Haiti. It’s a desperately poor nation still gripped by the spirit of voodoo. Even before the January 12, 2010, earthquake, economically, socially, and spiritually, Haiti was in great need. But there is hope. Evangelicals are growing in number on this island. Churches and the various denominations are working together like never before to bring the light of the Gospel to needy Haitians. And Christian radio is making a difference.
It has been 30 years since my last trip to Haiti. A lot has changed in our world during that time. Neighborhoods. Technology. Family. The world. Yet in Haiti, some things remain the same. I travelled to Cape Haitian in the north of this small island country late last year, documenting the work at Radio 4VEH, and later the work of Radio Lumière in Port au Prince. These two stations benefitted from the 2011 NRB Convention offering, to bring sound teaching and the light of the Gospel to the people. As the association’s liaison to international broadcasters, my job is to encourage them in their work and find assistance to help them be more effective.
Much aid has poured into Haiti from around the world since the massive 7.0 earthquake – centered just 16 miles from Port au Prince. Christian ministries, always active in this island nation that shares Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic, were also quickly on the scene, sharing help and hope. Over 50 strong aftershocks continued for weeks. Most reports say over 300,000 died, over 300,000 were injured, and over one million were left homeless. The visual images are locked into everyone’s minds, and the news video was gripping.
In praying for Haiti, we have encouraged our NRB members to also pray for the country’s radio ministries. The encyclopedic prayer guide, Operation World, says, “Christian radio is possibly the most effective tool for reaching and discipling Haitians.” It goes on to detail the work of both Radio Lumière and Radio 4VEH – and notes that a high proportion of the entire population listen to these two stations. Couple that with the programs beamed into Haiti by TWR and others, and there is much cause for hope. NRB has done a good thing in assisting these stations in their mission.
Challenges remain, though. Vandalism of towers and transmitters, sporadic electricity, and general economic challenges are barriers that both of these stations face frequently. There is still much resistance to the proclamation of the Gospel, both practically and spiritually. Yet change is happening in Haiti. Christian radio is sharing Hope. The Gospel of Christ is impacting lives, and hearts are turning from the kingdom of darkness to the Light of the World… Jesus.
Dr. Ron Harris, Sr. Vice President for Strategic Partnerships
Click here to learn more about NRB’s important international work.
PHOTOS ABOVE: (1) Joyful children hear of God’s love from faithful Christians in their village, touched by Radio 4VEH. (2) Tim Whitehead of Galcom International shares Christ and a radio. (3) Dr. Ron Harris (left), NRB Sr. Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, stands with a Haitian Baptist pastor who is distributing radios and sharing Christ in his neighborhood.