduring. Please keep Jules, his wife, and their family in your prayers.

And welcome home Gary and Marilyn! We’re glad you’re both back!

Sound Systems equal Gospel Systems…

Recently, we have had a several US churches purchase sound systems for their church in Haiti. It has been great to watch and listen to the reactions as these get delivered. We recently delivered one of these systems to Fond Deron. Their Sister Church is Christ Community Church in Ocala, FL.

When we delivered the system, the people were overjoyed! There were literally squeals of delight. Jumping up and down, waving hands in the air, cheering, audible praises to God, laughing…

Why so much excitement? Sound Systems are the mouth piece of God here in Haiti. Without a sound system, it is difficult to project the message of the Gospel to the lost. With a sound system, the Haitian people can project and proclaim the good news more effectively. Their faith has opportunity to be more contagious. Their songs of joy may reach the ears of the downcast. They may hold open air evangelistic services much more effectively in the town squares. With the increased volume in the church, they may call out to people to come within the sanctuary.

Fond Deron church members had just met on Saturday to pray, and collect funds for a desperately needed sound system. Yet, they were unable to collect funds since people just didn’t have anything to give. On Monday, RMI showed up with the Sound System that Christ Community donated. Praise the Lord!

On behalf of your brothers and sisters in Fond Deron, THANK YOU Christ Community!

More pictures here.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

A Week in the Outback…

I just got back from another week out in the Haitian Outback. Only 74.9 miles (42.4 miles as the crow flies), but it took us 10 hours to get there, and 7 hours to get home. Long trip over the mountains, but well worth it!

We went out to Chambellan, Haiti (GPS Waypoint and GPS Trip Track), in the Grand Anse Department of Haiti with Crossroads Bible Church. Crossroads has had this partnership with the Chambellan Baptist Church for the last 21 years through RMI. Much has been accomplished in those 21 years!

This trip was all about coming together to put a roof on the church. Crossroads Bible provided all the funds, and Chambellan Baptist provided most of the

sweat! Crossroads thought they were putting a new roof on the old church. But, the pastor at Chambellan pulled a fast one and built an entire new church just before the team’s arrival. So, the new roof went on a new church! It was exciting to see it come to completion. Both US team members and Haitian church members worked very hard. It always thrills my soul when the multicultural body of Christ works together to accomplish a singular purpose.

Highlights? Great celebration and welcoming parade upon our arrival after dark, someone accepted Christ in the Sunday morning service, finishing the church roof, teaching young Haitian kids how to hammer and take part in the process, ladies tea, taking part in the very first church service in their new building!

Here are a few more pics of the team work. More pictures can be seen here.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Global Leadership Summit Pilot Program in Cayes

For the past few years the Willow Creek Leadership Summit has been broadcast in Port au Prince in the fall. Many of the RMI Staff and some of the RMI Haitian Sister Church Pastors have had the opportunity to attend. Most recently the program was broadcast in November of last year and then just last week we had the privilege to host the first of hopefully annual follow up seminars which have been designed to provide an opportunity for our Sister Church Pastors to debrief and discuss topics they hear at the seminar and to provide a chance to break down the content into a culturally relevant context, giving them the opportunity to apply what they learned in the culture and communities in which they minister. RMI President Dan Shoemaker and Director of the Strategic Leadership Network for Vision New England Jack Richardson visited Cayes, Haiti last week and facilitated two days of meetings in which Pastors and RMI Staff who attended last years seminar sat and revisited some of the video content and then participated in group and round table discussions. Between twenty-five and thirty pastors attended each of the two days and a lot of great discussion was had, ideas were shared and Pastors left inspired and encouraged.

GLS Pastors5
Two of the attendees participate in a discussion.GLS Dan
Dan Shoemaker talking with the group.GLS Pastors 6
One of the breakout sessions to discuss the video they had just viewed.

We are also looking forward to having the Leadership Summit broadcast here in Cayes (headquarters for RMI in Haiti) in December!

All the pictures from the event can be viewed here.