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CABARET, Haiti (FBW)—“When people come to us wecannot cross our hands” at the Cabaret Children’s Home, 30 miles north of Port-au-Prince, a Haitian worker there told the Jacksonville Baptist Association.
What Haitian worker Pierre Prinvil was saying, as interpreted by church and community director David Garret of the association, was, “When people come to us, we cannot cross our arms, meaning, we cannot turn them away.’ I got the visual of that. And he’s right.”
Updated Jan. 16 11:25 a.m. (EST)
WINTER GARDEN (FBW)—For Tim Grosshans, the silence at the other end of the phone spoke volumes. Fifteen-year-old Faith, the youngest of 17 teens on a mission trip to Haiti, had survived the 7.0 magnitude earthquake, but she was hardly capable of speaking.
JACKSONVILLE (FBW)—Churches across Florida rallied to the aid of Haitians after an earthquake came close to leveling the capital city of Port-au-Prince last week. Special offerings Jan. 17 proved an avenue for Florida Baptists to participate in caring for Haiti's impoverished residents.
"Empty your wallets," at the back doors of the church for the relief effort, Pastor Tim Passmore asked members of Woodland Community Church in Bradenton. The congregation of 1,600 collected more than $8,000 in three morning worship services, according to Passmore.
GRACEVILLE (FBW)—To say a picture's worth a thousand words is nearly too much for Jean "Junior" Jovin. He doesn't need pictures, although he's seen hundreds. The mental images are enough to cause the tears to flow.
Riveted to the television when he heard last week of the 7.0 magnitude earthquake in his native Haiti, Jovin, a 26-year-old college student, said he waited four long days to finally hear that his immediate family members survived the quake.
STUTTGART, Ark. (FBC)—Twenty dollars is all it takes to buy a 100-pound bag of rice to feed a family of four for "a long time in Haiti," according to John Sullivan, executive director-treasurer of the Florida Baptist Convention. He is spearheading the Convention’s efforts to get food to the earthquake-ravaged nation.
He should know.
Immediately after the disaster hit the impoverished nation, Sullivan purchased 21 tons of rice from a distributor in Stuttgart, Ark., and made plans to ship the rice to Miami in preparation for delivery to Haiti.
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (FBW)—Stepping outside a school to pray in Haiti's capital early this morning, Michael Petty almost lost his footing when a 6.1 magnitude aftershock rolled the ground beneath him.
It was just a hint of what hit the city a week ago when a 7.0 magnitude earthquake ravished the most densely populated parts of the city, toppling structures, ripping up roads, and killing hundreds of thousands in one of the most impoverished nations in the western hemisphere.
LEESBURG (FBW)—Florida and Alabama Baptists are working in partnership with the Florida Baptist Children's Homes to offer immediate care for 100 orphans from Haiti at the Convention's Lake Yale Baptist Conference Center in Leesburg.
The FBCH also has offered any other space available throughout its network of foster homes and residential care programs throughout the state, according to Jan. 20 statements.
MIAMI (FBW)—The earthquake that came close to leveling Haiti's capital city of Port-au-Prince Jan. 12 may spur a tide of refugees to Florida that could rival the 125,000 Cubans who came to the Sunshine State during the 1980 Mariel Boat Lift.
"Our people want them all," Miami Baptist Association Director of Missions Gary Johnson told Florida Baptist Witness, even while recognizing the challenge of caring for 100,000 newcomers.
CABARET, Haiti (FBW)—Even as the U.S. government readies to airlift thousands of refugees from Haiti to Miami and Southern Baptists are planning relief efforts throughout the hardest hit areas, Haitians outside of Port-au-Prince are looking at dwindling food supplies and wondering how long they will be able to hold on.
At the Cabaret Children's Home 30 miles north of Port-au-Prince, the Jan. 12 earthquake that rocked the nation also tore up a perimeter fence and knocked over everything on the property that wasn't fastened down.
CORAL SPRINGS (FBC)—"Radical, if not reckless” is how Pastor David Hughes described his church’s response to Haiti’s catastrophic earthquake of Jan. 12.
Other pastors reportedly were considering giving 10 or 20 percent of the offering receipts collected during the week of Jan. 17. But the pastor of Coral Spring’s Church by the Glades congregation said he could not find a peace with that percentage amount. So he continued to pray.
JACKSONVILLE (FBW)—The Florida Baptist Convention has produced two videos to seek support for its relief efforts in the aftermath of the Jan. 12 devastating earthquake in Haiti.
If you have ever lived through an earthquake, you will not soon forget it. For me, the recent Haitian disaster brought back childhood memories of the Great Alaska Earthquake of 1964. My family lived on an inlet coastline about 200 miles from the quake’s epicenter.
Earlier this month, an estimated 1,000 Coptic Christians gathered in Los Angeles to protest the killings of fellow Copts in Egypt a few days earlier.
JACKSONVILLE (FBW)—The home of Pastor T.L. Holton Sr., pastor of Peace Baptist Church in Branford, was heavily damaged in an early morning fire Jan. 11. Efforts are underway in Suwannee Baptist Association to clean up the site and to replace the pastor’s mobile home on his five-acre rural lot, according to Director of Missions Fritz Fountain.