Taking a Break

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Road Runner, the coyote’s after you.
Road Runner, if he catches you you’re through.
Road Runner, the coyote’s after you.
Road Runner, if he catches you you’re through.

Do any of you remember the cartoon “Roadrunner?” Maybe I’m giving away my age by asking this question, but lately I’ve been identifying with him more and more. Have you ever noticed his feet never touched the ground until he came to a standstill? Well, it seems our feet have barely touched the ground either after such a busy year. Because of this, I am finally getting around to updating this post.

Prit, John, and I are back in North Carolina after a very long and fruitful year in Haiti. We have been blessed with many visitors, had a brand new kitchen built and are thrilled to see our feeding program up and operating once again. Thanks to Richard and Linda Baker who teamed up with the wonderful ministry of Orphans Promise, they have made a dream come true and provided a year’s supply of food for our students. Please check out the video of their visit on mine or Prit’s Facebook page. If you’re not a Facebook user, click here and enjoy watching the fruits of their labor this year.

Unlike the Roadrunner, who never seems to tire, we have been weary and in need of some serious rest. In addition to the many blessings that have come our way, there has also been the constant burden of making payroll for all our churches, schools, and  Bible institute. For the majority of our Haitian brethren, they are still living “hand to mouth” and the needs of so many around us have serviced to make us feel like we’re running on empty. In spite of the tremendous progress that has been made in other areas, we have had to let people go and scale things down to the bare minimum. One of the most difficult decisions an employer has to make is to tell his employees that their services are no longer required, especially knowing that the faithful work they have done for years has helped to sustain not only them alone, but their families. For this reason, Rehoboth Ministries greatly values the faithful and generous support that is given by our supporters.

Having said all that, it is great to be stateside again and we’re already beginning to feel rejuvenated. Sunday, we celebrated the memories of those who died for our great nation at Enon Chapel in Jacksonville, North Carolina. Believe me, for anyone living in a fourth world country for the greater part of the year, it doesn’t take long to see the stark difference between how well things function here in our own country as opposed to Haiti. Just the fact that I’m typing at this moment and enjoying an internet signal which is not going to fail me is one of the many comforts we enjoy when we get back home. So, we acknowledge all the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives to make the United States the great country that it is.

Now that you know that we haven’t fallen off the ends of the earth, we ask your prayers for us. Our summer will be short-lived since we have a medical team coming to set up clinic in July. As of July 7th, we will already be on our way back to Haiti. We are greatly looking forward to their visit, but in the meantime we’ll let the Roadrunner do all the running while we take a break!

Bible School

In regard to John’s last post on this website, Funding the Future, we have already had a positive response from some of our readers. Three of our twelve students will be able to attend Bible school next fall without shouldering the heavy burden of tuition. This will, in turn, lift a huge weight from our shoulders in paying the salaries of our professors. Would you like to help support a future leader of Haiti for a year? It only costs $20 a month or $240 per year.

Please note that our students will still be responsible to purchase their books and any other materials. We believe they should own as much responsibility as possible for their own education. We also believe one has more respect for his schooling if he plays an active part in some way and that this helps him maintain his dignity.  Your gift can make all the difference in a young man (or woman’s) life!

Meanwhile, we look forward to seeing many of you and reminiscing together upon all the good things the Lord has done for us this past year!

Funding the Future

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This post was written by our son John. It is cross-posted from his blog, BacktoHaiti.com.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” —Matthew 28:19a

Jesus’ command to make disciples drives everything we at Rehoboth Ministries do in Haiti. We believe that Haiti will never be healthier than the Haitian church. The church in Haiti, in turn, will never rise higher than the level of its leadership. As such, our Bible training institute is at the heart of what we do. Haiti is a country where the Gospel has often gone “a mile wide and an inch deep.” Too often, missionaries have majored on evangelism and mercy ministry to the neglect of the local church. As such, Haitian believers can be woefully under-taught. (This semester, for example, a student of mine who has attended an evangelical church for years was genuinely surprised to learn that Christians have always believed that Jesus was God as well as man.)

As I wrote in February, however, this has been an exceptionally difficult year in the life of our Bible institute. In contrast to previous years, most of our students have been unable to pay their school dues. As a result, Rehoboth Ministries has had to subsidize most of the teachers’ salaries, stretching a ministry budget that even on a good day doesn’t have much give. This isn’t necessarily our students’ fault. The declining value of the Haitian gourde (from 42 to 47, relative to the U.S. dollar, since I moved back in August 2013), coupled with the rising cost of living can make our school’s annual tuition of 9,000 gourdes per year (about $189 USD at the current exchange rate) a steep hill to climb. Every year, the money is worth less. Every year, things cost more.

We don’t like seeing our students go into debt in order to receive Biblical training. As such, we would like to create a series of need- and merit-based scholarships. For $20 per month ($240 per year), you could cover the annual cost of tuition and books for one student. Scholarships could serve as a powerful incentive to academic excellence as well as touching an economic point of need. The availability of scholarships could also give our school (which has twelve students at present) the opportunity to attract more students. Sponsoring a scholarship is easy to do. It can be done in one of two ways:

  1. Mail a check to: Rehoboth Ministries, P.O. Box 8222, Fayetteville, NC 28311. Make sure to write “BIBLE SCHOOL SCHOLARSHIP” on the check. (Due to the fact that PayPal takes a 3% cut of all online donations, we would prefer you use this option if possible.) One hundred percent of what you give will go to covering students’ books and tuition.
  2. To donate online through PayPal, click here, then click the yellow “Donate” button. Enter the amount you would like to give, then tick the box to make your donation a recurring payment.

Over the next few weeks, I will be posting videos of Bible school students sharing about how God called them to ministry, their experiences at our school, and their hopes for the future. I will also be in the United States for most of the summer (May 19 — August 16). If you are interested in speaking to me personally about this, please leave a comment on this blog or send me an e-mail (adams.john@gmail.com). I would love to hear from you!