(Jim Hollandsworth is Graystone‘s Executive Pastor.)
This past weekend, Dale Rector and I took a trip to Haiti. The purpose of our trip was to visit Jeff Anefils and his mission in the mountain village of Platana. Jeff and his family have been attending Graystone for about a year and a couple months ago he asked me to come down and see the work that God was doing in Haiti.
Jeff and his wife are Haitian refugees who came to the U.S. 24 years ago as a result of persecution in Haiti. They have four sons and for years Jeff was a teacher and a pastor of a Haitian church here in Atlanta. Four years ago, God called Jeff to go back to Haiti. God gave Jeff a vision for a church in the village where he was born that would be a beacon of light in a very dark place. Out of this vision, Jeff started a ministry called Voice of Christ in Haiti. Over the past four years, Jeff has started the church, as well as a school for about 200 children (some of whom walk 2 hours each way to get to school).
I wasn’t sure what to expect when we arrived in Port-au-Prince. I had seen on television the devastation of the earthquake last year, but nothing could prepare us for what we saw. Buildings are still in rubble from the earthquake, thousands of people are still living in tent cities – it was like a war zone. On our drive to Jeff’s village, we passed the mass grave where approximately 200,000 people who died in the earthquake are buried. 1 in 10 residents of Port-au-Prince died in the earthquake. The four hour drive to Jeff’s village took us up the most treacherous mountain roads I’ve ever seen. There is no running water or electricity in the mountains – definitely the most isolated place I’ve ever been in my life.
On Sunday morning we attended the church service. It was incredible to see these people worshiping God together. They truly have nothing in terms of material possessions. They trust God to provide everything for them. After church, Jeff showed us around the mission and the school. The mission owns about 50 acres of land and Jeff has a dream of using the land to expand the church, build a permanent school and start a medical clinic. His dream is that God would use this mission to transform his community with the love of Jesus Christ. Sound familiar?
Jeff travels back and forth between the U.S. and Haiti several times a year, doing everything he can to make ends meet and keep this mission going. It’s incredible what he is doing on such a small amount of money. I know that God is using this ministry to reach the people of Haiti. If you’re interested in supporting Voice of Christ financially, please send me an email – firstname.lastname@example.org. Please pray with me today for Jeff, for the people of Haiti, and that God will use Voice of Christ to transform that country with the love of Jesus.