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Wilson Haiti Newsletter April 2024


“…my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.

They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:20-23


 A Tragedy that Only God Understands

       As you have probably seen in the news, various parts of Haiti, particularly the capital (now 90% gang-controlled) continue to spiral downwards more rapidly. The police are fighting valiantly, and successfully, against repeated attacks on major institutions like the Presidential Palace and the central national bank.  However, only 3 of 28 hospitals continue to function in the capital, and many major businesses, universities, and government buildings – like the education and agriculture ministries and the national archives, -- have been looted and burned.  Five thousand prisoners were set free from various prisons amid 360,000 already displaced people. All in an incomprehensible attempt by gang leaders to “help” the poor and working classes by “ridding” the country of all wealthy citizens and all corrupt past politicians. The attacks on embassies, workplaces and homes of international workers have led to mass exodus of Haiti’s allies.  Meanwhile, 20% inflation (down from 49% inflation in January 2023!) and poor harvests mean that almost half the country faces acute hunger-- the worst levels of food insecurity in Haiti on record.


When and Why Wilsons Left Haiti

        We had always said that we would leave Haiti when MFI (Missionary Flights International) could no longer land at the grass strip 4 miles from HAFF.  So, during the 2-week period in which all their flights were suspended, we crossed into the Dominican Republic (March 13), flew to Miami, then traveled by car to Iowa. Though never in danger we felt anxious about making many last minute- connections in a Spanish-speaking country. But we saw God’s provision and timing in many ways, including the closing of the border for a couple days just 4 hours after we crossed.  

       Thankfully, MFI has resumed vital weekly flights to our area, which so far has remained free from gangs and violence.  Since we had planned to be in the US from mid-April to June anyway, we are keeping our June reservations to Haiti – if the country and our area are sufficiently secure!


   Us, Dr. Patricia Lyon and Pignon missionary  friends in the Santiago, DR airport  

                    

    

 We celebrated a moment of “joyful normalcy” in the wedding of a former IPB student             

God’s Mercies Seen at HAFF:

     For the first year in the last 3, HAFF started school on time, though we lost a couple weeks in March.  Each seventh grader received a French Bible for their twice-weekly Bible classes. Five additional 2022-23 Philo (13th graders) graduated in national make-up tests, bringing our number of graduates to 92% for last year. New students are maturing as they lead daily school devotions and are offered new leadership in local churches. Twelve trained volunteers still teach Christian health classes in 24 elementary schools, in 14 communities. A combined Haitian and American team of pastors introduced a new, multi-year intensive seminar for 12 pastors in local communities.


Painful, Unprecedented Challenges Facing HAFF 

     Yet even as our ministries continue to flourish despite Haiti’s national disaster, HAFF is facing a significant crisis in the US. In October donations suddenly dropped to a drastic degree, similar to some other American-based Haitian ministries around us. We have not had enough money to provide hot lunches regularly and are now looking at cutting some positions and wages of our very beleaguered staff, some of whom have worked with us for over 20 years.

     Please pray for new fundraising venues for us and for a miraculous turn around among previous donors.  If you can make a sacrificial gift at this time, it may translate almost directly into a family being able to eat – and perhaps maintain their hope of employment.


107 seventh graders receive their own Bible


Pastor’s Conference led by Three Haitian Pastors and an American


Is God still in Control? Biblical Answers from Suffering Christians in Haiti (and Worldwide)    

        Chapter 3 in Lamentations is a good read for those seeking to compassionately walk beside Haitian Christians as God allows the destruction of their private dreams and common homeland. There is such shock and grief: 13 “He pierced my heart, with arrows from his quiver…17 I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is. 18 So I say, ‘My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.’” Yet the Holy Spirit inspires their struggle to submit to the sovereignty of God: 38Is it not from the mouth of the Most High, both calamities and good things come?”

        In the tempest of tears and despair, grappling with both an incomprehensible world, and a sometimes-mysterious God, a still, small voice breaks into a tremendous liberating relief like sunlight piercing the darkest depths of despair. (Lam. 3:20-25) “My soul is downcast within me. 21 Yet this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: 22  Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 24 I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore, I will wait for him.’ 25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him.” 

     In our struggles Lord, may we be flooded with the love and joy and peace that fuels our Christian family across the world to face each new day assured that “Great is your faithfulness.” Please make our difference from the world evident enough that people will ask, “What is the reason for your hope?” May we reply with Your gentleness and respect. (1 Peter 3:15) 


Colin and Carla Wilson (colcarwil@protonmail.com)


Like us on Facebook: Haitian American Friendship Foundation (HAFF)

Address: Colin Wilson, 3170 Airmans Dr., Unit 1069 – HAFF, Ft. Pierce, FL 34946

         Contributions:  HAFF 2400 Edgelea Dr., Lafayette, IN 47909

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