Happy New Year’s Day and Haiti Independence Day!
On January 1, 1804, Haiti became an independent country, unique in being the only country that resulted from a slave uprising. As with all countries, they have faced and continue to face many challenges; however, their unique history has some extra challenges due to the pressures of outside countries. For the USA, Haiti, and for all mankind, let us heed St. Paul’s directive to Timothy: “First of all, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Timothy 2:4). This is God’s Word to mankind for He works through and with mankind to bring peace, quietness, godliness, and dignity. Happy New Year!
The ministry had some attractive activities that reached out into the community as they celebrated the birth of our Lord. They are in the process of preparing for a celebration with New Year’s Day and Independence Day. This January 1st celebration for our ministry (and I think much of the Haitian culture) is a religious festival more than a secular event, which is different from the way American culture deals with both New Year’s Day and Independence Day. We ask the Holy Spirit to work with and through the Word of God that will be shared with those of La Maison des Agneaux de Dieu Orphelinat (MADO-The House of the Lambs of God Orphanage) as well as those they touch in their community. May the peace of God rule in their hearts and minds through all the other tribulations in this fallen world.
Rev. Paul voiced some concerns over property taxes and other taxes that are facing the ministry at this time. “We are forced to pay taxes, yet we see no results of paying taxes—not even any kind of care for our roads so that we can travel.” (November was a extremely wet month, and the roads around MADO’s facilities were not usable.) I tried to empathize and sympathize with his situation. I left that part of our conversation pondering Americans’ concern over the government’s use of taxes; we do see, at least, care for our roads.
There is a lot of healthy activity going on at MADO. Rev. Paul reported, “Grades for school work were handed out last week. We are very thankful for some Christmas time donations as we were able to distribute gifts to staff and children. The gifts were for needed supplies of socks, shoes, and other items like that. These gifts are greatly appreciated, thank you.” He also reported that December has allowed for healthy growth of their gardens; “We are harvesting Congo beans, bananas, plantain, cassava, sweet potatoes, corn, and even some rice. This is very good; thank God for this food.” January begins their dry season. May it not be as intense of a dry season as last year.
Rev. Sam Wiseman
NEHLM Pastoral Adviser