Monday, April 25, 2011

Why Haiti?, Why Now?

So, with this newly created blog it is fitting to answer a question right off the bat. You may ask why we are choosing to get involved with missions in Haiti and why are we doing so now. This first post is an attempt to answer those questions though I am sure we will elaborate on them in future posts.

Some of the Grace Baptist Church leadership has desired to reinitiate involvement of our church body in missions work around the world. Specifically, we desire to see our mission, summed up as Make Disciples, accomplished in our body. That means much more than just sending funds to those who are called to go but also means that missions is part of the response of our body in obedience as disciples. That said, we desired to find an opportunity in which we could send people who could set the tone and help lead us in our future discipleship efforts.

This spring, we had a conversation with one of our supported missionaries about partnership to take people from our church body on such a trip. That person (Jeff Sutton working with Great Commandment Ministries) suggested several locations for such a trip and also mentioned a desire, consistent with our own, to find a location outside of the U.S. that is closer than other opportunities on the African continent with which he was more familiar. So began the next part of the conversation.

You see, several months prior to this conversation, we were blessed to be joined by a young man from Haiti who was visiting some members of our congregation. This young man met these members of our congregation following the earthquake in Port Au Prince in January 2010 when they went to Haiti to do relief work. This young man's father is a pastor whose ministry oversees an orphanage, K-12 school, and has helped to plant five or more churches since the earthquake. As we became more aware of this connection, our missions leaders thought that this was an ideal location for a short term trip for our congregation in which we could partner with this ministry and develop our own people at the same time. In fact, it was ideal given the relative ease of travel, the immense needs of the ministry and people, and our desire to develop a longstanding relationship that could be mutually beneficial.

So, that is the short response to Why Haiti? Why Now? In future posts, we will include information about more of these specifics, who is this young man and his father, who is planning to go on this trip from our congregation, and what we are planning to do while there on this trip. We also want to use this blog as a forum to inform you about our activities in preparation for our trip this summer (dates are July 10-22) and what you can do to pray and support the efforts financially should God lead you to participate in that manner.

God bless,

Pastor Reid Kisling

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