We have reached a new chapter in our orphanage ministry. Our three oldest orphans, Shella, Mylande, and Robenson, have successfully completed high school and are ready for the university! All three have finished strong and are excited about their next challenge. For several years these three have indicated an interest in a medical career and now are in the process of making application to two universities in Port-au-Prince. We look forward to the day when they will have their university education completed and will use the opportunity God has given them to bring Him glory wherever He leads.
We have also recognized that some of our orphans are more inclined toward trades that don’t require a university education. We currently are in the process of moving Luckner, Franky, and Eder to Port-au-Prince. These are three of our older boys who struggle academically but have shown aptitude and interest in mechanics. Eder will be attending a mechanic school while Luckner and Franky will be working as apprentices in a mechanic shop. Again the goal is for each of our orphans to have the opportunity to be trained in a career so each one can become a self supportive citizen of Haiti as each makes a difference in the lives of other needy Haitians.
As we begin another school year (the seventh in our short history) we are again amazed by the numbers. We now have elementary schools in 27 villages with a total of 6808 students, which is about 1000 more children than last year. What a great opportunity to share the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ while meeting the educational and physical needs of these children! The school ministry also employs many Haitian people–183 teachers, 27 headmasters, 40 cooks, 27 wood gatherers for cooking fires and 27 water carriers.
It’s always with a bit of apprehension as we step out in faith to meet all these needs. We continue to trust God, believing He has called Starfish Ministries to reach out into these needy villages and believing He will supply all that is needed to accomplish the work there. We are simply His vessel, His hands and feet as we go to carry out His work. Thanks to all of you, our partners in this work. God is using your prayers and support to meet the needs.
Pastor Tim Johnson and I spent the last week of August in Haiti. Pastor Diogene invited Pastor Tim to share at a Haitian Pastor’s Conference. For three days 89 pastors met together at the LeXaragua Hotel for a physical and spiritual retreat. These pastors are really hungry for spiritual help and encouragement so that they can more effectively minister to their people. Many Haitian pastors have very little Biblical education and whenever they have an opportunity like this they are like sponges as they soak up the truth.
Please continue to pray with us concerning the following:
- Smailine’s health issues and the hurdles of getting her to the states for surgery.
- Pastor Diogene and Madam Diogene as they spend a couple of weeks in Florida with their children – a time of refreshment and relaxation.
- The last container we sent that still hasn’t cleared customs.
- Another evangelistic crusade in Bethel – more of the lost to respond to the salvation invitation.
- Wisdom and direction for educational ministry directors – Norius and Divingo.
- Sensitivity to the orphan children’s needs – education, careers, and transition from orphanage to PAP life.
Serving the Lord together,
Bernie & Sheryl Bovenkamp