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February 2014
Dear Friends in Christ,
Last month John, Cliff and Kenny were blessed to host a small group in Haiti. They came to witness 3 couples who were getting married as well as visit the Merci Village. John was blessed to have his wife Diane, his son Jeff and grandson Harrison go down. Joining them were long time OSM friends, Alan and Jean Axtell, also from San Antonio. The group was not disappointed in the beautiful weddings. These brides and grooms were convicted about the need to be married after Cliff taught a marriage seminar at the church last fall. With the weddings we witnessed in October, this makes 7 couples who are now committed to one another before God, their families and friends. We praise the Lord for His work in the hearts and lives of these couples.
After the weddings, the group began building 8 more homes for families in need. Kenny and our family are very blessed to be a part of working at the beautiful Merci Village. A team of men were hired for each home built. While the men begin working, Kenny gathers all the materials. When they build homes, many local men are greatly blessed to have jobs. This allows them to provide food for their family during the building project.
When the building project was completed, John and Cliff returned home. Kenny remained to work on additional projects which will help families in the village. He worked on the generator and then began refilling cisterns for several homes. He and Lussade then went up the mountain to his home to get ready for another small group coming down.
Our daughter Sara, her husband Joel and a dear friend from our church, Lynn Purkiss went down to Haiti this month as well. Thanks to many of you, they were able to minister to needs by giving away food, Bibles, hygiene packs and mother/baby care packages. The day after they arrived, they met a very poor woman who lives in a tent with her infant (its twin died in January) and 2 small sons. Their hearts were deeply touched by her difficult circumstances, so they shared gifts and ministered to her. More gifts were shared with others, as they hiked in the mountains, meeting many kind, country families. They also visited the schools to be sure things are going well. As this newsletter is being written, they are still there. We are grateful for your gifts which are ministering to needs in Haiti.
Through OSM, you have provided a meal a day for the children who attend Pastor Marc's school in Carrefour (kar foo). He and his wife still live in the same building where they raised 12 children. Here they have school during the week and church each Sunday. The building is very small and is falling down around him. He has had up to 100 children attending school, but currently we have encouraged him to reduce the number to about 35-40. OSM is providing food and paying a teacher. We would like to tear down this existing building and rebuild a sturdy block structure for the school, church as well as living quarters for Pastor Marc and his wife. We would like to build it so that later it could have a second story. The dimensions are about 20'x40'. There is a small pathway to the road between a lot of very poor people who live in extreme poverty. Because of the great needs of the neighbors, carrying tools and materials in and out could be dangerous. It will need to be built by Haitian men for safety purposes. We hope to raise $25,000 for this building. Please join us in praying for this need to bless and encourage Pastor Marc so he can continue the ministry God has laid on his heart in this very troubled and poor area.
Please be in prayer with us about our upcoming medical team to Haiti, March 13-22. We still do not have a US doctor to go with us. A doctor would be a valuable addition to our team. Debbi and I will be going down March 7-25. Please pray for the team, the Haitians who will walk for miles to be seen and most importantly that Christ will be the center focus for the clinic. We plan to do Bible school, teaching and preaching the gospel as the patients wait to be seen and for the Jesus film to be shown in the evenings. Pastors and team members will be there to pray for and minister to the people who have needs. It will be an exciting and encouraging time for those of us who go. Though it is late, you can still join us. The conditions will be challenging, such as primitive tent camping, but the blessings will be worth more than a penthouse suite in a 5-star hotel. The cost is $1,400 per person plus airfare.
In Matthew 28, Christ gave us the mandate to make disciples throughout the world. Through OSM we believe it is our calling to minister through local churches helping them to make disciples within their congregations. During the past few years our monthly income has slowly decreased. Please consider joining those who financially support OSM. Prayerfully consider beginning a monthly contribution or, if possible, provide a more generous gift this month.
"In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" —Acts 20:35
We are very grateful for each of you, your prayers, support and encouragement!
Because of Christ,
The Kennedy Family