Tag Archives: But God Ministries; missions; Tony West; West Family; Stan Buckley; Gallet Chambon; Hope Center; Ganthier

BGM – Galette Chambon – Child Sponsorship is LAUNCHED! Hallelujah!!

It’s finally ready! What an exciting answer to prayer! I have been praying for God to make a way for the children in our village to not only go to school but be able to have a daily meal provided for them for at least two years, and it’s finally happening! Child Sponsorships for the children of Galette Chambon have begun, and the response has already been awesome!

Go to the But God Ministries home page and click How to Get Involved

Go to the But God Ministries home page and click How to Get Involved

It started two years ago when I applied for Feed My Starving Children to admit us into a feeding program through a local distributor. We were denied because we were trying to feed too many children at once, and it would not be sustainable. My heart was broken, but then I also understood. I began praying for God to provide another way. All I wanted was to see children go to school and for them to be fed. In my prayer, I said, “Lord, I know you want us to care for these children and feed them as well. Your Word is FULL of commands to care for the children and the poor, and we have a village full of hungry children. Show us how, and we will run with it.” ….and He did! The folks up in Thoman had already been running a successful child sponsorship program and over 400 children in that village were getting a daily meal at school. Although we had already been sending kids to school in our village, the money we had to send them wasn’t nearly enough to feed all of them. Although they are so thankful that we help them go to school, we knew that empty stomachs meant zero learning. So we began looking into starting the same program in Galette Chambon.

Click on the link to sponsor a child in Galette Chambon

Click on the link to sponsor a child in Galette Chambon

We are starting with 25 children. Twelve are from Pastor Johel’s school and 13 are from Professor Salomon’s school. These are the two schools we have been sponsoring for three years now. As children are sponsored, we will add more to the program. For every sponsorship, you send one child to school, paying for his/her tuition, uniform, books, exams, etc., which is great! However, once we get 50 children sponsored, it gets even better! Once we get 50 sponsored, every sponsorship will feed FOUR children and we can begin buying the rice, beans, oil, etc. to start preparing meals for ALL of the kids to have EVERY day after school. The cost is $37 per month. You are given a choice of using SimpleGive through the BGM website or bank draft. If you use SimpleGive, that host company charges a processing fee which makes it $38.50. Bank draft, I believe, is a flat $37 per month.

Click on the link for each child to read a bit more about him or her. There is a link on each page that you can click to take you to the sponsorship form. The link says

Click on the link for each child to read a bit more about him or her. There is a link on each page that you can click to take you to the sponsorship form. The link says “Click here to sponsor me!”

Throughout this post, I have inserted pictures. These pictures show you how to get to the sponsorship page and how to sponsor a child. Please take some time to go to the But God Ministries page and click the links to meet our children. Or better yet, here’s a link directly to the page: BUT GOD MINISTRIES GC-SPONSORSHIP

As you look at their faces, ask God if He would make a way for you to help one of these go to school.

When God shared His vision with Tony four years ago – the same vision He had given Stan Buckley and others at FBC Jackson – He said to Tony, “What good will it do the people of Haiti for you to take one child out of the country when I want to use you to change a generation?” THESE are the faces of that generation!! These are the children God wants to use to bring revival to a land that has lived in hunger for far too long. The vision has been happening in so many ways over the last three years, but THIS step is one that excites me more than others because this is a huge step towards changing a generation. Thank you for sharing in my excitement over this! Thank you for your prayers for our ministry here! And thank you for each and every way you support what God is doing through But God Ministries.

God Bless You!!

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Bondye Konnen

I am a bit delayed in posting the following post. I prepared it right after the Freedom Christian Fellowship team left, but there were a couple of things I had to add in before posting. Life never seems to slow down, however, around Hope Center, so days clicked by and they turned to weeks. So now that i have a few minutes to reflect and edit my post, I’m finally posting my recollections of the week Freedom Christian Fellowship came, and it makes me miss them all over again. We love you guys!!

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The Freedom Christian Fellowship team with some of our Hope Center Family: Brian, Jane, Tom, Bicly, Brenda, Johnny, Jonathan, Phillip, Matthew, Dean, Macey, Junior, Fedna, Rachel, and Anel.

It is never easy to say goodbye to our brothers and sisters in Christ. However, after a full week of more activities than I can count, the team from Freedom Christian Fellowship loaded the bus to head back home, leaving tear stains on my face as I hugged each one and watched them climb the steps of the bus. Telling them goodbye is like letting go of something that is precious to you, because you know you have no choice. All you can do is hold onto the memories and know that your prayers for one another keep you close until next time. Sounds like family right? Well they are indeed family to us. We always cherish their time here and this week was no different.

The pastors that attended the pastors' conference showing off their certificates at the end of the conference.

The pastors that attended the pastors’ conference showing off their certificates at the end of the conference.

Pastors Dean Smith, Brad Smith, and Brian Miller and their team hold a very special place in our hearts and we know Haiti holds a very special place in theirs. Pastor Dean Smith from Freedom Christian Fellowship in Gautier, MS, has been leading pastor’s conferences here in our area for three years now. When he comes, he always brings a team of amazing people with him who show the love of Jesus in many, many ways. The pastors here know he loves them not only because he tells them so, but because he comes back. Tony and I know he genuinely loves us too. He and his brother Brad and their dear friend Brian Miller and ALL of their team members will always hold a dear place in our hearts.

Alex & Rachel lead the Easter Week VBS with the orphanage kids and Rachel & Macey hang out with the kids.

Alex & Rachel lead the Easter Week VBS with the orphanage kids and Rachel & Macey hang out with the kids.

It was a crazy, busy week. Besides the pastor’s conference, the team was also busy with other things happening all over Hope Center. Dean and Brian brought their daughters, Rachel and Macy along this time, and their favorite activity was playing with the kids at the orphanage. Because it was the week before Easter, and the kids were out of school, our intern Rachel had daily activities planned for them leading up to the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday. Every day Alex would lead them in a Bible story, they would sing songs, and they would make a craft that held some sort of significance to the Easter story. While this was going on, Brenda and Jane were leading a Motherhood Seminar.

Jane & Barbara talk with the first mother to arrive at the motherhood seminar. Translator JuJu was a tremendous help at the seminar.

Jane & Barbara talk with the first mother to arrive at the motherhood seminar. Translator JuJu was a tremendous help at the seminar.

I have been planning and looking forward to starting these Motherhood Seminars for quite some time. It’s been a dream of mine for a long time to periodically have teams come and spend a week teaching expectant mothers about pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and newborn care. I mentioned the idea in an email to Brenda before they came, and as Dean said, she took the idea on with a vengeance. She put together an amazing week of loving on these mothers, stressing to them that they were chosen by God to be the mother of this child, and that He had equipped each one of them to be able to care for her baby. There were only five mothers who participated in the seminar this week, but I am sure that as teams come and continue the teaching, more and more will come and learn about how beautiful it is to be a mother. Thank you Brenda and Jane for taking this on! You have started something wonderful!

Tom & Jonathan take care of Esther in the clinic.

Tom & Jonathan take care of Esther in the clinic.

Throughout the week, two of the team members helped in the clinic. Tom and Jonathan were amazing help in the clinic. Unfortunately Tony came down with some sort of virus, so it was great to have someone so knowledgeable and equipped to stand in for him in the clinic. Tom and Jonathan took care of many medical needs in the clinic and Tony didn’t have a thing to worry about. He certainly wanted to be able to be in there working with them, but it was a relief knowing that God had provided capable hands during this time. We are so grateful for the love they showed to the people who entered the doors of our clinic this week.

Phillip & Matthew putting up fans in the breezeway.

Phillip & Matthew putting up fans in the breezeway.

It seems like with almost every team that comes, God provides a handy man in the group because He knows that we have so many needs here that just require the attention of someone who knows how to fix it. This week was no different. We have had fans sitting in the depot for several weeks. Al Subblefield from Pensacola gave them to us to put up in the breezeway to help keep the air moving and provide softer lighting at night. Among many other “fix-it things” that needed to get done, Phillip and Matthew jumped right on the fan installation and did a wonderful job. Throughout the week, they helped with other things as well. They helped Charles and Junior get the post holes dug for the garden fence; they worked on the generator; they helped with VBS for the village kids two days, and one night they even held a youth praise and worship event for teenagers in the village. They were some versatile and busy guys all week! We are grateful for their talents and servant’s heart.

Kelly, Leyna, and Macey with Marie Francis and Yvnante making plates for the pastors' conference.

Kelly, Leyna, and Macey with Marie Francis and Yvnante making plates for the pastors’ conference.

I certainly can’t talk about this week without also mentioning two very special people we had with us who were not a part of the FCF team, but they were definitely a VITAL part of our Hope Center team this week. We have had two short-term interns here with us in the last few weeks, and as always, they have been a HUGE help and made an amazing contribution to the ministry of Hope Center. Kelly Dukes and Leyna Hendley have been here before at different times, but it was definitely God’s plan for them to be here at the same time during this week. Again, God provided who we needed when we needed them, and Leyna and Kelly were right where God wanted them to be….Hope Center.

Kelly practicing her head-balancing skills while taking plates to the pastors' conference

Kelly practicing her head-balancing skills while taking plates to the pastors’ conference

Kelly’s expertise as a paralegal was extremely valuable this week in helping Tony with paperwork in the clinic. Tony has been working hard to get our clinic working under Haiti Ministry of Health standards, and with that comes a LOT of record keeping. Kelly took on the task of entering patient records into the computer and assigning dossier numbers to all of them. She spent HOURS on the papers, and she helped Tony find his way out of a mountain of paper work. Not only did she help with this, but she also took on registration in the pastor’s conference, made the coffee each day for the team and pastor’s conference, helped us prepare lunch plates for all the pastors, as well as many, many other odds and end things that she gladly took on to help out. It’s always good to have Kelly around, and we are so thankful to have had these few weeks with her at Hope Center.

Leyna visiting with Bicly's family in the village.

Leyna visiting with Bicly’s family in the village.

Leyna is one of those people who has a contagious, genuine love for Jesus, and every single person she comes in contact with can see it and feel it in her smile and her touch. I truly believe that she sees every moment she has interacting with people as an opportunity to show the love of Jesus and allow that person to introduce her to a new experience in life. Leyna spent her time here at Hope Center doing many things. She helped Hannah with the girls and homeschooling; she helped in the pharmacy; she helped Vierge and Marie Therese in the kitchen; she helped prepare the lunch plates for the pastor’s conference; and she absolutely LOVED it when she had opportunities to go into the village and connect with people. Leyna and I had three very special occasions when we were able to visit and love on people together. One was when we went to Bicly’s house because his mother had invited us to come eat pigeon! Leyna has an adventurous streak in her, and she loves to experience other cultures. Rachel and I went with her to Bicly’s and we all had a delicious meal of pigeon and bread and sauce sitting at Bicly’s dinner table and enjoying great company. Another special time was when we went back to Bicly’s and shared in worship with his family and neighbors at a revival service they were having. We prayed and sang with them and worshipped our Father together, and I am so thankful for this time she and I shared with these precious people. Lastly, Leyna and I had an opportunity to minister to a young woman on the way home from Bicly’s house, and I think this was probably a highlight in her time here at Hope Center. When we were walking back to Hope Center from Bicly’s house, we came upon a young woman walking on the main road. We began to initiate conversation with her and we found out that she had been to the clinic and needed to go get her husband and go to the hospital in Croix des Bouquets. She didn’t feel well and she had no money to pay for food or transportation to Croix des Bouquets, so she had a very long walk ahead of her. When Leyna and I arrived back at Hope Center, we grabbed up the keys to the truck and a got a little money from Tony and headed out looking for her on the road. We found her, pulled over the truck, and asked her if she wanted a ride. She climbed into the truck and immediately fell apart in tears. It was obvious that she was overwhelmed. I could tell that she had been praying for God to help her, and in minutes, He answered her prayer by sending us to give her a ride. As we rode, we talked about the love of Jesus and how God knows our needs. Along the way, Leyna and I realized we had rushed out of Hope Center without our passports and I didn’t even have my purse or driver’s license. We immediately prayed for protection and favor and trusted God to do just that as we went on our way to Croix des Bouquet. By the time we arrived at the house where her husband was working, she had a totally different countenance. She was smiling, happy, and grateful. Leyna and I had no doubt that God had used us to remind this lady of His love for her and that He provides for our needs.

Rachel playing with the kids at the orphanage

Rachel playing with the kids at the orphanage

To recount every exciting event that happened throughout the week would take forever, so I will spare you the reading. I do, however, want to thank each of you who pray for us and for those who come serve here with us. There is no telling how many lives are changed every single week around here as people share the love of Jesus with people who depend completely on God’s provision for their every single need. Oh that we could all come to that place when we realize that HE is Lord and Bondye Konnen!! (God knows).

The team at dinner sharing some love for Hannah on her birthday. This cookie is for you!! Happy Birthday Hannah!

The team at dinner sharing some love for Hannah on her birthday. This cookie is for you!! Happy Birthday Hannah!

We are thankful for another amazing week with the Freedom Christian Fellowship team and Leyna and Kelly. We look forward to the day you all return and share your love for Jesus with the people of our village.

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Living Stones and Kingdom Work

Some weeks here at Hope Center are quiet. As I sit here writing on my blog, I hear a rooster call in the distance; the guineas in the yard are calling out to let us know that Jillian has arrived; a baby is crying in his mother’s lap while they wait to see the doctor; and Madame Marta is greeting people in the yard as she looks around for trash to pick up. “Ti cafe ak pen souple,” she asks as I step out onto my front door step to say hello. She’s asking for a little coffee and bread for breakfast before she commences with her work. At 85 years old, she comes to Hope Center every day with a bag in her hands, working to keep the place nice and clean to earn chicken feed for her chickens. She’s like the Hope Center Clinic cheerleader in that she walks around among the waiting patients in the morning, greeting them with a kiss on the cheek and asking them how they are doing. Her voice dances with the mountain fresh air and touches my heart. I glance out my front door and see the flower petals waving in the breeze and the empty chair swing spinning in a slow circle. It’s a quiet week here.

Sitting on the love seat in my house, looking out my front door, listening to the sounds of Hope Center

Sitting on the love seat in my house, looking out my front door, listening to the sounds of Hope Center

Other weeks are not so quiet. Last week, Hope Center was one of those not-so-quiet weeks. That’s not a bad thing at all. It’s actually a very good thing. When teams are here, every day begins with a buzz of anticipation as team members prepare for the tasks of ministry they have planned to do. As the day progresses, the team members gather back together for lunch and then dinner and share with one another about the things God did through them over the course of the day. At the end of the week, we are amazed at how God multiplied their efforts to do many great works that will carry on many months and years to come. It’s often too much to recount. This is the case with the Crystal Springs/MSU team. The group from New Zion Baptist Church, some students from Mississippi State University, and our Jacob and his girlfriend Madison all joined together for an amazing Spring Break of ministry at Hope Center in Haiti.

The Crystal Springs team in front of our church at sunset

The Crystal Springs team in front of our church at sunset

Their plans for the week included building benches for the church, hosting VBS, building a house for Johnny’s family, helping with clinic, and hosting a ladies Bible study. With God’s help and provision, they accomplished all of these things and more.

On day one, the buzz of the saw in the yard cranked up early as half the team immediately got to work on making benches. Charles had created a design that is very sturdy and will allow for a hymnal tray to be added to the back of each bench later. These benches will allow us to pack in so many more people in our church as we grow in numbers every week.

Also on the first day, another group of team members loaded up and went into the village to begin work on building Johnny’s family a house. The house they have been living in had three rooms, but only one of the three rooms had a roof, and it was falling in. There was only one working door on the house, and inside was dark and dusty from the mud walls and heat. Their new house has two rooms with a vented roof for air flow and windows to allow for light to come in during the day. It has a locking front door and a concrete floor instead of dirt. It may not seem like much from American standards. but to this family that has endured many a muddy night as the rain poured through their tattered tin roof, it is a blessing from God that they have prayed for for a long time.

In VBS, the team loved on children throughout the village each afternoon, teaching them about the joys and benefits of knowing Jesus. They talked about how Jesus is the light and He shines through us when we let his light shine. They gave out little LED flashlights from Community Bank as a useful reminder of the light of Christ. They also gave out water bottles that said “Jezi se vivan” (Jesus is living water). On the last day, they walked the children down to the well that the team members had fixed in their “spare time” and let the kids fill their water bottles up with fresh, clean water. It was LOTS of fun!!

Ladies Bible study was a huge blessing to the women of our village. They love spending time with the American women, discussing issues important to women and letting God minister to their hearts through song and sharing of the Word. On the last day, the leaders of the Bible study washed the ladies’ feet to demonstrate the love of Christ in us as we minister to one another. It was a touching moment. Even Jess got in on the special time as he washed the feet of a man that came to the bible study and then he and Junior washed one another’s feet. Such a precious time!

Throughout each day and in between all of the planned activities, many team members helped with clinic by working triage, counting pills, and entering information into the computer from patient files. There is always an abundance of activity that goes on behind the scenes each week at Hope Center, and this team jumped to action whenever a need was seen.

I could talk about and post pics of all of the things this team did to minister to the people of our village last week, but time will not allow because it was MUCH. I will list other things below and post a slide show of all of the pics of the week below. Suffice it to say that we are so very thankful that people are willing to be led by God to come serve in our village at Hope Center, Galette Chambon. We do not take lightly the sacrifice it takes to come here and serve. However, we do know that God blesses people who trust in His provision and say YES when he calls them to come serve. And when people come, they allow God to use them in many amazing ways, and those works carry on for many years to come. It’s called KINGDOM work because as people come serve, they are building the Kingdom of God up in a way that has eternal impact in people’s lives.1 Peter 2:5 says, “You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” When teams come here to work, they are like living stones that build up the kingdom of God. Their sacrifice is an offering that is acceptable and blessed by God. Long after a team leaves, the memories of laughter, prayer, worship, and hard work echo through our minds, and through the minds of the people they touch, and we are all blessed.

Other things the team did: (I’m sure I don’t have a complete list here either!)

  • Fixed the village well that has been broken
  • Worked on electrical issues within Hope Center
  • Installed an outlet in the ag missionary house
  • Worked on the ambulance and bus
  • Helped with ESL classes and Creole Literacy class
  • Fixed a door latch on the mission house
  • Fixed the deep freezer hinge
  • Changed oil in the skid steer
  • Visited people in the village
  • Watered trees in the village
  • Built a chicken coup
  • Special VBS at orphanage
  • Shared in song during worship service at church
  • Helped deliver a baby at 3:45 a.m.

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Good News and Challenges

One exciting thing about being a Christ follower is that He is always shocking our socks off with the way He works through His people to bless others. A few weeks back, we put out a post asking people to give to sponsor 200 children in school, and guess what! We have 200 children sponsored for school tuition for the upcoming school year! Hallelujah!! It’s a pretty cool thing when we begin to pray, God prompts the hearts of His people, His people follow through, and BAM! It’s done! This is so exciting! I live in a world of miracles, and I am pretty pumped about this place. Ha! soloman's kids

So that was the good news….Now for the challenge…..

Now that we are able to cover the tuition for 200 children in our village, their needs are not completely filled. In Haiti, children must wear closed toed shoes, carry their books (that they must purchase) in a back pack, and wear a uniform. The parents in our village don’t have the funds to buy these things. Just last week, we kicked off a tennis shoe and back pack drive hosted by Crossgates Baptist Church in Brandon, MS. If you live near Brandon and you have new or gently used tennis shoes and/or back packs, please, please drop them off at Crossgates Baptist Church. There is a big trash can in the lobby that has a sign on it. Put them in there. Thanks!! 

Now suppose you don’t live near Brandon or you don’t have tennis shoes or back packs to give. You can still help if God prompts you to help! There are several ways. 

1. You can go to http://www.butgodministries.com and click “Donate” and choose “scholarship” on the drop down menu and give. All funds that continue to be given to our scholarship fund will go to help pay for uniforms and books for the children. 

2. T-shirts!! If you know of someone who owns a screen print shop that would we willing to donate 250 t-shirts to one of our two sponsored schools, please, please send me an email or reply to this post. (tnmwest@gmail.com) Of course, you need to check with the business first to make sure they are on board. Ha! The principals of each school have agreed to allow their children to wear an alternative uniform that is a t-shirt in their school colors. If we have enough for each child in the school to get one, no one will be without a uniform and feel different from everyone else because they can’t afford it. We are working to have uniforms made for all of the children, but in the meantime, if they can wear a t-shirt, that would be great! Call someone you know that owns a screen print company and ask. It’s an opportunity to give a huge blessing to school children in Haiti that wouldn’t be able to afford it otherwise. 

3. If you sew, or know someone who does, and you would like to help us make uniforms for school children in Haiti, please let me know. We are working on getting the sizes of the children who need uniforms, and we are also working on getting the fabric and patterns. This has turned out to be a bigger task than we imagined, but God will provide what we need when we need it, so no worries. When we acquire the patterns and material, we will get the information out and let people get to sewing! I just need a list of willing tailors!! 🙂  Email me at tnmwest@gmail.com.

johel's kidsPhilippians 4:19 says, “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” It is this very promise that we share with the Haitian families daily who are our neighbors and friends at Hope Center in Galette Chambon. We know that God knows their needs and He is already moving His people to give in order to supply those needs. If one person refuses to obey, He simply moves someone else to receive the blessing of giving. Regardless, He moves and people give. We have complete faith and trust in Him to do it. 

People ask me all the time, “What do you all need down there?” Well, the answer to that question varies, but SPECIFICALLY, right now we need funds for books, tennis shoes, back packs, school t-shirts, and uniforms. GENERALLY, we need people to pray and be willing to ACT upon the movement of God upon their heart. Remember: God WILL move people to help His children. The question is, is He moving you? If He is, then you will not regret acting on it.  

Proverbs 11:25 says, “The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped.” We have learned that there is no greater blessing of joy than to give of ourselves to help others in need. There are many, many needs in this world, and I pray you will seek God to know how He can use you to meet those needs. When you say, “Yes,” the blessings begin to flow. 

Thank you for your prayers; thank you for your obedience; thank you for your love for our little village of Galette Chambon. Lives are being changed here, and a generation is learning what it means to trust in the Lord with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength.  

God bless you all! We are so very thankful for you!!

~Tony & Mickie West

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Our First Hope Center Baby!!

Friday, February 8, 2013, started out like any other day at Hope Center. It was the last clinic day of a long, tiring week, and both Tony and Vladimir were both looking forward to finishing the week and enjoying a restful weekend. As usual, Tony got up early and went down to the clinic to set up and pray for all of the patients he would see throughout the day. Soon Vladimir joined him, and the two of them prayed together before telling G to let the first group of people in who had been waiting patiently for the clinic to open. The day progressed like any other, and as the sun began to kiss the mountain top of Petionville, there were twelve patients left, and it looked like they may even finish early. As Tony looked outside to call in the next patient, he noticed a woman making her way through the gate and slowly approaching the clinic. She was a mother in labor, and immediately Tony realized that this was not going to end up being just another ordinary day at Hope Center. This was a day he had been praying about for many months. It was the day that the first baby would be born at Hope Center. Suddenly he wasn’t tired anymore.

Tony holding the first baby to be born at Hope Center

Tony holding the first baby to be born at Hope Center

He met the woman half way as she progressed through the courtyard and helped her into the clinic to get her comfortable before taking the next patient. He helped her to the exam room in the back of the clinic where he could assess her and then let her rest in privacy while he finished with the rest of the patients waiting. Shortly after arriving, her water broke, and after checking her again, Tony told the mother to prepare for a long evening because she was not dilated very much. She then explained to Tony that she didn’t think it would be as long as he thought because she tends to deliver quickly. Realizing she sounded like she had quite a bit of experience in giving birth, he asked her how many children she had. Her answer was six! This child would be her 7th! A bit of relief came over Tony as he realized that his first delivery would be with a pro.

Baby care

After a little while of resting in the back room, the mother decided it was time to get up and walk around. Tony helped her down and out the door and sent her into the courtyard to walk around with the gentleman (midwife) who came with her to the clinic. Tony resumed seeing the other patients, looking forward to getting them all taken care of and on their way so he could focus on delivering his first baby. Suddenly, with three patients left, the security guard came to the clinic door and said, “You better get out here. She’s having the baby.” Tony told him to get her to come on back into the clinic so she could have the baby in the room he had prepared for her. Then G replied, “No, she can’t. She’s having the baby now!” So Tony rushed out to find the mother in the courtyard, with the midwife hovering over her, and the baby already on it’s way! There was no time to move inside the clinic. Mama was right! She was delivering fast!

Tony and the midwife tend to the newborn baby

Tony and the midwife tend to the newborn baby

He rushed to her side to help the midwife with the rest of the delivery and take care of the beautiful baby girl and mother.  After getting the baby all cleaned up, he put some drops in her eyes and handed her over to her mother. It was the most amazing feeling. A baby had been born at Hope Center! Tony went to the storage room and picked out a few baby girl outfits and a newborn blanket and returned to baby and mother.

Tony found a cute little dress and blanket for the baby.

Tony found a cute little dress and blanket for the baby.

Shortly after giving birth, the mother was up and walking around, preparing to walk back home to the rest of her family. Amazing! This woman had just given birth to a baby between 7 and 8 pounds, and now (after many pictures and celebration) she was about to walk home! Now that’s a miracle right there folks! This mother of 6 arrived at the clinic in labor and two hours later she had given birth to a beautiful, healthy baby girl and was now walking home with her baby! Our Hope Center pastor, Daniel, gathered everyone together and prayed for mother and child before sending them on their way.

 

Tony prepares the baby to go with her mother

This is the mother (who just gave birth!) preparing to make a 20 minute walk back to her house with her baby!

Tony returned to his last three remaining patients, thanked them for patiently waiting, tended to their needs, gave them each a pack of crackers and sent them on their way as well. What started out as any other day at Hope Center Clinic, ended up being a very special day. God had blessed us with our very first Hope Center baby! Certainly not an ordinary day!

 

Things rarely go as planned in Haiti, including birth. Here's Tony's neatly prepared delivery room....AFTER the baby was born....still untouched. Ha!

Things rarely go as planned in Haiti, including birth. Here’s Tony’s neatly prepared delivery room….AFTER the baby was born….still untouched. Ha!

Tony plans to go visit mom and baby tomorrow, and she wants him to help them name their little girl. He plans to suggest they name her Hope because she represents what God has brought to this village through Hope Center. God has given the people here Hope, and He is blessing the lives of countless individuals through Hope Center. God is good…..ALL the time!

What a blessing! What a miracle!

What a blessing! What a miracle!

 

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February 9, 2013 · 6:31 am

Our God is MORE Than Enough!

        I am so excited to report to you that last weekend, we moved six more families in to houses on the Hill at Hope Center. It is always a glorious day when these families move out of those nasty, dirt floor tents that are crammed in the middle of the noisy city. The moment they walk into their new house, they become overwhelmed with thanksgiving. It’s such a blessing to be a part of it. It’s such a blessing to be a part of EVERYTHING God is doing at Hope Center because He is doing SO MANY amazing things!!

Daniel, our new pastor at Hope Center, takes a picture of Stan Buckley and one of our new residents on the Hill at Hope Center as she receives the keys to her new home. Thank you Lord for Your provision!!!

Daniel, our new pastor at Hope Center, takes a picture of Stan Buckley and one of our new residents on the Hill at Hope Center as she receives the keys to her new home. Thank you Lord for Your provision!!!

          When Tony told me they were scheduled to move last weekend, I said, “Oh how I wish I could be there to help!!” The next morning I had an email from him with a flight he had put on hold for me. I knew that because he took the time to find a flight that would have me there to help but get me back in time for Jacob’s first round of the playoffs, it was important to him that I be there too. Saying “ok” to booking a last minute flight was a bit scary, but I stepped out in faith that God would provide and I booked it. I am SOOOOO glad that I did. I’m so glad that I have learned not to cramp God up in a piggy bank either!  I know He wanted me to go, so I know He will provide me with the funds to cover the expense. I have told so many people that if they are called to go on a mission trip, and they say they are going to go when they can afford it, Satan is going to see to it that they can never afford it!  That’s one area of faith I am so glad I have learned obedience in. Anyway, I am very glad I went!!
Miss Marthe, age 82, climbed up in the cab of the JAC truck and waited with a smile, for the move to her new home on the Hill in Galette Chambon.

Miss Marthe, age 82, climbed up in the cab of the JAC truck and waited with a smile, for the move to her new home on the Hill in Galette Chambon.

At the tent city in Delmas loading up the JAC truck for the first trip back to Hope Center.

At the tent city in Delmas loading up the JAC truck for the first trip back to Hope Center.

Moving the families in took two trips, the first of which had us sitting at a stand still on the road for an hour because a large truck had overturned and was blocking traffic…nothing new in Haiti. Then after they finally got the truck out of the way, a guy with a bulldozer decided it was time to do some road construction, so he held up traffic another 30 minutes while he scooped and shoved muddy rock around up and down a 40 yard section of the highway. We finally got through after roasting in the sun for a while, but all of that couldn’t suppress the smiles of the families sitting on top of all of their personal belongings piled up on the back of our JAC truck. It was the first day of a new beginning, and everyone was very excited to get moving.
Truck overturned on the road.

Truck overturned on the road.

Bulldozer working the road after truck overturned.

Bulldozer working the road after truck overturned.

Tony meets with Yonnell Hyppolite and his family while neighboring children come to welcome the new family to the Hill.

Tony meets with Yonnell Hyppolite and his family while neighboring children come to welcome the new family to the Hill.

  I also got a chance to work with the two new Hope Center cooks and housekeeper. After they were hired, we discovered not only do they not know a lick of English, but they also do not read or write! We are slowly but surely overcoming those obstacles though, and the fact that they are so appreciative of the work they have been given, the opportunity they have to be a part of God’s work AND make income for their families, and the knowledge they are gaining is so refreshing. They are so eager to please and do their absolute best. Saturday evening, after dinner was done and the kitchen was cleaned, they washed their aprons, hung them to dry, then headed home – a short walk up the hill. I went into the kitchen to check things out, and the first thing I noticed was that it was SPOTLESS. There was not one thing out of place, the counters were completely clean, and food for Sunday was placed strategically on the top shelve, neatly and covered, ready to prepare when they returned. We have had our moments of miscommunication at times, but huge progress has already been made.
Sainte-Vierge and Marie Therese, our new Hope Center cooks are so thankful for their jobs at Hope Center. When they first received their new aprons, they didn't put them on until AFTER they cooked dinner because they didn't want to get them dirty. Now they know that they are designed to help them keep their clothes from getting dirty so they wear them with pride! They wash them out in bleach water every night and hang them up to dry for work the next day. Thank you Lord for leading us to these two women. Please pray for continued understanding and clear communication as they learn so many new things required with their job. Before working at Hope Center, they had never used a stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, or washing machine and dryer. Life suddenly went from hard but simple, to complicated yet convenient. It was a lot to learn in a short period of time though. They have thanked God over and over again for giving them so much new knowledge....things you and I take for granted. :)

Sainte-Vierge and Marie Therese, our new Hope Center cooks are so thankful for their jobs at Hope Center. Thank you Lord for leading us to these two women. Please pray for continued understanding and clear communication as they learn so many new things required with their job. Before working at Hope Center, they had never used a stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, or washing machine and dryer. Life suddenly went from hard but simple, to complicated yet convenient. It was a lot to learn in a short period of time though. They have thanked God over and over again for giving them so much new knowledge….things you and I take for granted. 🙂

As a gift for their hard work, we gave all three of them a pretty shower bag equipped with towel, washcloth, and soap so that they could come in and get a nice hot shower before working each day. You would have thought we had given them all keys to their own brand new Mercedes! They hugged and kissed me on the cheek and thanked me over and over again. Sometimes it’s easy to take for granted simple conveniences like a hot shower with not just any soap but “pretty soap” to clean with. People here have to carry their bath water up a hill in a 5 gallon bucket and find a way to bathe in privacy behind their houses. This is sometimes an impossible task.  Realizing this, we decided to bless them with these shower bags and tell them that they are welcome to use the Hope Center facilities. The next day they all showed up early, got their showers, and began their day refreshed. By Monday, when I was preparing to leave, the ladies were busy cooking dinner in the kitchen. When they realized I was going to have to leave before dinner, they grabbed me by the hand and pulled me into the kitchen where four pots of food were bubbling hot on the stove. They scooped out a serving from one of the pots and put it in a bowl with a fork for me to take with me on the way to the airport. It was delicious!! They were so proud, and I was so relieved to confirm in my mind that my husband will not starve during this kitchen transition. Ha!
This is Joresse. He has a huge burden for the education of the young people in his village. He is a translator for Hope Center, and on the weekends, he teaches English, music, and computer at a school in the village. He does not get paid a thing for his time, but he knows that as he helps educate children in the village, their lives will improve.

This is Joresse. He has a huge burden for the education of the young people in his village. He is a translator for Hope Center, and on the weekends, he teaches English, music, and computer at a school in the village. He does not get paid a thing for his time, but he knows that as he helps educate children in the village, their lives will improve.

Before leaving Monday, we made a quick trip back to the back of the village to a little school where one of our translators teaches English on the weekends. His name is Joresse and he teaches young Haitians English, music, and  computer classes for free in his spare time. He has such a heart for the educational progress of the children of his village. His recent request for English Picture Dictionaries was miraculously met when he received exactly enough books from people ordering them through Amazon and sending them to But God Ministries. We delivered them on Monday before I left, and the students were thrilled! He is pretty sure the classes are going to grow now that God has not only provided books but He has opened the door to send American missionaries to the school often to help with classes. Joresse did ask me to get the word out that they need laptops for their computer class. Right now they teach a class of 15 on one very old desktop computer. They not only teach the basics of computer usage, but also Word, Excel, and Powerpoint….but again, on that ONE computer. I told him that I would get the word out and then pray that God would move to provide more computers. If you know of anyone who has a laptop they would like to donate to us to take to their school, please let me know. Of course, it needs to work and have decent battery capacity since they don’t have constant, reliable electricity. I know that God will provide for their needs as we pray, and Joresse knows that too. I am so very thankful for his servant’s heart.

We put out the word that Joresse's school needed textbooks and God moved people to respond. We received enough books to give every current student a book. We presented the new textbooks to Joresse and some of his students and they were so thankful. More books will be needed as more and more students begin taking the classes.

Presenting the new textbooks to Joresse and some of his students. They were so thankful. More books will be needed as more and more students begin taking the classes.

Thank you once again for your prayers and support as we continue on this journey. As I have been writing this post, a song by Lincoln Brewster has been in my head that says, “You’re amazing – More than amazing – Forever our God – You’re more than enough.” Our God is indeed more than enough. We have cried out to Him, and He has heard our prayers. As we have sought Him with everything we are, He has kept his promises, and he has been faithful to provide for all of our needs. Words cannot describe how amazed we continue to be by the love the Father has for his children…He is indeed enough.

Walking in His Steps,

Tony, Mickie, Jonathan, and Jacob West

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The Start of Something New

Well, the new year is underway and there are so many new things going on at Hope Center! To start the post off, here’s a picture Tony took of Hope Center from up on a nearby mountain. He and Bicly went for a walk today and they took this picture. Isn’t it beautiful? Our Father is an amazing artist, and the majesty of his creation is a constant reminder of His love for us!

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So, as the new year begins at Hope Center, there are many new faces and things happening in our midst! First of all, God has blessed us with two new cooks at Hope Center. These two ladies are from two of the families who moved to our village from the tent city, and now they are employed!! Hallelujah! Barbara came down to help them learn all about cooking for the teams who will be constantly visiting Hope Center in the coming months. Barbara certainly had her work cut out for her! She not only needed to teach them healthy cleaning and cooking practices, but simple things like how to use an oven, refrigerator, & dishwasher! But they are enthusiastic about their jobs and are eager to learn! Please pray for these two ladies. Their names are Saint-Vierge and Marie Therese.

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Another new thing going on around Hope Center is the building of the church/school! Here is a picture of the beginnings of the foundation being prepared. Tony sent this picture to me last week. You won’t believe what all they have accomplished since then! I will upload a video of them working on the foundation as well. It is amazing how quickly they get the job done! There are several exciting things about this church being built. First of all, it will provide ministry, evangelism, and discipleship to countless Haitians in our village. I cannot wait to start having baptism services in our church! We already have at least 100 new believers to baptize once we get it ready! Secondly, the building of this church has provided jobs for many men in our village who had no income before this project began. This means healthy, happy families! Thirdly, this church represents yet another partnership in the ever-growing But God Ministries family. God asked First Baptist Church of Brandon to adopt this project, and in obedience, they are teaming up with BGM to get it done. It’s so exciting to see God expand the ministry He has begun through But God Ministries. God is meeting so many needs in our little village of Galette Chambon, and it is such a blessing to be a part of it! And what’s doubly exciting is to know that He is just getting started!!

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Another something new is God’s provision of food. The families who moved into the houses on the hill have been harvesting fruits and vegetables from the gardens they planted after moving in. Tony decided to get in on the fun and he has been growing some vegetables of his own! Here is our tomato plant that has now reached over 5 feet tall and has been producing beautiful tomatoes. He also planted some black beans that he had left over from a bag of dried beans we bought a few months ago. He planted these beans last week, and now he has over 100 plants already! The soil here is amazing! It is so exciting and rewarding to be able to grow your own food. We are so very thankful that God has blessed the soil in our village and that people are able to provide sustenance for their families.

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As we begin this new year and this new life for our family, we are learning that our God meets ALL of our needs, and He is faithful. As He blesses these beautiful people in Galette Chambon, Ganthier, Haiti, He also blesses our family, and we are excited to be walking with Him on this amazing journey. It is our prayer that as He continues to move in this village, the people here learn to trust His promises more and more and know His deep, abiding love for us all. It’s a new day in Galette Chambon, and our loving God is moving in a mighty way. Please continue to pray for our family as we serve  and our friends in this village as they continue to experience the Father’s love for them. We have many, many teams preparing to come serve at Hope Center in the coming months. Please pray that God will provide for their needs as they prepare to come serve, and pray that God will prepare the hearts of those who will be blessed by their visit here. Most of all, pray that our great God is honored and glorified in each and every thing we do. Thank you all so very much for your faithfulness to give and serve and pray.

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January 13, 2013 · 2:34 am

Latest Newsletter from Stan Buckley – GREAT STUFF!!

I just read Stan Buckley’s latest newsletter about Hope Center in Haiti, and I just                            HAD to share it with everyone who reads our blog. Many of you probably already                               get Stan’s newsletter, but if you do not, please, please take some time to read                                   over the exciting things happening at Hope Center in Haiti!! I am so excited that                                     God continues to move in Gallet Chambon and it is such a blessing to be a part of                                              this!! Please continue to keep this ministry in your prayers and support our                                        ministry if God is leading you to do so. Read on and be blessed………    ~Mickie

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Sharing the love of Jesus Christ through building sustainable communities around the world . . .
November 30, 2012

He Walked Five Hours

His teeth were killing him but what could he do? He lives in a tiny village in the mountains of Haiti with no medical care anywhere close. Day after day he lived with the ever-present pain. Then, one day he heard about a medical clinic. A free medical clinic. But it was a long way from his village in the mountains and the only transportation he had were his two feet.

So, last week, he left his house at 2:00 a.m., walking in the dark to the medical clinic of But God Ministries. There, he saw a medical provider who pulled five, rotten, aching teeth. Within minutes his pain was gone. His life improved instantly. He was pain-free for the first time in months.

Pediatric dentist, Drew Middleton, from Hattiesburg, MS
Dentist Leigh Kuyrkendall from Hattiesburg, MS pulling a tooth

6,000 and Counting

The story of the man who walked five hours is just one of many. Almost every day men and women and boys and girls come to our clinic. So far, over 6,000 have come. They come with fevers, stomach aches, rashes, high blood pressure, rotten teeth, pregnant bodies, and countless other challenges. And every day, Tony West and our visiting medical-dental teams become the hands of Jesus and demonstrate the love of Christ to hurting people.

Nurse Stacie Hood from Jackson, MS holding a sick child. We ultimately transported this child to a hospital in Port-au-Prince.
Recent Teams

The month of November saw two medical teams from Mississippi. The first team was from First Presbyterian Church in Hattiesburg. Their team included a dentist, a pediatric dentist, a dermatologist, and an OB-GYN. They treated over 500 patients in the medical clinic and over 100 dental patients.

The second team was from both First Baptist Jackson and First Baptist Hattiesburg. This team included an internist and two nurses. They also saw over 500 patients. In addition, members of this team built a house, conducted Vacation Bible School, and showed the Jesus Film every night.


Dan Mitchell, dermatologist from Thomasville, GA

Best Part

For over a year we have been sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with countless people in Central Haiti. We have shared it in Bible studies, worship services, Bible schools, the Jesus Film, at the medical-dental clinic, and during one-on-one encounters. Lots of sowing has taken place.
But last week there was some reaping. There was a glorious harvest as almost 100 people professed faith in Christ. These were not merely groups of people raising their hands, but individuals making strong decisions to follow Jesus. To paraphrase Jesus in Luke 15:10, there was rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God when those Haitians repented and turned to Christ last week.

Children at VBS hearing the gospel and doing fun crafts

Sharing Jesus with people waiting to see the doctors

Getting an Education

Because so many Christians in America sponsored children for scholarships, we have children at two different schools. I was able to visit these two schools this week and see the children.

Children on break at Pastor Joel’s school

Teacher leading her class at Pastor Joel’s school

Students learning at Salomon’s school. They are trying to build a new building because this one is in such bad shape.
The Importance of a Job

I was talking to a Haitian man earlier this week about his job as a security guard at the orphanage. He was very excited to be working. He said to me, “When you are working your home is happy.”

He’s right. Our homes are happy when we can work and provide food and shelter and clothing and the basics of life. That’s true in America and it’s true in Haiti.

This past Tuesday I was able to announce that 11 men from the area would be hired on Monday to make blocks using the brick press. The blocks will be used to build the church we will start building in January. Eleven families will be greatly blessed as a result of the opportunity to work. Eleven homes will be much happier!

Beautiful Children

Everywhere we look in Haiti we see beautiful, smiling children. While we are seeking to provide opportunities in Haiti today, ultimately our work is for the futures of these children and their children.

Their names are Tessie, Ernise, and Mirline. You have to
love their smiles!
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Christmas Giving Made Easy

Anyone stressed out over Christmas shopping? If you want a stress free way to shop and, at the same time, make a difference in someone’s life, you can give a contribution to But God Ministries in the name of a friend or loved one. If you do, we will be happy to send a beautiful acknowledgement card informing them of your gift.

All you have to do is click here and give online. In the section that says, “Add special instructions to the seller,” give us the name and address of the person to whom you want us to send the acknowledgement card. Your shopping will be done, we’ll handle the rest, and the work in Haiti will continue. Or, you can give online and then email us the name of the people to whom we should send the acknowledgement cards. You can email us at cynthia@butgodministries.com.

Also, if you want to give automatically each month, all you have to do is sign up one time. Just click here to give each month ($25, $50, $100, $200, or any amount you choose) or to give a one-time contribution. You can also mail your gift to: But God Ministries, 1440 North State Street, Jackson, MS, 39202.

Can’t Wait To See What God Does Next,
Stan Buckley
Executive Director
But God Ministries

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