Matt Prather and Rose Perkins
Team Haiti, a short-term missions project of the Presbytery of Southern California, was led in 2017 by Rev. Matthew Prather, Pastor of Corona OPC, in Corona, CA, and Team Haiti veteran Rose Perkins from Prescott OPC in Prescott, Arizona. Here are their reports.
Team Haiti 2017 brought nine young people from six different states together in a common purpose – to assist OP Missionary Ben Hopp and his family in sharing the love of Christ and his Gospel to the people of Haiti. As it turns out, we had many opportunities to do just that!
Over 250 children attended VBS programs organized by Pastor Hopp and local leadership at three different churches, (one on the mainland, and two on the island of La Gonave). Several team members prepared and presented Bible lessons based on Children’s Catechism questions 72 – 79. Other team members focused on creating and implementing crafts which helped drive home the message of the Bible lessons. It was encouraging to see not only children, but also adult members of the churches listening to the lessons and participating in the crafts. We pray the Gospel found good soil in many hearts, and that the Lord will use our efforts to draw his elect unto himself.
In addition to the VBS programs, the team had opportunity to serve the Hopp family by way of several work projects, such as clearing debris and weeding. It was a joy for us to serve in this way. One of the great highlights of the trip was just getting to know the Hopps. From the moment we arrived, they made us feel like part of the family. Living with them for ten days gave us a chance to see first hand what it takes to serve on the foreign mission field, particularly in a developing country like Haiti. We left with the blessings of our fellowship together, a deeper appreciation for their work, and a sense of gratitude that we could serve alongside them, even for a short time.
Many thanks to all who faithfully supported the team through prayer. Your prayers were answered as we experienced the Lord’s help and protection from beginning to end. A special thank you to Pastor Chad Mullinix and the congregation at Holy Trinity OPC in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. They showed our team tremendous hospitality before our departure to Haiti, and ensured that the mission got off to a great start.
Dust. Mount Sinai. Peanut butter. Singing. Ten commandments. Duck, duck, goose.
A lot goes on at Vacation Bible School! Team Haiti 2017 did VBS at three different churches. The Haitian kiddoes had fun with crafts and got peanut butter everywhere at snack time. They played games with lots of dust flying, skirts swishing, and cheering for friends. But most importantly, over 250 Haitian kids heard the gospel of Jesus Christ. They learned about Mt. Sinai, the ten commandments, love for God & neighbor, and what it is to follow Jesus.
I am so grateful to the Hopps for inviting OPC youth to serve in Haiti… what a sweet blessing to see this missionary family. It was both encouraging and challenging to hear about their struggles and their victories, to see their love for the Haitian people, and witness their prayerful reliance on Christ to build His church in Haiti. Please keep this family and their ministry in your prayers! The Lord does answer! May He cause His kingdom to come on this small island.
Visit www.opcstm.org to learn more about short-term missions in the OPC!