Lately I’ve been getting asked, “Are you going back to Haiti this year?”
The short answer, yes. I hope to bring a tiny group to Haiti this June, if God allows. And, if you want to give to that endeavor, that information is at the end of this blog. Mostly, this year especially, we covet your prayers. The place is a mess.
But, if our missionaries can live there, I suppose we can go for 10 days. We will rely mostly on the recommendation of our missionaries in Port-au-Prince shortly before the trip to make our GO or STAY decision. Here is some information to bring you up to date. For some odd reason, the U.S. news isn’t big on giving Haitian news.
The “AND” Mess
1: No Prime Minister. Haiti President Jovenel Moïse just picked Acting Prime Minister Jean Michel Lapin, to lead the government. (The president is more like a vice-president, but not exactly. Google it, that’s all I know) Parliament still has to affirm the nomination. AND It’s the third government in two years. AND Lapin has been acting as PM for just a month. AND The last PM lasted for six months. It’s not great job security.
2: Financial problems: Last year Haiti hit a record $350 million budget deficit. That doesn’t sound like much by US standards, but then Haiti only has 11 million residents. AND This year they look to hit a $450 million budget deficit. That makes the US debt look responsible. AND Lapin needs a budget ASAP, or Haiti could lose $100 million in international aid. AND some folks with extreme creativity found a way to embezzle around $2 billion through the Venezuela oil program. You can’t make this stuff up.
3: The UN is leaving. When I’ve been there, folks liked to call them the U-Nothing. Maybe, but it sure made me feel safer when I saw their white Toyota Land Cruisers, or heard a helicopter flying overhead. Made me jealous too, those are cool Land Cruisers! The UN was around before the earthquake, they seem to be everywhere after the earthquake, and seemed as nonexistent last summer. AND They plan to be totally gone by October. I believe their timing is just before yet another election. Why is that?
4: No Petro, no life. Electricity has always been a rare luxury when it happens to come on, but now there are lines to buy petro for cars and generators. The gas isn’t being delivered because the government that owns the stations, owes the gas suppliers. 95 degrees and humid is one thing with a generator powered fan blowing on you at night, it’s enough to make you riot with the only breeze coming from mosquitoes.
5: Enough already: Inflation is at 17%, AND unemployment over 50%. The people have had it. AND Since December, there have been over 200 protests government, business, and school shutdowns; AND a Level 4 travel warning from the US State Department, simply stating, “Level 4: Do Not Travel. Last update April 9, 2019.”
But all these problems are only symptoms. There is a failed 200-year-old system of corruption and dysfunction. As one young Haitian man said to me a dozen years ago, “We sold our souls to the Devil, and we’ve been living in Hell ever since.”
I believe the island could flip. Not flip-over because it is heaver on one side, but turn from selfishness and corruption to unselfishness and redemption. Jesus died to redeem people and cultures. Even our planet groans for the day of redemption (Romans 8:19-23). Even before the earthquake, our missionaries and others were educating children and youth in a culture with no public education. Catholics and Baptists, Nazarenes and Mennonites have been sharing their faith, language, morals, standards, and education for some time now. One child from Compassion International has made it into Parliament.
If the nation needs those with good skills in French, English and Creole; if it needs leaders with good math and science backgrounds, then there is really one clear place to look. For the most part, the up and coming educated will be educated with a foundation in Christ. AND That can change any culture.
OK, if you want to help me go, please pray. If you want to financially help, that’s cool to. But, truth is, I’ll go either way. The price this year is $1500. We’re making sure to get tickets with insurance in case things change last minute.
To give go to AnchorPoint Church online giving app by clicking here. The page should look like this.
Yes, I know – it’s an extremely ugly page. But it’s secure, and cheap for the church.
Just fill it out like normal, no need to “Login or Register,” with this exception. Where it says “Message” write “Dan Cooley Missions Trip” in the box. Otherwise the church may spend it on the Pastor’s Ferrari Fund.