We’re partnering with other ministries to respond to profound needs in southern Haiti. Please pray for the relief effort.
We’re partnering with other ministries to respond to profound needs in southern Haiti. Please pray for the relief effort.
Please join us in praying for those who lost homes and family members in the recent earthquake.
Dear LSM Supporters,
As you may have heard, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the Les Cayes area of Haiti on Saturday morning. We have been in contact with our program directors and are thankful to report that, as far as we know, all of our staff and Home of Hope children are accounted for. However, some of our staff members lost family members in the tragedy. Also, LSM sustained structural damage at some of our properties. We continue to closely monitor the situation and will keep you updated on any significant developments. There will undoubtedly be more to report.
Saturday’s disaster came on the heels of a political unrest following a presidential assassination. And now the country braces for the arrival of a new calamity: Tropical Storm Grace.
Though our staff members maintain their strong faith in the Lord, many are feeling understandably discouraged. They will greatly appreciate your prayers and support in the days ahead. May we all take refuge in God’s sovereignty and faithfulness during these uncertain times!
“Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth give way, and though the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.” Psalm 42:6
𝗠𝗲𝗲𝘁 𝗮 𝗙𝗲𝘄 𝗠𝗲𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝗢𝘂𝗿 𝗧𝗲𝗮𝗺 𝗛𝗲𝗿𝗲 𝗮𝘁 𝗟𝗦𝗠!
Our LSM staff is a large, international ensemble of dedicated, hard-working professionals that in many ways reflects the diversity of the Kingdom itself. Below are a few short stories, testimonies and blurbs about the wonderful people who challenge and encourage us every day and who work passionately week after week in our shared mission of serving the last, least, lost and lonely. Many of these friends of ours reflect important qualities of God’s character, and we hope that their examples inspire you as much as they inspire us!
𝗔𝗻 𝗘𝗻𝗰𝗼𝘂𝗿𝗮𝗴𝗲𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗡𝗲𝗵𝗲𝗺𝗶𝗲: 𝗚𝗼𝗱 𝗶𝘀 𝗶𝗻 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗹, 𝗡𝗼 𝗠𝗮𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗪𝗵𝗮𝘁
Nehemie serves the important role of accountant or “controller” for LSM in Haiti. Responsible use of funding is key to everything LSM has accomplished, and optimization through accounting is a subject Nehemie has cared deeply about since grade school. But even as “controller,” she recognizes it’s God who ultimately knows what’s best for each of us. When Nehemie needed a job, she took her prayer request to church. Her pastor, our own Wilfrid Remonvil opened the door for her to work at LSM. Next, Nehemie wanted to get married. Unable to resolve this herself, she simply attended to the task before her: helping LSM run effectively, serving as many vulnerable children as possible. Along the way, she fell in love with Evan Forges, a member of LSM’s business staff. The two married, and this summer, they celebrated the birth of a girl. As the name “LSM” reminds us, no matter the control we may or may not feel, the Lord is our shepherd. And because He loves us, we can trust that our true needs are never far from His attention or His Heart!
𝗟𝗦𝗠 𝗘𝗱𝘂𝗰𝗮𝘁𝗼𝗿 𝗦𝘁𝗲𝗽𝘀 𝗢𝘂𝘁 𝗶𝗻 𝗙𝗮𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝘁𝗼 𝗛𝗲𝗹𝗽 𝗞𝗶𝗱𝘀: “𝗦𝗼𝗺𝗲𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗛𝗮𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝗗𝗼 𝗜𝘁!”
When Jean Noel first agreed to direct our Welsh School in Haiti, the school was not under LSM management. They couldn’t even afford to pay him, but Jean Noel agreed to help because when he looked around his community, he saw a cycle of uneducated kids growing up to become adults without hope or opportunities – like their parents before them. “The school had no money to pay me, but I knew if I didn’t act in faith, then nothing would ever change. Someone had to step up in faith for these kids, and I couldn’t say no!” Since that time, LSM has acquired the school, and Jean now receives a living wage for his work. During this Season of Giving, let’s pause and reflect on Jean’s favorite Scripture: “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all will be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33). How is God asking you to step out in faith?
𝗗𝗶𝗼: 𝗙𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗛𝗶𝘀 𝗚𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗹𝗲 𝗦𝗺𝗶𝗹𝗲, 𝗬𝗼𝘂 𝗪𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱 𝗡𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝗞𝗻𝗼𝘄 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗔𝗱𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘀𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗚𝗼𝗱 𝗛𝗮𝘀 𝗛𝗲𝗹𝗽𝗲𝗱 𝗛𝗶𝗺 𝗢𝘃𝗲𝗿𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗲
Talking to Dio, LSM’s Vehicle Manager, one is struck by his smile, his compassion, and his deep care for others. You would never guess the hardships he’s endured. Four years ago, he lost his family’s farm and house to Hurricane Matthew. Dio also lost his father around that time and was the victim of a severe car accident. The oldest of six, he was left alone to care for his mother and siblings – but his injuries confined him to bed. Undeterred, Dio read books and taught himself English during the recovery. Soon after, he learned about a job opportunity at LSM, and Dio’s mechanical skills, as well as his new ability to speak English, earned him the job. Huge thanks to Dio for helping us keep essential LSM vehicles on the road!
𝗧𝗿𝗼𝘆 𝗟𝗲𝘆𝘀𝗲: 𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗨𝗽 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝗚𝗼𝗱’𝘀 𝗞𝗶𝗻𝗴𝗱𝗼𝗺 𝗶𝗻 𝗛𝗮𝗶𝘁𝗶
In his first letter to Thessalonica, Paul reminds the church to “encourage each other and build each other up.” The person on LSM’s team who knows the most about physical building is Troy Leyse, our Construction Manager. Troy is the primary staff person responsible for managing construction of our new Homes of Hope and businesses in Haiti, as well as installation of other key features such as wells, security walls, bridges, and solar panel arrays. But as Troy would be the first to tell you, his biggest responsibility is overseeing the building up of people, not structures. In everything LSM does, our goal is to equip local workers and to empower local leaders who God is raising up to help usher in a new dawn for Haiti!
𝗠𝗶𝗰𝗵𝗲𝗹𝗶𝗻𝗲 𝗧𝗮𝘃𝗲𝗿𝗻𝗲: 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗟𝗮𝘀𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗜𝗺𝗽𝗮𝗰𝘁 𝗼𝗳 𝗞𝗶𝗻𝗱𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀
𝗥𝗲𝗯𝗲𝗰𝗰𝗮: 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗙𝗶𝗿𝘀𝘁 𝗦𝗺𝗶𝗹𝗲 𝗬𝗼𝘂 𝗦𝗲𝗲 𝗪𝗵𝗲𝗻 𝗬𝗼𝘂 𝗪𝗮𝗹𝗸 𝗶𝗻 𝗢𝘂𝗿 𝗗𝗼𝗼𝗿
Rebecca Webb, LSM’s Administrative Assistant, wears many hats. As she puts it, a big part of her job is “creating and maintaining a good first impression of LSM.” Anyone who’s ever visited or called our U.S. office has almost certainly interacted with Rebecca, who besides serving as a public face, manages our gift shop, supports our effort to record gifts and stay in touch with donors, assists with event planning, manages our supply inventory, schedules the staff calendar, and plans our recurring “Lunch and Learns,” which have become a highly anticipated tradition for the team each month. She says: “My heart’s been touched to learn about dire situations in Haiti and Ethiopia, as well as the promise of a brighter future.”
𝗙𝗮𝗰𝗲𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝗘𝘁𝗵𝗶𝗼𝗽𝗶𝗮: 𝗣𝗮𝘂𝗹𝗼𝘀, 𝗦𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗚𝗼𝗱’𝘀 𝗟𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝘁𝗼 𝗧𝗵𝗼𝘀𝗲 𝗶𝗻 𝗗𝗮𝗿𝗸𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀
Paulos Mamo, one of our dedicated program managers in Ethiopia, has served LSM for more than ten years, helping children and their single moms break cycles of desperation and poverty through our business, education, trauma healing, and discipleship programs. Early in Paulos’ ministry, he still remembers the first time he and LSM helped a young mother who was on the verge of resorting to prostitution to feed her kids. A decade later, Paulos has collected hundreds of similar stories. The work is difficult, but also inspiring. Paulos says he has “no greater joy” than helping our moms become business owners and seeing the kids achieve their full, God-given potential.
𝗕𝗿𝗶𝗰𝗸𝗛𝗼𝘂𝘀𝗲 𝗠𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘀 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝘃𝗶𝗱𝗲 𝗬𝗼𝘂𝘁𝗵 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝗮 𝗥𝗼𝗮𝗱𝗺𝗮𝗽 𝘁𝗼 𝗮 𝗕𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗙𝘂𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗲
𝗘𝗱 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗦𝘆𝗹𝘃𝗮𝗶𝗻 𝗦𝗲𝗿𝘃𝗲 𝗶𝗻 𝗠𝗶𝗻𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗿𝘆 𝗧𝗼𝗴𝗲𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗔𝗴𝗮𝗶𝗻 – 𝟯𝟱 𝗬𝗲𝗮𝗿𝘀 𝗟𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗿!
𝗢𝗩𝗖 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗳𝗲𝗿𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲: 𝗥𝗮𝗶𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗮 𝗡𝗲𝘄 𝗚𝗲𝗻𝗲𝗿𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗼𝗳 𝗩𝗼𝗶𝗰𝗲𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗩𝘂𝗹𝗻𝗲𝗿𝗮𝗯𝗹𝗲!
IN early 2020, LSM received an opportunity to invest in the next generation of advocates for vulnerable children and families at Taylor University’s Care Conference, hosted by TU’s Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) office. We had numerous exciting encounters throughout the scheduled lineup of speakers, panels, and breakout sessions, including Keegan, a junior at TU who was mentored years ago by an LSM staff member that shared with him our Business Development Plan for Haiti, inspiring him to attend TU and study OVC and Business Development. Seeds planted today may bring a harvest in generations to come!
𝗖𝗼𝗼𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗨𝗽 𝗦𝘂𝘀𝘁𝗮𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗡𝗲𝘄 𝗙𝗼𝗼𝗱 𝗣𝗿𝗲𝗽 𝗜𝗻𝗻𝗼𝘃𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀 𝗶𝗻 𝗛𝗮𝗶𝘁𝗶
In early 2020, Construction Project Manager Troy Leyse used our office studio to record a video for Haitian Home of Hope parents in which he explained and demonstrated some exciting new cooking equipment. A rice cooker and warmer, two induction burners, and a set of compatible pots and pans were shipped down to nearly all of LSM’s Homes of Hope to replace more expensive and less reliable propane burners and equipment. The cost of propane was going up, and we anticipated that the rise would continue. Also, unrest in Haiti at the time was causing a supply shortage that further escalated the issue. Our solution uses electrical solar panels, meaning our Homes will be able to cook effectively and inexpensively without propane – or even local power. Bon Appétit!
There is a severe fuel shortage in Haiti. For years, Venezuela has provided Haitians with subsidized gasoline and diesel. However in recent months, Venezuela has become less accommodating due to the rise of a humanitarian crisis in their own country. Haiti’s President, Jovenel Moise, and his government owe Venezuela $100 million, which they are unable to repay. The situation has created an extreme fuel shortage, further stoking political dissent and protests. Those most affected in times of crisis tend to be Haiti’s youngest and most vulnerable.
Rationing gas at the pump means Haitians are often prevented from filling their tanks. As a result of this shortfall, the Haitian black market has moved in quickly to run up prices and score a profit. Scarcity of fuel is preventing children from attending school, and transportation of people and commercial goods in Haiti is rapidly grinding to a halt, causing stores and businesses to shut down.
Abdias Victor travels to our Homes of Hope to take pictures and assist with Child Development. He reports that Haiti’s fuel crisis and the resulting riots have affected our ability to reach the children with supplies and training, as well as the general safety of the neighborhoods where our families reside. Many of our kids are missing school due to the riots. On a recent trip to one of LSM’s Homes, Abdias even spotted a violent riot, including burning tires which can produce toxic fumes. Our staff reports that the difficulty of transporting workers and supplies has slowed construction at LSM Tech and also contributed to a shortage of sand at our Industrial Site. We pray that God will protect our staff and our Home of Hope families during these uncertain times!
Moments like these provide a necessary reminder about the vulnerability of Haiti and the importance of LSM’s work to bring holistic transformation by investing in children and in business ventures that move the country forward! While gas stations lock their doors and protesters fill the streets, our children continue to study hard as best they can and grow in their daily walk with Jesus. They are building the foundation for a future in Haiti that looks very different from what we see today.
Staff are also taking proactive measures. “Roof installation has stalled at LSM Tech because of store closures,” says Jose, one of our Project Supervisors. “But I’m proud of our workers, who have come up with creative ways to busy themselves, shift to other projects, and keep the site on schedule.” LSM continues to pursue exciting efforts in solar energy and other alternatives that reduce Haiti’s dependence on fossil fuels, foreign assistance, and even the stability of its own government. In the future, a fuel shortage in Haiti may have far less of an impact.
We are thrilled to be expanding our care for local foster and adoptive families through the LSM BrickHouse program. This summer, LSM gained a new arm to our domestic work with the merge of BrickHouse Family Ministries. (Read more about it here.) As we reimagine this program, we’ve considered how we can best support foster youth in our community – and the families that welcome them home.
It’s clear that foster and adoptive families often face unique challenges as they bring healing to children from hard places. Even if a child has been in the family’s care since they were very young, there are often attachment issues that they bring with them since before birth! Add on the complexities of racial integrations, neglect or abuse a child might have faced, and there’s a myriad of difficult scenarios to navigate through. We want to offer help!
Adam Carroll, LMFT-A, is our first Christian counselor on staff – and he’s excited to be able to provide free counseling for local foster and adoptive families as he has availability. We’d love to offer this critical support for families in the Bluffton, IN area. If you know of a local family who is currently or who is considering adoption or fostering, please share this with them! To learn more, please email Adam at firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition, we continue to serve hundreds of families each year through our free adoption resources program. The road to adoption is complicated and sometimes eligibility within certain countries is not clear. Our staff can help answer those questions for you, break down the costs and coach you on the right questions to ask – all free of charge. It’s our prayer that these tools will empower you as you seek to care for the vulnerable child God has for you!
Whether God has called you to be a foster or adoptive parent, or you’re best suited to financially support others raising vulnerable children, we believe everyone has a place in His work! As we serve together, we want to thank you because none of this is possible without your prayerful support. You are enabling us to help care for these families – and the vulnerable children they love.
“In all of my 65 years in Haiti, I have never seen anything like this.” – Pastor Wilfrid, LSM Home of Hope Director, after Hurricane Matthew, October 2016
On October 4, 2016, a massive Category 5 hurricane struck southwest Haiti. Hurricane Matthew’s destructive path hit near several of our Homes of Hope and the surrounding communities. Thankfully, because of good construction, our Home of Hope families were safe. But the wide-spread damage was devastating in surrounding areas. Read our blog from right after the hurricane here and here.
As our Haitian staff and families observed the horrifying destruction, they quickly went to work helping neighbors and friends. Many people lost loved ones. This hurricane had changed them forever. The love and support you showed during this difficult time was a reflection of Christ! YOU responded with tremendous generosity, and we were able to show love and support to the local communities as well as provide new roofs for many homes!
Long after the storm has passed, and the roofs are replaced, we are still seeing the effects. Many of our young kids suffered PTSD after the hurricane. Water flooded several homes. The sights and sounds were horrific, and they knew people who did die in the natural disaster. For others, it reminded them of the 2010 earthquake that took hundreds of thousands of Haitian’s lives. That natural disaster stole many of their mothers, fathers and loved ones. It is the reason several of them are orphans today.
Through these devastating natural disasters, we are incredibly grateful for our amazing staff and programs that we have to help our children process these difficult experiences. The emotions are immense and sometimes the children don’t know how to verbalize all that is going on inside. Our Trauma Healing Program is there for them and are a safe place for them to process through their emotions. They have learned to discuss what’s troubling them in order to find hope and healing going forward.
As we reflect on Hurricane Matthew, will you join us in praying for those who have suffered much over the last three years? Some of our children have lost loved ones, and this week is a reminder of that pain. But there is always hope in Jesus and healing from the traumatic circumstances they have faced. It is our desire to point them to our One true Healer!
When you talk to Dio, you are struck with the warmth of his smile. He is compassionate and cares deeply about others. You would never guess the hardships this man has endured over his short 27 years on earth. In 2016, Hurricane Matthew stole his home and his farm. During the clean-up process, Dio was involved in a severe automobile accident. He shattered his hip and had multiple other injuries. He laid in a hospital bed for weeks with a sheet tied around his pelvic bone. He was determined to use his healing time to educate himself and learn English.
One year later his father passed away. As the oldest of six children and a mother to care for, Dio knew what he had to do. But in a country where jobs are scarce, how would he provide for all of them?
Then he heard about Loving Shepherd Ministries. A mechanic was needed.
Dio had many of the skills needed for this job. And although he didn’t yet know about the amazing ministry he’d be a part of, he knew that applying meant the chance to feed his family and provide in a once hopeless situation.
Safe transportation is something Dio knows the importance of first hand. Like all Haitians, they know that the reality is, any time you travel on the difficult roads you’re at some level of risk. That’s why LSM prioritizes the safety and availability of our vehicles. It makes a huge difference for our staff and Home of Hope familes!
Vehicles are necessary so we can deliver supplies to our Homes of Hope and transport children for medical needs. Our staff needs safe transportation so they can access the homes and provide education services and deliver supplies. Without Dio and the other mechanics, we would not be able to effectively care for our children.
Today, Dio is the Vehicle Manager for LSM. His excellent communication in English has been a huge benefit as he daily corresponds with our US staff. It was as if God was gently showing Dio how every season of his life was preparing him for this new position!
As part of the automative program at LSM, Dio’s job has made a profound difference in his life as well as his family’s. His brother also works as a mechanic alongside of him. Dio says, “Work is freedom! You have given me the freedom to provide for my family. I can now get them food and care for them because I have work. Thank you!”
One job has transformed the future for an entire family because of your prayers and financial support. Thank you for partnering with us. You are making a difference!
Saturday morning, our new LSM Event Center opened! We hosted a wonderful ladies’ brunch to support foster and adoptive families. Businesses and individuals sponsored tables of family and friends who came to hear guest speaker, Leslie Ludy talk about “The Power of a Poured Out Life: Exchanging Selfish Pursuits for Sacrificial Living.”
It was a moving morning as Leslie passionately shared about laying down our desires, cutting out the noise of the world around us, and opening ourselves up to what God wants to accomplish through us. Her family’s own series of adoption stories were powerful – and it reminded us that when we walk into the unknown, there is a richness that can come from it!
This morning was a call for each woman present to stand up for “Sacrificial Love.” Because of your generous gifts, we were able to exceed our matching grant of $10,000! This will enable us to help many more foster and adoptive families who are starting their journey of sacrificial love.
Leslie quoted Bett Scott Stam who said at age 18, “Lord, I give up all my own plans and purposes, all my own desires and hopes, and accept Thy will for my life. I give myself, my life, my all, utterly to Thee to be Thine forever. Fill me and seal me with Thy Holy Spirit. Use me as Thou wilt. Send me where Thou wilt. Work out Thy whole will in my life, at any cost.”
What might God do if you prayed this radical prayer for your life? We were deeply moved by this message, and are praying that He continues to guide each one present on Saturday to lay down their lives for the Lord. Right now, a vulnerable child is waiting on your surrender. Will you join us in loving sacrificially?