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Life in a Borrowed House

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti—Pastor Previlon Noel’s wife Saretha was napping in her home at 4:40 p.m. on Jan. 12 when her two children rushed inside to tell her that two guests had arrived outside. After talking to the visitors for a few minutes, Saretha started to walk back into the house. Just before she reached the door, the 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck, flattening the house in seconds.

Now Pastor Noel and his wife live in a borrowed house with 28 children, many of whom were orphaned by the earthquake. The owner of the house said they could live there without cost until he gets the money to finish the house and move in, but that might be only a couple months. With no beds, the children are sleeping on a sheet of plastic that covers a bare concrete floor.

Chris Hindal, director of International Ministries for the GARBC, met Pastor Noel on a recent survey trip to Haiti, giving him a financial gift and praying with the family. It would cost Pastor Noel about $4,000 to rent the house for a year.

More pastors are in need of help whom Hindal did not have time to visit on his brief trip. He is urging churches to raise an offering to purchase building supplies, and organize mission work teams that could rebuild a Haitian pastor’s home or church.

Chris Hindal, director of International Ministries for the GARBC, is arranging relief through the International Partnership of Fundamental Baptist Ministries. During a recent trip to Haiti, Hindal rented a guesthouse in Port-au-Prince to house missions teams traveling this summer to rebuild churches and pastors’ homes. Noting that construction in Haiti will likely use cement block walls, wood trusses, and sheetmetal roofing, Hindal is recruiting work teams with carpentry and masonry skills.

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:

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.

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