We hope all is well in your respective areas today. As I write (Dana), I can look out our office window and see tall mango trees as well as beautiful palms stretching their branches towards Heaven as if they know the One who created them. There’s a beautiful breeze flowing through the room and it’s tempting to just find a hammock somewhere and enjoy this gorgeous day.
However….what has been going on in Haiti is anything but peaceful, calm, or beautiful. The backdrop provides a stark contrast to what we see outside our window. In fact, it’s difficult to write this letter because things look so dismal right now. I know that you have committed yourselves to help Rehoboth and make an impact in this country. You need to know what we are facing so that you can: 1) know how to pray and 2) fully understand how much your giving means.
Here are just a few things that have happened in the last month. Please be aware that most of these occurrences are happening in the south of Haiti — particularly around the capital (Port-au-Prince).
— People going to pick up money at money transfer offices or banks have been robbed. A few have even been shot when they refused to hand over their cash.
— The powers working to overthrow the sitting President seem to have no limit as to what they will do. Since they weren’t able to close down the schools indefinitely, they are now paying gangs to kidnap children. In the past, gangs have targeted the rich, but now they are targeting the poor as well. Mothers and children on the way to school have become victims of kidnappers and find themselves trying to scrape up the little money they have to free their children. Recently, the U.S. State Department raised its warning level for Haiti to Level 4 — a do-not-travel advisory to American citizens due to an increase in kidnappings and other violent crimes.  https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/haiti/article240941336.htm
— Another sad story last month involved the death of 15 orphans in a fire. The orphanage was unaccredited and did not meet government standards, which were never enforced. Due to a lack of electricity, the orphanage had been burning candles for light. As a result of carelessness, the orphanage went up in flames, killing everyone inside. https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/haiti/article240312411.html
— Mardi Gras in Cap-Haitian was cancelled this year. After huge stands were built downtown to receive revelers from all over the world, police officers disgruntled about not being paid destroyed them all in the middle of the night. NOTE: We have no regrets about Mardi Gras not being celebrated. It’s a time of the year when demonic spirits are invoked and due to all the drunkenness and revelry, someone inevitably gets shot and stabbed. However, for Haiti not to be able to celebrate Mardi Gras is on the scale of Americans not being able to celebrate Christmas.
— On top of all this is the gnawing hunger these people experience day after day as well as simply eking out a living. I personally know someone who has helped our ministry in various ways for over 20 years who is sleeping on a hard bench in the school where he studies because he has nowhere else to live. HIs contentious family didn’t want to share any of their home with him and kicked him out. Since he was unable to afford his own place, the school janitor allows him to sleep on a school bench. He continues to unselfishly and unreservedly give of his talents to the Lord. I have never once been disappointed in his character or his willingness to serve. If you have ever suffered from being displaced from your home, then you have an understanding of what this young man is going through.
  • Cap-Haitian: As peaceful as things look here in the north, we still have to be careful in our coming and going. We rely very heavily on our Haitian leaders and workers to know when it is safe to leave our compound and when we should stay home. Unless we have important business, we stay close to home. All our money-handling is done through transfers and some of our leaders go to the Haitian bank each time to pick up salaries, food for the feeding program, and all other needs to bring to us. Please remember to cover them in prayer. We’ve never had any problem, but with the fragile nature of this country, prayer must constantly be lifted up for these things
Now….before you decide to close this letter and move on to more cheery news….allow me to share how Rehoboth is making a difference in spite of all this.
  • Thanks to the help of Orphan’s Promise and our other faithful monthly donors, the Haitian children are able to get their hot meal 5 days a week. Speaking of Orphan’s Promise, a donor to their ministry read this newsletter and sent a check for $5,000 towards the instrument fund!
  • In case we missed it in our last letter, we would like to give a shoutout to Ruth Turner and Sunset Church of God in Tarboro for the food box they sent. It arrived right in the nick of time before our team from Richmond arrived.
  • Thanks to your generous giving, we finally completed the vehicle fund drive for John’s new car. He has a beautiful Toyota Rush and asked us to express his deep gratitude for your faithful giving.
  • We had an engineer from Sonlight Ministry here with us this weekend. He has been studying our compound to see exactly what we need in the way of solar panels. Having panels would save us loads of money since we would rarely need to buy diesel fuel. Thank you Sonlight and our dear donor friend who contacted them and who is now in the process of raising funds for us. We have been praying for solar panels for years and these prayers are finally coming to fruition!
  • Pastor John Finochio of Crossroads Life Church in Harriston, Ontario, chose to do a Facebook fund drive for his birthday recently. So far, he has raised $233 of his $1,110 goal for Bible School Scholarships for our students here in Haiti. Thank you, Pastor John!
Speaking of the Bible institute, I wanted to include this testimony which our son, John, wrote of a precious Haitian brother who’s working furiously to finish up this year.
“I met Christ after my father died and I went to live with an aunt. My aunt didn’t treat me well and there was a big void in my life. In 2015, a friend led me to church and I gave my life to Christ. I started preaching and leading worship in my church, but I quickly realized I needed to understand the Bible better so I followed a friend to IBAG. I would be happy to be a pastor. I want to give myself to the Kingdom of God in every way.”
— Stal Chedlet, 4th-year student
Despite being close to homelessness at various points in his four-year journey at our Bible college, Stal’s scholarship has made it possible for him to be in the running for valedictorian. To help us train the next generation of Haitian leaders, follow the link below:
Everything we do for this ministry has your mark on it. We could never accomplish the great things we’re doing here in Haiti without your faithful support. A former missionary to Africa recently told me that an African pastor told him he wanted come to the United States and see the money trees. Imagine someone thinking that our country is so prosperous that we have money trees available for our every need. We laugh at the thought of this, yet we must be aware that we are indeed, a blessed nation. We have the awesome privilege of helping the less fortunate with that with which He has blessed us. For this, we once again say a very humble thank you that you have chosen to give through Rehoboth Ministries. Of course, this not only applies to our American friends, but to our other very faithful donors in other countries!
NOTE: I have tried, unsuccessfully, to fix the links above so that you can just click on them. If you would like to read the articles, you can copy and paste them onto another page. If you’re short on time, I especially ask that you would read the one concerning Bible School Scholarships.