I suppose if I would have gone to bed tonight I'd be waking in 15 minutes to get ready for the airport. It's hard to believe I'm just a few hours away from a flight that will take me to meet with 10 others from across the States who'll make up this first HORT (Haiti Orphan Relief Team) iniatitative. We have much to do and it's absolutely necessary to have a giant team here at home praying for all that is happening.
Here is a post from one of my fellow team members, David Leventhal, with Hope for Orphans, explaining a bit about our mission as well as ways you can begin to pray. I'll be sure to keep you posted on how you can continue. And, I thank you so, so much for being a part of this mission in this---and so many other ways.
By way of reminder the overarching aim of the Haiti Orphan Relief Team (HORT) is to identify, train and resource Haitian churches to be the direct rescue and care mechanism for Haiti’s hundreds of thousands of orphans. This is truly the most effective and scalable response to a need of such great complexity and magnitude. The primary goal is to better enable Haitian churches to reunite or keep children within extended family structures. For children that have no other options, HORT will help Haitian churches to provide direct care in home environments, not institutional orphanages. U.S. churches are also part of the solution and are being recruited by HORT to come alongside these Haitian churches in church-to-church partnerships to initiate, strengthen and grow their outreach to orphans in their immediate communities. These partnerships will also work toward the self-sustainability of the orphan rescue and care efforts in Haiti. HORT is a Christ-centered, church-focused initiative based on the assumption that the church has been clearly called by God to care for orphans (James 1:27).
As for this first HORT deployment, here are some specific prayer requests:
* Pray that as a team we might be the hands and feet of Christ to the people of Haiti.
* Pray that our attitude toward the people of Haiti would be servant-focused, that is, that we would see ourselves as their servants for Christ’ sake.
* Pray for unity of hearts and minds amidst the team – that logos and egos would be left in the U.S. and that our attitude would be that of Christ (Philippians 2:1-8)
* Pray that HORT would be able to begin to effectively map out a long term, sustainable orphan-care model for Haiti
* Pray that as a result of our efforts many Haitian children would find love, support, education and care in a Christ-centered environment
* Pray for safe travel from the states to Dominican Republic and then from DR into Haiti
* Pray that the Lord would lead us to the churches and pastors He wants HORT to engage
* Pray for discernment to know how to handle the unexpected issues that will certainly arise
* Pray for extra patience and grace for wives, husbands and children back in the States.
* Pray for the Lord to raise up churches in the U.S. that would be willing to partner with churches in Haiti in a church-to-church partnership.
Pray by name for the team for spiritual (Ephesians 6:10) and physical protection:
o John Roberts (Incident Commander)
o Paul Myhill (Liaison Officer)
o Jodi Jackson Tucker (Information Officer)
o Scott Vair (Planning and Finance)
o Byron Schick (Operations)
o Jen Gash (Logistics)
o Theo Sandberg (Task Force Leader)
o Alan Hunt (Task Force Leader)
o Aaron Bensko (Videographer)
o Dieula Previlon (Local Cultural Expert)
o David Leventhal (Task Force Leader)