When Partnerships become Tri-fold

On August 22, 2016 by Bethany

Today I wanted to share with you a little story about some special people I know in Duluth Minnesota and Miami, Florida! Just a little glimpse into one of the teams I helped consult this summer!

 

What do Duluth, MN, Miami, FL and Les Cayes, Haiti have in common? Genuine Partnership.

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Lakeview Covenant team with Jean Jean-Louis and his daughter Jasmine.

 

Back in 2013, a youth group from Lakeview Covenant Church in Duluth, Minnesota stepped out in faith to serve on a mission trip in Miami Florida with PPM.

Lakeview Covenant 2013 Mission Trip Journal

Their partnership was with Rehoboth in Miami Florida, led by Pastor Jean Jean-Louis. (Does that last name sound familiar? It should! This is indeed the Uncle of Almando and Cassie Jean-Louis, our great friends that we serve alongside in Haiti. I got to meet Pastor Jean back in 2012 while living in Haiti.)

On their first trip, the youth and adults from Lakeview invested in the church wholeheartedly, and the church gave back 100%. The youth from both churches connected and relationships were formed.

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Outside games with the older youth

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VBS for the community

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Installing a new basketball goal, Rehoboth is in a great spot in their community for the kids to come and play a game or two.

Then, in 2014, you may remember me heading to Miami to serve alongside my PPM friends there, since I was pregnant with Edison and couldn’t travel to Haiti due to Chikungunya. While I was there, I just so happened to get to serve alongside these two partnership churches as they geared up for their second trip together!

Lakeview Covenant 2014 Mission Trip Journal

It was such a blessing for me to get to serve alongside Pastor Jean and his family, since I had only spent a little time with him in Haiti while he was there visiting in 2012. It was renewing to spend time with Haitians and speak Kreyol, eat Haitian food and feel the warmth of their culture, while my heart was so heavy due to being out of Haiti for the summer.

But also, throughout the week, the leadership of Lakeview invested in me in a new way as well. They were so encouraging, passionate about ministry and kind – kind – kind. I can’t count how many long conversations we had together while I sat with my feet up inside the church.

This was the same week I met Sandy – and she spent the week ministering to me in her special way. It was one of those weeks you don’t forget, when it seems like everyone you came to serve, ends up ministering to you in deep and powerful ways.

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Pastor Jean and Luther, the group leader. Pastor Jean was presenting a collage made by the youth of the church.

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The men from both churches worked together to set up a new fence around the front of the property.

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Lots of Kids ministry!

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Trying coconuts for the first time

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Digging posts up for the new fence to go in

 

Fast forward to this year, Lakeview partnered with Rehoboth in a new way, desiring to go to Haiti and see their partnership’s home country and culture. It didn’t take asking twice for Pastor Jean-Louis to jump on board! The team began planning and fundraising, excited to be serving in Pastor Jean-Louis’ home country, WITH him.

2016 Lakeview Covenant Mission Trip Journal

I got the privilege of consulting Lakeview’s team and connecting them to their new partnership in Les Cayes, Haiti with a man named Pastor Joas. Pastor Joas has a few churches in the Les Cayes area that are booming with new members. However, they are in need of maintenance and construction work. It was a great fit for Lakeview and their team to come and help with construction, do kids ministry and serve relationally, alongside Pastor Jean, his daughter Jasmine and Pastor Joas’ community!

Another cool connection? Guess who their trip leader from PPM was? You guessed right – Almando!

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Almando, Cassie, Bityah and Oved Jean-Louis, our full-time missionaries and ministry coordinators in Haiti!

So this was a team from Duluth, serving in Haiti with their Haitian church partner pastor and his daughter from Miami, serving in a new community in Haiti while being led by the nephew of their partnership pastor in Miami!

Do we need a flow-chart yet?

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Pastor Joas’ Q&A session with the team

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Lakeview, with Pastor Jean and Jasmine in the front

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Pastor Joas’ wife and the cooks for the week LOVED to surprise Liz with a cake for her birthday!

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Heading to church as one in Haiti

Isn’t this the heart of Christ?

Isn’t this an incredible picture of His people joining together to impact the world?

I can tell you this, this story gets me excited and passionate about what God is up to.

Seeing this genuine partnership go deeper and delve into another (third) partnership, creating relationships with family members of their partnership and experiencing the culture and community of this country is so beautiful.

It is evident that the Lord is not finished with us and He is still at work in our world.

-Bethany

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