Who Do We Say Jesus is in Haiti?
Patrick Villier, CGMB Overseas Partner – Haiti
I take this opportunity to greet and thank my friends who are present in this room today: Rev. David A. Vargas, Rev. Felix and Maria Ortiz, Rev. Sandra and Daniel Gourdet, and Rev. Ruth and Charles Wallace. These friends have worked in acompañaemiento with CONASPEH in support of the churches and victims both in Haiti and around the world.
To the question, “Who do you say Jesus is?” we, in Haiti, say that “Jesus is solidarity.” We were 50 churches in 1986 fighting and working to promote the National Spiritual Council of Churches of Haiti.
Our objective is to fight against exclusion and social, state and religious injustices with respect to protestant churches and the poorest of the poor of Haiti who did not have the right to celebrate marriage or present their children at the temple of the Lord–churches and people who were rejected by the government and dominant classes of society.
Thanks to the solidarity of the south-to-south churches and Global Ministries, CONASPEH gained its first victory in 1996 when it was recognized by the government of Haiti.
Solidarity is not only sharing resources and the word of God, but also acting as a protesting voice. CONASPEH has been able to act in various ways in Haiti:
1. Representing the protestant churches at the Ministry of Religion;
2. Being responsible for the question of illiteracy;
3. Being responsible for the program “one voice, one guide” on national television in Haiti; and
4. Being chosen to represent the protestant churches at the electoral provisional council.
“Jesus is solidarity.” There is no hope without solidarity (John 5:5 and 7). A man who spent 38 years without finding solidarity with others, but at his first meeting with Jesus found solidarity which brought him hope. “Jesus is solidarity.”