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January 2022
Dear Friends in Christ,
This was a wonderful and a difficult month at the same time. We praise the Lord Jesus for His faithfulness to us, even when we are not faithful to Him. He loves us when we are unlovable and forgives us when we ask. He is truly a wonderful Savior! This month we praise Him for OSM's 24 year anniversary.
We are saddened to share that Dania, one of our precious little kinder students has passed away. Dania was only 4 years old. This news has broken our hearts. We were disappointed to not hear of her illness until she had already passed and there was nothing we could do. We’ve only heard she had a fever. There are not many clinics in that area and no basic first aid and medical knowledge at all. We have already been in the process of working to have all of our teachers attend a first aid class. This could be useful for the whole community. Although we don’t know all the details of Dania’s passing, the information we have seems to indicate she could have been treated fairly easily. Of course the teachers were not aware of how desperate her situation until she passed. Please pray with us for Dania’s family as they grieve. We pray that they will look to Jesus for comfort! As there is already a plan in the works for the teachers we also have several well stocked first aid kits on their way to Lussade & the school. The shipping has been backed up for quite some time so we are praying these arrive soon.
This month, Lussade has been able to go to the school a couple of times. The beginning of January it was difficult for him to go out because of roadblocks and trouble on the roads. He was finally able to get the food and teacher’s pay out to them. At that time, they discovered that the gardens have been ruined, some by animals eating the vegetables and some parents have stolen the plants and sold them. This was a frustration and we considered shutting it all down, however, it can take a long time for the people there to understand that they are hurting themselves. Also, we looked to Luke 5:31-32 which made us realize we are there for the lost, not the well. Therefore, we hope to replant and try again. In the meantime, we hope that Pastor Petit (Petty) can talk to the parents about what they are doing and how much the garden is meant to help the school and their children.
Toward the end of the month we had a large group go to the school. As usual, we had a prayer team pray for the trip. On their way out, they were stopped in Croix des Bouquet (Qua du Boo kay), and were not allowed to go any further. Out of nowhere, a man came up to them and showed them a way around the blocked road, they had never known of this way and never seen the man before. They believed it was an angel who helped them avoid problems, and we all praised the Lord for His hands of protection over them.
Lussade’s niece, Dr. Bertholat, and his sister, Pascale, who is a nurse, went out to do a check up on all the children. On the same trip, Lussade’s brother-in-law, Edgard and 2 friends from his church also went to distribute Bibles and share the gospel. Kenny used to go out with Edgard and do evangelism hikes, Edgard is very enthusiastic about witnessing. While out with the group, Edgard and his 2 friends led 2 people to Jesus Christ, and led 3 others in a prayer of repentance. We were very excited for them to be with the group. We plan to have Edgard join us in witnessing in that area more. The village, Brunette, has a lot of voodoo and superstitions and some even sadly intermingled in the church. It is very hard for the people to break free of this demonic hold, even Christians. It is fear based as the parents don’t want anything to happen to their children and families. Very sad, but we hope to bring more of the light of Jesus Christ into a dark place. It is easy for us to have trouble understanding how they can hold on to the voodoo, but a lot of witchcraft and harm can be put on the family of someone who comes to Christ. This is difficult to “stand alone” in a family or community.
The teachers remain busy with all their responsibilities with the children. It is great that they care to share the gospel with the children and to watch over them the best they can. With 7 teachers and 140 students, that makes for a busy day. We are hiring a soccer coach and have the names and sizes of children who want to play. We are also glad to make this available to the children as another avenue to play together. In Haiti, soccer is called football and they take the game very seriously. One of our families has asked to provide the jerseys for the teams, in honor of my (Debbi) cousin, Johnny McGovern. Johnny passed away in 2021 after a difficult battle with cancer, he was a wonderful high school football coach and a very fine Christian man. He left a huge impact on many people, and I am super excited for this to be happening!
A big thank you to all of you who encourage, pray for and support OSM! Your hearts are precious to us, we pray for you and your families.
Because Of Christ,