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« on: March 22, 2006, 03:55:59 AM »

Missionary Family Takes God's Love and the Gospel Message to Haiti

by Allie Martin
March 21, 2006

(ChristiansUnite.com) - - A missionary to Haiti says the instability of that nation is having a big impact on outreach to the Haitian people.

Anne Kendall, her husband, and their six children have served as missionaries to Haiti for the past four years through a Tupelo, Mississippi-based ministry called Global Outreach. The Kendalls are part of a four-family team that works to meet the physical and spiritual needs of those in and around Haiti's capital of Port Au Prince.

According to Kendall, political instability along with severe poverty in Haiti has actually resulted in many individuals coming to Christ. "We see the average Haitians finally beginning to understand, those that are in the church, that indeed it is only God that they can depend upon," she says, "because the government has let them down for so many years."

Haiti is the poorest nation in the Western hemisphere, the mother and missionary notes, and the average life span there is 45 years. "Most of those people have seen nothing but turmoil in their young lives," she says, "and they're understanding that it's down to the knees and looking up toward heaven -- and that is what's going to change their lives."

For years, Kendall says, short-term workers have been a big help as Christian missionaries sought to meet the Haitians' immense spiritual and physical need. "Short-term ministry is a huge ministry in Haiti," she explains, "as it gets people out of their comfort zones and on the field in a quick manner. It's easier than, say, traveling to Africa or some of those other places."

However, the Global Outreach worker says recent instability in the Caribbean country has forced the ministry to curtail its short-term missions trips. "We've had to curb those," she adds, "and really have only had people who ... might have worked there before and [could] bring back teams."

Kendall says the volatile situation in Haiti creates a number of hazards. For the missionaries, primary concerns are "safety and health," she points out; and, in particular, "health is a huge issue for all of the missionaries in Haiti, especially on our field."

About 80 percent of the people in Haiti practice a mix of Catholicism and voodoo. The rest are Protestant. The original vision of Global Outreach's Haiti Mission was for a conference center ministry to reach people with the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

However, Global Outreach's Haiti ministry has expanded over the years to other areas, including feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, providing education, and doing community development through projects, medical clinics, and water well installation and maintenance. Throughout these various outreaches, the ministry's central objective continues to be the spread of the gospel and sharing of the love of Christ.

Missionary Family Takes God's Love and the Gospel Message to Haiti

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