ABCNJ and the Haitian Baptist Convention have taken the first steps in fashioning a cutting edge sister church relationship! Rev. Emmanuel Pierre, General Secretary of the Haitian Baptist Convention, along with Rev. Ronel Mesidor (a pastor from the Port-au-Prince area who also serves the Convention in its Development work), have spent the last two days (Friday/Saturday - June 22-23) in New Jersey. On Friday, they visited Baptist Camp Lebanon and spoke with our new summer camping staff.
Camp Director, Don Smith, led us on a tour of the property and then shared the inspiring story of the Green Cathedral.
On Saturday, a number of ABCNJ team members, church pastors and lay leaders gathered at the Living Word Baptist Church in Beachwood to discuss the Sister Church relationship we hope to establish with the Haitian Baptist churches. Unlike many other sister church projects, in which first world churches are valued for the monetary support they can provide, this sister church ministry is based on the following 3 principles:
1. The focus is on the developing of authentic and long lasting friendships that are mutual and based on a spiritual equality.
2. The purpose is the sharing of wisdom and other spiritual gifts in a spirit of openness and humility.
3. Joint mission endeavors will embody the principles of equality and mutuality. Haitians pastors and lay members will serve in New Jersey settings (such as at Camp Lebanon), even as we will work hand in hand with them in Haiti.
About 15 ABCNJ churches have indicated an interest in participating in this ministry, but we can certainly take on more churches! If you are interested in finding out more about this ministry, please contact Rev. Sue Royle (ABCNJ Associate Regional Pastor for GoGlobal Ministries), Rev. Dr. Edgard Nicolas (ABCNJ Associate Regional Pastor for Haitian Ministries), Rev. Ken Cadette (ABCNJ Coordinator for this project), or the region office.