your cares on Him; for He cares for you. 1Peter 5:7
Last FridayPastor Massenat was called into a meeting by one
of the pastors and a missionary who are overseeing the construction of the new
orphanage site for Haiti Children’s Home. The meeting was about Nivard Holiness Church
being on the front corner of the property where the new orphanage is being
constructed. Pastor Massenat was asked
to remove the church immediately but not later than 30 days as to not impede
their progress with construction.The
two men went on to explain that if we didn't have a location for the church
that we needed to tear the church down because the funding for the new
orphanage has come in more quickly than was expected and the construction is
moving forward at a very quick speed. While this is very positive for them and
for the children and we praise the Lord for them; it presented a difficult
situation for us.We knew that at some point the church would
have to be relocated but we were not expecting it so soon. We went to prayer and contacted several of our faithful
prayer partners to join us in prayer.We
did not have the funds to purchase any property and we didn’t have the funds to
rent anything right now.We sincerely
did not know how the Lord was going to work it out but it was our prayer that
we would be able to move immediately and not wait for the 30 days.
Friday afternoon Pastor Massenat and his pastor friend,
Pastor Jerome we on with their plans to visit homes; they were able to pray
with several people.Friday evening a
prayer service was held at the church like usual.
Saturday morning Pastor Massenat called the people of the
church together and explained that we needed to relocate the church as soon as
possible.He explained that it was his
goal to move it before next Sunday.He
asked the people to join in prayer and help find land to rent for the church.The people voiced their support and asked
that we not consider closing the church.They said they would help but we did not know what this meant.One lady in the church came forward and offered
to rent us a piece of property but we didn't know the price.A man said the church could gather for
worship under the trees in his front yard temporarily and the wood, tarp and
tin from the church could be stacked in his back yard.We saw things coming together but there was
still so much to be done.
The response of the people at the church has been
overwhelming; very positively overwhelming.We could have never anticipated the outpouring of support we are
receiving from our precious church people through this time of transition.Here the church is not yet one year old and
the people are so dedicated.
Sunday morning service went on a usual.Two people had requested baptism so early
Sunday a baptism service was held at the local river prior to the regular
morning service.Pastor Massenat
announced that Sunday evening would be the last service held in the little
church and future services would be under the neighbor’s trees in his front
yard.Sunday closed with a bitter
sweetness; bitter due to the uncertainty but sweet because we know God is
faithful, two new converts had publicly professed faith in Him through
baptism and what the Lord had worked out already.
Yesterday morning, Pastor Massenat was not even out of the house yet
(5 miles from the church which means someone either had to walk or pay a taxi
to get to him and for the poor people of the church this was a huge sacrifice)
when a knock came on the door and he was summoned to the church.When he arrived he found several people from
the church already hard at work.People
of all ages, children, teens, adults and elderly had gathered since day break
to start the hard work of clearing a place for the church; a field full of
weeds and thorns but they were busy clearing it to make a place for their
church.Another group was at the church
busily uprooting the humble tree stump benches to be transported.A group of some of Haiti poorest, many with
not a bite of breakfast but willing to do whatever they could to protect their
church and keep the ministry going. When Pastor Massenat walked up, the lady who had offered to
rent the property said, "Pastor you can use the property now; you can pay
me the rent as soon as you can.We can't
let the church suffer.We want you here with
us; we want the church to go forward. You can put the church up right
away."Pastor Massenat could not
really find any words to answer her or express his gratitude for what she was
doing.What a sacrifice.That field represents the food that would
feed this woman's family over the next months and she was willing to make the
sacrifice so the Lord's work can go on; willing to trust that she would receive
the rent in time to care for her family.The man who had offered his front yard under the trees is a carpenter
and he was busy at the church, dismantling the things he built less than a year
ago so he could transport them to the new location (everything had been built
secured into the ground to keep them from being stolen).
By noon yesterday, a large area had been cleared at the new
location to allow the church to be put back up.Pastor Massenat had nothing tangible to offer in return; the people
were hungry, they were thirsty, the sun was hot but they didn't let that
discourage them.Pastor Massenat stood
in amazement as he watched them break for 'lunch' and quietly walk to a stack
of sugar cane that one of the men had cut from his nearby field.This was to replace their main meal of the
day, a stick or two of sugar cane and right back to work.Finally, Pastor Massenat was so overwhelmed
by the generosity and will of the people that he stepped way to call and tell
me what was going on.I listened and
then the tears came and still do as I write this.The sacrifice, the love, the desire of these
people to keep the ministry moving forward is amazing.Most of them have not been saved very long
most of them just within the last year since the church has been there but already they have
caught a vision to serve and give all they have to the Jesus.
Please keep these dear people in your prayers and the future
of the church; please help us pray about the $600US needed to pay for the
Pastor Massenat flew back to Haiti on July 4th and will be there for 6 weeks. When he first arrived he found his mother very ill with malaria and had to rush her to the doctor the following morning. She is recovering and is doing much better. He also found our truck in bad repair and has spent a lot of time getting that worked on; finally last week the mechanic put a new engine in it so hopefully it will run much better now. Our truck definitely need your prayers as it really is not very healthy.
The remainder of his time there so far has been spent visiting church families and new converts and holding services. He has been very busy working out the legal process for our new ministry, RGM in Haiti. The Lord has really intervened and a lot of progress has happened already with the legal process. Please pray for Pastor Massenat as he continues to pursue legal recognition for RGM as a nation-wide charitable organization in Haiti. This process usually takes a year or more.
In the US, our local church, Hilltop Chapel has graciously agreed to partner with us and is receiving donations for the ministry. Donations can be mailed directly to Hilltop Chapel for Haiti Ministries at 11700 Spring Arbor Road Concord, MI 49237.
I am still in the US with Amanda and Melinda and her daughter, Massenda are still here as well. Melinda's pregnancy continues to go well; the baby is due mid-September. We plan to return to Haiti late this fall.
I would love to hear from you. I am on facebook under Patricia Smith or you can send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org
I am in the US at this time while the Ulysse family and I explore a new ministry vision and await the arrival of my new grandbaby in September. Pastor Massenat and Melinda expect their little blessing to arrive mid-September and then we plan to go back home to Haiti late November or early December. When the Ulysse family and I return to Haiti we will continue to help those in need. We will continue the ministry of Nivard Holiness Church and will provide nursing care as the need arises including the tiniest and most vulnerable newborns and premature infants. Our new ministry will operate under the name of Redemption by Grace Ministries (RGM) or in French "Mission Redemption par la Grace". Please look for our new website coming soon at www.redemptionbygraceministries.org We covet your continued prayers as we make this transition.
Specific areas in need of prayer are:
warriors who will give us spiritual covering on a regular basis
monthly financial support for our missionary families and ministry so we can continue ministering in
for the missionary house
for Nivard Holiness Church
permanent church building for the NivardHoliness
Financial donations are being received by:
Hilltop Chapel 11700 Spring Arbor Road Concord, MI 49237.
Please note that Haiti Children's Home continues to care for orphan and needy children. HCH was taken over by the Haitian based organization FONSOPED in January 2012 with the financial support of HCAS from Canada. Grandma Pat and the Ulysse family are no longer present at HCH and are no longer in charge of the administration at HCH.