“Epaphras…is always wrestling in prayer for you,
that you may stand firm in all the will of God,
mature and fully assured.”
Colossians 4:12 (NIV)
It’s now Day 30 since Hurricane Matthew struck SW Haiti, and two weeks since the heavy rains caused severe flooding. Whatever Matthew did not destroy, the rains from above and the flood waters from below did. ESMI is still counting, and so far, of the 124 churches planted, 25+ were destroyed. Of the 9 children’s villages (orphanages), 7 were severely damaged. The number is staggering. The dollar figure needed to rebuild the 7 villages and the 25+ churches is well over $2 million US. An unbelievable number for this small ministry. But we serve a great God, and if He sees it fit to rebuild, then somehow, some way, we can trust Him to provide the resources.
As we write, we have several ministry partners who will be having significant meetings later today to request funding on rebuilding villages and/or churches. They have asked for special prayers. Over the next few days, ESMI will be sending out a list of the 25 churches to long time ministry partners. Pray with us for God’s continued provision. In the last 7 days, funding for 5 has been promised. To God be the glory!
Here is a video of the church in Cote de Fer, Bonbon, that was totally destroyed.
Several medical clinics were done in this church. The first medical clinic done here, in 2012, resulted in two church plants and four more the following year. I, Sharon, asked Dony why was this building destroyed so badly? He reminded me that most of the buildings would have survived if the first two hours of Hurricane Matthew was all they experienced. But it was the tail of the hurricane, a strong category 4 (almost a category 5), that went on for six long hours. This is what shredded iron bars like paper and pounded cement blocks to dust. Also, the Bonbon church is the only concrete building on a hill, and like most of our churches in villages, the only concrete structure for miles. There were no other such buildings to buffet the forceful winds. For example, in the photo below, this church/school in Lundi, Jeremie, was made with steel bars (blue bars) and the force of Matthew’s winds twisted them like cords.
Here is the remains of two of ESMI seminary students’ who are the significant leaders in planting the other churches. Their homes were simple and small but took years for them to build. Now it’s all gone.
As Dony toured the Bonbon region, destruction was all around. That day was spent giving out tarps that Samaritan’s Purse had provided.
Update on Medical and Solar Team
Tuesday, November 1, the medical team finished their second day at the Emmanuel Children’s Village serving more than 200 people from the Chateau community.
Wednesday, November 2, the team served at the Baptist church in downtown Jeremie and saw more than 300 people.
The solar installation team has been working hard at the Lundy Children’s Village. Their trip was planned long before the hurricane struck. The team still wanted to come and install whatever they could to provide light for the children. Thankful for their hard work.
Like Epaphras, many of you are wrestling with us in prayer for the Church in Haiti. Thank you! It means a lot to know that you are praying with us and for us. This is God’s work and we need Him to make it continue!
ESMI is recognized by the IRS as 501c3 not-for-profit organization. All gifts are tax-deductible. You can donate online DONATE NOW at: https://www.esmihome.org/donate/sponsor-a-project/disaster-relief/ ; or send a check to: El Shaddai Ministries International, Inc. c/o The Keyes Company, 2121 SW 3rd Avenue, Suite 601, Miami, FL 33129, Memo: Hurricane Relief.