PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti—Living in tents, many of their homes and churches destroyed by the Haiti earthquake, international partners of the GARBC are waiting for the support of U.S. churches. Chris Hindal, director of international ministries for the GARBC, has just returned from visiting Baptist pastors who have been displaced by the disaster and have nowhere to turn for help.
Through the International Partnership of Fundamental Baptist Ministries, Hindal is urging GARBC churches to assemble work teams that would be willing to go to Haiti and take money. He has rented a guesthouse in Port-au-Prince to house missions teams traveling to Haiti this summer to rebuild churches and pastors’ homes. Noting that construction in Haiti will likely use cement block walls, wood trusses, and sheet-metal roofing, Hindal is recruiting work teams with carpentry and masonry skills.
- Contact Chris Hindal for more information about church missions trips to Haiti.
In addition to organizing church-based relief teams, Hindal is coordinating other relief efforts, suggesting that churches consider a $5,000 offering for building materials that can be purchased and delivered to the construction sites in advance of their team’s arrival.
- Donate online to the Gospel Literature Services Emergency Relief Fund.
- Receive a church offering and send it payable to Gospel Literature Services with “Emergency Relief” on the memo line.
- Invite Chris Hindal to present GARBC International Ministries at your church. E-mail Chris: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pastor Prédestin Hérard, president of Association des Énglises Evangeliques Baptistes d´ Haiti (the Association of Evangelical Baptist Churches of Haiti), will be coordinating work teams and their transportation in the Port-au-Prince area. Of the 28 Baptist churches in this fellowship, 17 were damaged or destroyed by the earthquake, along with the homes of 10 pastors.
John Greening, national representative of the GARBC, calls the association’s relationship with Pastor Hérard “a loyal friendship.”
“This dear brother has expressed courageous faith as he endeavors to care for his flock of believers and the association of sister churches he leads,” Greening says, noting that the GARBC’s growing international partnerships have jump-started ministry in Haiti. Independent Baptist churches and missionaries have been supporting relief agencies, sponsoring orphanages, and planting churches for many years. Greening notes that these relationships have become vital during the post-earthquake relief efforts.
Pastor Savin Lestain lives with his family of seven in a one-room plastic tent. He has no front yard or backyard, but he is surrounded by 45,000 new neighbors in a tent city that sprang up in the aftermath of the earthquake. Pastor Lestain channels his ministry efforts into daily tent visitation. Already he has led 40 people in the camp to Christ.
His church building should, by all rights, be condemned, but the members still gather inside because they lack any other meeting place. Pastor Lestain says that many members have stopped coming because they are afraid the structure will collapse.
- Donate online to the GARBC International Ministries Emergency Relief Fund.