The first converts in the islands came in the 1950's. Benny Morton who was born in Eleuthera was sent back by his grandparents to reach out with the Gospel. They had become Christians after moving to Miami. Benny met William Miller while riding in his taxi. The Morton family supported William in Christian Colleges in Texas and Oklahoma. William returned home and started the first congregation which became Highbury Park in Nassau. He was assisted in this effort by the Hastie family and others. Additional congregations have been established over the years among the 700 Islands. Two American families joined the efforts in Freeport and Abaco. The Richard Parkers in 1979 and the David Caskeys in 1980. The Harding School of Biblical Studies assisted in training preachers and teachers. Students from the school now serve as preachers, Elders, and Deacons. Many of the women students are active teachers.
Support in evangelism comes from island churches and from a number of congregations and individuals in the United States. Sister Beverly Parker passed on and Richard moved back to the states due to poor health. The Caskey family continues to work among the 14 congregations as requested. We are proud of the local island congregations and their outreach. We continue to appreciate the prayers and support of those who give for evangelism, Bibles, and Hurricane recovery.
David Caskey, Bahamas Missionary
The Flying Preacher
The work in Haiti started over 20 years ago. We received an invitation from a Pentecostal pastor in Delmas, Port-au-Prince. We had converted his cousin in the nearby Turks and Caicos Islands who was so excited about learning the truth.
After a few months of teaching the Haitian pastor via the Internet and telephone, we took a trip to visit the congregation there. Our joy was great as the entire congregation of 168 adults was converted to Christ.
This church is still there and still faithful, vibrant and evangelistic. We only made one or two trips to Haiti at that time but as another denominational church asked to receive more accurate instruction in the Bible and then yet another and another, we started to concentrate fully on Haiti. Within a few years we had converted over 20 such denominational churches and the demand for the truth was getting greater each year. Soon we had a total of 30-40 new requests from various denominational congregations asking to learn about the whole truth. This number kept on growing exponentially and soon we had to resort to new ways, methods and measures to accommodate all these requests. We used several weekly radio programs all over Haiti and we established a group of dedicated, excited young men (whom we called TIMOTHY TEAMS) who went out all over the country in response to these invitations. The TEAMS would spend at least a month in every new congregation, then they invited me to speak to the congregations and if the congregation was converted the TEAM spend 2-3 months more with the new Christians. The interesting fact is that all of the churches that we converted are still there. People in Haiti are faithful even after 20 years!
We insisted that every congregation started a school (Kindergarten through High School) and most heeded our pleas. These schools were (and are) such a great blessing to us as they brought about more conversions than all of our combined evangelism methods.
My plan was to turn over the work into the able hands of our many elders, preachers and teachers as soon as possible. Then came the horrible, devastating earthquake which is still called the most horrific disaster in modern times with over 250,000 dead. This disaster set us back a few years but the churches were eager to move on and work towards our goal of self-sufficiency, self-governing and self-propagation. Then came Hurricane Matthew and devastated large portions of the country, mainly in the south of Haiti where we have our largest concentration of churches.
As so many of my fellow Christians along with the TIMOTHY TEAMS told me, we are hurt but not destroyed. The church remains strong and we will overcome. With the help of churches from all over the world we will rebuild our devastated church buildings, our homes and our lives.
The work in Haiti is a great work with incredible results each and every year. We now have two schools of preaching in Haiti and in the Dominican Republic. Every three years we turn out about 35-40 new preachers in each school. That is exciting to us.
Today we have the task ahead of us to rebuild and rebuild we will! Our faith is not shaken because of the loss of material things, it made us stronger.
Thank you all for your financial help. Thank you all for helping us to get back to normalcy. Thank you for caring, thank you for being one with us in this great challenge to save the lost, to teach Jesus where things look dark. Thank you for being lights that shine to all of us in Haiti. Thank you for being monthly contributors. Please remember us again in your 2017 budgets. We invite you and any new congregation or individuals to partner with us in this great work. God bless, Joe Worndle, Haiti Missionary