I am glad to be back after a two-day site visit to the Stone of Help network church in the village of Sanite in the south of the country, near Les Cayes. Four of us made the trip, to include leaders from the church in Martissant (Port-au-Prince). See this map of all 11 of our network churches in Haiti.
We drove for about four hours from Port-au-Prince to reach the big city of Les Cayes at around 11 am. We parked the car in the city and hired two motorcycles to drive us to the town of Chantal. It was an interesting ride with three people on each motorcycle! Once we reached the L’acul River in Chantal, we had to continue on foot to the church in the Communal section of Fond-Palmiste, because there is no route even for the motorcycles to get any further.
We walked up the mountain for forty minutes to reach the church. It is a pleasant, cool and simple little church literally on top of the mountain. While I was climbing, the surrounding mountains appeared to grow bigger and bigger. I then fully realized the true meaning of the Haitian proverb: “Dèyè mòn Gen mòn” (behind the mountains, more mountains)
We met with the elder in charge at Sanite and the Church Committee. They were so happy and expressed their joy to know that we were thinking about them. Our presence was really an encouragement for them. Among other things, we talked about the Ministry vision, some issues facing by the church, and the bible-study-based orientation of all the churches that are part of Stone of Help. The church has a real hunger to learn and a great desire to study the Word of God, just as much as what I have seen in the other churches we work with, such as Ganthier.
The next morning was Sunday, and the church gathered for worship with a total of 41 adults and 23 children. According to the elder in charge, this was about 1/3 of the congregation. Many people have become discouraged because they have not had a pastor for the last five years. They want to be disciple, but there has been no one to teach them. Yet, many people came from a long way, up to three-hour walk, to get to the church on Sunday.
This visit was a great reminder to me of what our ministry is all about: “transforming lives through Christian discipleship and action.” Please continue to pray for the church at Sanite. The road is long and hard for them. Pray that God would raise up local leaders to encourage and train the people, and that their lives would be touched through our ministry.
God bless my friends. Love in Christ.
Jean Abel Pierre