Tag Archives: Haiti

Reporter’s journey to Haiti coincides with another catastrophic earthquake

Reporter’s journey to Haiti coincides with another catastrophic earthquake
When the earthquake and tsunami hit Japan on Friday, I was in another small island country seeing firsthand how long it takes for countries to recover from catastrophic natural disasters.
Read more on The Oakland Press

The Ironman Of Haiti

The Ironman Of Haiti

I want to write to you today about a dear friend of mine and fellow Brother in Christ Jesus, Stanley Stankovich. Stan is a deacon at our local Baptist Church and it has and will continue to be my honor to know and to love him both in and out of Christ.

He is everything a faithful God loving, God fearing man should be and I can only aspire to be half the Christian testimony he is on a daily basis. He is a deacon’s deacon, ministering to God’s people with both love and humility and a heart for those less fortunate than himself.

Let me tell you about that testimony if I may. Stan has a heart and love for the people of Haiti like no one I’ve ever seen and is one of our local missionaries to Haiti. Through the Independent Gospel Missions (IGM), he runs a ministry called the Faith Cometh by Hearing Ministries which encompasses working with and assisting the national pastor, missionaries, and local church through: Short term mission trips, Discipleship, Evangelism, Bible Distribution, Orphan Assistance and sending pre-programmed solar powered radio’s which are tuned to a local Haitian Gospel Channel.

The closer he has gotten to God and the people of Haiti, the harder the devil has tried to thwart his efforts. After one particular mission trip, his son was stricken with two different viral infections that left him near death, a granddaughter with cervical cancer at the ripe old age of nineteen, a brother who was near death and spared to only be told now he has less that 6 months to live, and his faith never wavered once that God’s will would be done and he praised God for His greatness and continued to pray for his Haitian brothers and sisters in Christ including the various local witchdoctors he would run into.

He and his wife Shirley have put countless hours and miles on promoting his Faith Cometh by Hearing Ministry in an effort to make people aware of the conditions in Haiti and the plight of the locals so we here in the states could better understand their hardships and what they were up against.

Stan never left his second love, his home church and tending to God’s people in his capacity of deacon. He welcomes and visits all newcomers to our church, runs a visitation ministry which I’m blessed to be a part of, takes care of his fellow deacons with various ailments by going to their home and helping out with chores that need to be done, and he is our churches supplier of candy to the children who always ask him about Jesus which he’s more than happy to discuss with anyone regardless of their age.

Recently, Stan, against a cardiologist’s advice went to Haiti to help distribute radios even though his doctors warned him of impending heart failure – the people of Haiti needed him and he went. I was with him when he got back and had to go the hospital for a heart cath .. At the time, everything seemed fine but, as he was helping one of our local deacons who himself was recovering from heart valve surgery; he began to feel not like himself – tired, out of breath and run down.

He would learn that he had to have heart valve replacement and that he would be out of service for several months. I remember him crying when he first heard the news of the Haitian disaster and seeing him solemnly learn of the second quake. His heart poured out for his beloved Haiti but the Ironman of Haiti was temporarily being sidelined, the only thing slowing him down was his own near death experience.

Our church sent missionaries over in November of last year to help build benches for the people to sit on during church. The quake damaged the building so severely the pastor was afraid to go inside and recover the new benches. He informed us however that he and his congregation had a place to go and worship as a local witchdoctor and his village donated their worship facilities because they wanted to learn more about this Jesus. They wanted what other of their people had and had come to a man of God to get fed the Word.

What this all has taught me and many others of my fellow believers is to never underestimate the power of the Almighty to turn tragic events into witnesses to His glory and that He will always use those who are faithful to Him.

I’ve no doubt that God will heal Stan quickly as He has much more work for him to do and wants him back in Haiti as soon as possible. As a general rule, Stan is a man of quiet stature not wanting to draw attention to himself but have everything focus on Calvary and he has been very successful at this.

If you would like to donate to the Haitian Faith Cometh by Hearing radio ministry, you can contact Stan and Shirley at: deacondad1@aol.com. I’m sure they’ll be happy to hear from you, and tell you about their ministry, and tell you about the beautiful people that are Haiti.

Since writing this article, Haiti has 250,000 dead, and instead of holding their annual Madi Gras, The President of Haiti called for 3 days of prayer and fasting. Over one million people showed up at the rally, 3000 proclaimed Christ as their personal Savior and of those saved, 101 were confirmed witchdoctors!

We live in a pretty comfortable country all things considered. Do you know Jesus? If not, why not? People who wait until the eleventh hour to get saved end up dying at ten thirty – don’t be one of those people!!

God patiently waits on those who seek Him. If you’re unsure of your relationship with our Father and with His Son Jesus Christ, contact me. Together, we’ll seek guidance from the Father to eliminate those things which are interfering with your walk with God.

Dr. Brothers is an Independent Christian Minister with Doctorates in Biblical Studies and Divinity He is also a motivational speaker and writer and may be reached at dr_chas_brothers@msn.com 

Question: Do Churches Do Anything To Help Haiti In This Disaster? Yes & Yes (Two Examples And More) By Peter Menkin

Question: Do Churches Do Anything To Help Haiti In This Disaster? Yes & Yes (Two Examples And More) By Peter Menkin

By Peter Menkin

This writer entered into a discussion with an acquaintance friend in San Francisco’s Bay Area, and the surprising question Does the Church do anything for Haiti, donate money or such to help with the disaster?

How shocking. Of course, churches of various denominations make donations of various important kinds in money, aid, direct help, and even in action for larger economic questions. Though my acquaintance and this writer had neither time nor other mutual interests to enter into a fuller conversation, this article is an attempt to name just two ways Haiti is helped by churches.

Needless to say, shocked by my acquaintance’s ignorance, it occurred to me that others might not realize that so many Christians make an effort of large measure to help those in need experiencing and living with a natural disaster. Haiti is a significant focus of this kind of activity and concern. Organized religion does and has responded.

The Presbyterian Church USA has a hospital in Haiti and just recently that denomination announced: “Hôspital Sainte Croix (Holy Cross Hospital) and an affiliated nursing school in Léogâne, Haiti, have been approved to receive a 0,000 grant from Louisville-based Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA).”

In a specific way, denominations work together. The grant request was sent to PDA, and the much-needed funds were approved within two hours. The hospital and nursing school are ministries of the Episcopal Diocese of Haiti and have been a major focus of Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) mission in Haiti. Léogâne is near the epicenter of the Jan. 12 earthquake and both facilities sustained serious damage.

Here is a quote from the Presbyterians:

“We’ve been told by our Episcopal partners in Haiti that despite the damage, the nursing school began operating as a makeshift hospital within a half-hour of the quake,” said Randy Ackley, PDA coordinator. “In addition, nursing students have established 10 first-aid stations around the main part of Léogâne. The people on the ground are working hard to help one another and this grant is one way we can support their live-saving efforts.”

News media have reported that 80 to 90 percent of the buildings in the main part of Léogâne were destroyed. The PDA grant will support electrical power and distribution needs, water and sanitation facilities, fuel for generators and vehicles, and salaries for local staff involved in the cleanup.

This is specific, ongoing, hands-on, on-the-ground and at-the-scene help that includes significant coordination and work and a significant sum of money.

Gifts by congregations and members sent to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) for response to the earthquake in Haiti total more than .7 million through Jan. 29, according to ELCA Treasurer Christina Jackson-Skelton. Nearly 16,000 individual gifts have been sent to the ELCA, she said.

Politico-Economic matters are being raised by churches, and The World Council of Churches (WCC) recently joined with their many church voices to request cancellation of Haiti’s foreign debt. They say:

An “immediate and full cancellation” of Haiti’s foreign debt would be “only an initial step”, as the quake-stricken country needs a broader “plan to support recovery, poverty eradication and sustainable development”.

In fact, as part of the January statement, general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit has called on the international community to cancel Haiti’s foreign debt.

The WCC press statement offers a genuine stance of economic reform of this kind of aid, in a concerted effort by its members to take action on the world stage:

In addition to debt cancellation and short-term emergency relief, Haiti needs “reconstruction and sustainable development in the medium and long term.” But “any financial assistance should come in the shape of grants, not loans that would burden the country with more debt”, the WCC statement says.

Haiti, the most impoverished nation in the western hemisphere, is also a heavily indebted country. In spite of having had some 1.2 billion US dollars of foreign debt written off last June by international financial institutions, the country still owes some 641 million US dollars to multilateral banks and countries. This year Haiti is scheduled to pay some

10 million US dollars to the International Monetary Fund.

 As a caption to the picture of a woman feeding a child in this story, WCC offers a strong remark: “Obliging Haiti to make debt payments at the expense of health care, education and other critical social programmes is illegitimate.” The photo is by Paul Jeffrey/ACT.

In the second picture is seen: A survivor of the earthquake engaged in cleanup efforts in the Port-au-Prince neighbourhood of Belair. Photo: Paul Jeffrey/ACT.

The World Council of Churches is a fellowship seeking unity, a common witness and Christian service. The WCC brings together 349 churches, denominations and church fellowships in more than 110 countries and territories throughout the world, representing over 560 million Christians and including most of the world’s Orthodox churches, scores of Anglican, Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist and Reformed churches, as well as many United and Independent churches. While the bulk of the WCC’s founding churches were European and North American, today most member churches are in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, the Middle East and the Pacific.

As an end note, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America reports, The Haitian people are “living with hope,” says Louis Dorvilier, a member of the churchwide staff of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).  He said despite many difficulties for
survivors of the Jan. 12 earthquake, Haitians living in temporary shelters can be heard singing and worshipping — similar to eyewitness reports of other ELCA members in Haiti in the days after the disaster.

 

Addendum:

This series of facts on Haiti is published by WCC:

 

Population

8,549,254

Surface area:

27,750 km2

Capital:

Port-au-Prince

GNI per capita:

400 US$

Classification:

Least developed country

Languages:

French

Creole

Religions:

Christian: 96.00%

Spiritist: 3.00%

Other: 1.00%

Christianity:

Catholics: 6,628,000

Protestants: 1,607,500

Anglicans: 115,000

Independent: 479,900

(double affiliation)

 

 

Peter Menkin, an aspiring poet, lives in Mill Valley, CA USA (north of San Francisco). My blog: http://www.petermenkin.blogspot.com