FALL 2017 NEWSLETTER
THE LOVING SHEPHERD / Volume 14, Issue 3
LEARNING TO SERVE IN THE KINGDOM
by Ed Schwartz, Founder & President
The 240 LSM Home of Hope kids know all too well what it means to be vulnerable. This was their story for many years. But now, they have loving families where they are receiving a unique continuum of care that supports their physical needs and fills their lives with hope that can only be found in Jesus. They have every opportunity to reach their God-given potential. As they grow, they are beginning to understand the message of Luke 12:48, which teaches us that we are blessed to be a blessing. The children themselves say:
“I never want to forget where I came from. I want to help other kids when I grow up just like I have been helped.”
“I know I have a role to play in sharing about Jesus and helping vulnerable children as I get older.”
“I really am excited to be a part of my youth group at church. I want to be a pastor when I grow up so I can help people find hope in Jesus!”
“I am thankful for the blessings I have for food, clothing, a home, family and a church.”
When LSM sent evangelism and hygiene packages to Haiti for VBS this summer, our Home of Hope children and their families passed them out in their villages. They were humbled to have the opportunity to share their faith in practical ways to people in their own communities.
The Gospel Project (a new initiative of LSM that you’ll hear more about) allows Home of Hope families, with their local churches, to share thousands of Gospel Kits in villages around southwest Haiti. With only 15% of the Haitian population engaged in a Protestant and evangelical congregation, there is a great need for the name of Jesus and His saving Gospel. LSM kids have an intimate role in spreading the same compassion they received to other vulnerable children around them, building on Kingdom purposes.
The name of Jesus has always been central to all LSM does. The Gospel Project is the next key step in raising a new generation of kids in Haiti who are freed from generational cycles of poverty and hopelessness. We’re thankful that God continues to work through you, through our staff, and especially through the vulnerable children we serve so that they can reach their God-given potential and change their communities for Christ.
More Space. More Lives Changed.
15 years ago, on July 22, 2002, LSM opened its doors for the first time in a 300-square-foot office in downtown Bluffton, IN.
Since then, hundreds of the world’s most vulnerable children have come into loving families where they are nurtured through a unique continuum of care to reach their God-given potential. We praise God for His work and are humbled to announce that He’s opened new doors to serve even more vulnerable children as we enter the next 15 years of ministry.
We are moving our home offices within the next few months to create more space for the amazing things God is doing through you and LSM!
Not only does this new space allow us to ship from our own warehouse (instead of renting additional locations) but we’ll also have plenty of hands-on volunteer opportunities through The Gospel Project, a new initiative we’ll launch with our move.
The Gospel Project
The Gospel Project connects volunteers in the U.S. with our Home of Hope families in Haiti. Gospel Kits include a variety of Haitian-Creole evangelism books, hygiene materials and other helpful resources. They will be packaged by volunteers and church groups at our new warehouse and then shipped to Haiti. Groups helping package the Kits will also have tangible ways to experience daily life in Haiti through interactive displays, prayer rooms and impactful presentations!
Once the packages arrive in Les Cayes, Haiti, our Home of Hope kids, parents and their church family will then distribute the Kits to desperate communities around them. Our kids will not only learn the importance of sharing their faith, they’ll see the impact of lives changed through the hope of the Gospel! We can’t wait to see what the ripple effects of this project will be—both in the States and Haiti.
First VBS in Ethiopia
We had our first Vacation Bible School in Ethiopia this summer! Over 75 kids came together over several weekends to hear Bible stories, play games that nurtured their minds and bodies and listen to lessons on everything from handling peer pressure to being a peacemaker. They also were able to make their own crafts as they were taught about their loving Heavenly Father —a deeply meaningful concept for children who, for a variety of reasons, don’t have an earthly dad involved in their lives.
As we work with single mothers to create sustainable homes and dignified jobs, their children are watching every step of the way. We firmly believe that when a child feels stability at home, they are freed to learn and grow in many other areas. We are seeing this lived out in real, tangible ways and can’t wait to see the hope-filled futures these children embrace as we come alongside their families!
A New Future for 12 Vulnerable Boys
“I didn’t sleep before because of so many mosquitos. Now I sleep all night in a nice bed!” – Steve
“Wow! There’s a lot of food. I can’t even eat all of it!” – Fadson
“Wow! Lots of toys! I am so thankful.” – Richardson
Through the generosity and prayers from you and many other supporters, 12 young boys joined a brand-new LSM Home of Hope in La Source, Haiti, on September 9! Jean and Emise, the new mom and dad, are raising the boys as their own children. Each child will receive a full continuum of care through young adulthood that will help them reach their God-given potential. Then, as godly, educated, and equipped leaders, they can return to their communities and use the work and life skills they’ve learned, rooted in the saving grace of the Gospel, to transform Haiti for Christ, breaking generational cycles of poverty and hopelessness.
God has a huge vision and we believe He has hand-picked these 12 boys for great things in the future. But today, we rejoice in the security and hope they are finding in their new family. Please join us in prayer for the La Source family as they begin their journey together.