Haiti Update - November 2015
by Vernon Giesbrecht
Unsettling Times In Haiti – Continuing on the theme of our October Update, the election process in Haiti is experiencing protests at the highest level and violence on the streets. The official results of the October 25 elections, seen as a first-round presidential election (54 candidates!), surfaced two leading candidates. The second-place finisher, Jude Celestin, is leading a group of eight, known as the G8, who threaten to force a transition government unless fraud is addressed and changes are made to the electoral council and police hierarchy. The G8 is calling for peaceful protests, but intimidation and manipulation are widespread. As of this writing, Celestin has yet to accept to participate in the December 27 presidential run-off against government-backed candidate, Jovenel Moise. PLEASE PRAY for Haiti during this volatile and sometimes dangerous time in its political history.
Double Harvest In Haiti – Where is Double Harvest during this unsettling time? First, we do not involve ourselves politically nor endorse any party or candidate. Second, while enjoying the goodwill of surrounding rural villages, our proximity to Port-au-Prince and its environs has left us open to elements of the population intent on using the unrest to their own destructive ends. Our Haitian staff has commented that, even prior to these elections, the mood of the people has been one of simmering frustration with years of unmet promises by the government to better their lives. We have therefore embarked on an expensive project to increase our security by constructing an 8 foot wall around key areas of our property and increasing the height of the wall surrounding our Medical Clinic which houses accommodations for visiting mission teams. Razor wire will top the wall and solid steel gates will replace open bar gates. Besides the guards in our employment, police protection will also be available at night while teams are on-site. While we have felt compelled to increase our security, it comes at significant cost. SPECIAL DONATIONS toward this project are welcomed!
The Ministry Continues – Meanwhile, our mission of ministering to the physical and spiritual needs of the Haitian people continues. The farm and greenhouses are in operation, as are the fish and chicken projects. A recent surgery team augmented the daily medical care by our Clinic staff, while the 500 students at our school look forward to a Christmas break. Daily morning devotions for employees and waiting patients, and required Bible classes in the school help keep the focus on ”the main thing”! The church meeting at our school promotes Christian growth and relationships through Children and Youth ministries and Family & Marriage Conferences. Also meeting at the school, a growing Bible Institute recently saw 18 students graduating with certificates in theology. OUR GRATITUDE goes out to those who partner with us in prayer and financial contributions in ”Sowing Seeds of Life” in the hard soil of Haiti!