Living Faith – many of you know that I have been part of the Global Mission Team’s HAITI TASK FORCE. In 2015, I traveled with a group of pastors, mostly from the Florida Bahamas Synod, to share in a week of teaching elders and deacons in Gressier, where the new ELH (Eglise Lutherienne d’Haiti) compound is located. Much of that was made possible by grants and aid received through the ELCA and FBS after the earthquake in 2010. Even with all that was accomplished, it was not able to be completed and plans were frustrated. However, we have continued to work side by side with Pr. Livenson, the President of the ELH, and have fostered some new partnerships.
One of those is now bearing fruit in a remarkable way: MABO (Movement and Action for the Benefit of Orphans) is a local orphanage (www.mabohomehaiti.org) that serves children whose parents are currently unable to care for them. Orel “Marco” Lisius, its founder, is a native of Port-au-Prince, and through a partnership with Advent Church (an ELCA Church, and a “Reconciling In Christ” Congregation located in Cedarburg, Wisconsin), have developed a remarkable program. In a new partnership, MABO will be utilizing the ELH compound in Gressier – they have just moved in! We are all excited at the possibilities that lie ahead. Their story continues below. Let us join in prayer of thanksgiving and anticipation for the children, staff, volunteers, and partners of this project!
MOVING DAY AT MABO
There were cheers and tears as the thirty some children of MABO pulled into their new home at Lutheran Center of Haiti in early August. The nine MABO Aurora Hospital and Faithbridge Church of Racine Volunteers had just spent several days in blistering one hundred degree heat and extremely high humidity cleaning, performing maintenance, and installing solar electricity in the brand new school building and temporary dormitory. The center is located about fifteen miles west of Port au Prince in the community of Gressier. It has a new six room school house. Three rooms are being used as a temporary dorm until the permanent dorm building, as funds are raised, can be finished.
As the Taptap (Haitian bus) rolled in loaded with the children you could hear their excitement rising, and as they departed the bus they broke into cheers of joy as they ran around the massive play yard. These children never had decent play space before. There wasn’t a dry eye in the group of volunteers, staff, and friends. Things like running water, toilets, showers, are all new to these kids and it will be interesting to watch the learning curve as they learn to use the new facilities.
Plans are now being laid to expand the school to include children from the community. Also in the future, are plans of opening a community medical clinic as there are no medical facilities in the community at the present time.
All this was made possible by, and with the guidance of, an “Amazing God” and assisted by people from all over the northern hemisphere, not the least of which is the congregation of Advent Church of Cedarburg. This was a new day and a remarkable milestone for the folks of Haiti, not only MABO, but The Lutheran Center, The Evangelical Lutheran church of Haiti (ELH), and the community of Gressier.
Please feel free to get involved as much or as little as you wish with the Haiti project. Ask the church office or any of the informal Haiti group participants at Church. Also, don’t forget to also ask about some of the trips to Haiti that are coming up in October, November, and some time between the last week in January 2018 and the first week in April. The 2018 trip dates are not firm yet and you can be part of planning this trip. It will be more of a sight seeing trip (as opposed to a fun work trip) with visits with the kids of MABO and a possible field trip with some of them and a look around Haiti with up scale lodging and meals. Yes, we will have the guiding and guidance of Marco or Esau. This is a new approach to seeing MABO and Haiti.
School starts in September!! Yea, Yea !!
The MABO Team