Bon Repos timeline.
In the spring of 2013, Pastor Vengione Vital, pastor of OMS-related church in Port-au-Prince, was determined to help the poor people in his church, and other daughter churches in southern Haiti, who were drastically affected by the January 12, 2010 earthquake. He wanted to help them find a place to live that offered HOPE and DIGNITY. He asked me to pray with him about a project that would build homes for the poorest-of-the-poor in the OMS-related churches. I wanted to help, and so we prayed.
In the summer of 2013, we decided on a 3.18 acre tract of land in Bon Repos (just north of Port-au-Prince) and came to agreement on price. By early fall God had provided all the funding necessary to purchase the land, and we were well on our way. Ken Westercamp, a retired architect and volunteer at the Greenwood MFM office, helped design the layout of the property and get approval from our Haitian counterparts. It was decided to build 35 homes, a guest house, a school/church, install wells, and erect toilet facilities––all on this little tract of land.
In December of 2013, a prayer team converged on the vacant lot, formerly a sugar cane field, and stood at the four corners of the lot and asked for God’s abundant affirmation for the project and for those who would inhabit this village.
In January of 2014, the first team arrived to start working with our Haitian coworkers on the perimeter wall and the very first house. As of this writing 33 of the 35 planned homes, a guest house, toilet facilities, three wells, and a fabulous playground are completed.
On May 15, 2016, a grand celebration and dedication of the Bon Repos property is planned.
Is Bon Repos only a building project?
Bon Repos work teams are about far more than blocks, cement, wood, and tin. One great aspect of this project has been the blessing of working with Haitians on the jobsite. Teams get to know the Haitian men they work with, including Gabriel Principal, our Haitian foreman, and other workers. Every day at the jobsite we start with worship songs, a brief devotional, and a time of sharing. There have been many people come to Christ as a result of this quiet time before the hectic work day. We also see teams going throughout the community sharing some precious time with the residents of the Bon Repos area and handing out bags of beans and rice, bottles of cooking oil, and other gifts that bless families.
Some teams come with the specific intention of ministering to the children of the Bon Repos community, both inside and outside our perimeter wall.
To date, the Bon Repos project has accommodated more than 64 teams involving 832 people. Add to those numbers statistics of the original Homes for Haiti project which involved 65 teams with 731 people. The Homes for Haiti project built 54 houses plus an orphan house and school depot.
Bon Repos is a project with a future!
One of the most promising opportunities at Bon Repos is the school/church facility, which is the centerpiece of the project. We understand the impact that a church has in a community. But, consider the impact for Christ that a Christian education can have in Haiti. We project that the Bon Repos school will someday host approximately 300 students. The influence of 300 students with a Christian education can have a significant impact in the community and eventually across the country. Pastor Vengione Vital’s vision of a place that offers HOPE and DIGNITY is now taking shape at Bon Repos.