Building a Church, Building a Bridge...

In mid March we had the opportunity to go down to the Dominican with Crosspoint Community Church. We worked alongside them in constructing a church that will serve as a tool for Moise Jean and his congregation. It is exciting work for Vicki and I because this church supports us too and this Partnership with Moise is one we were blessed to help develop with the leadership at Crosspoint. Overall they have committed around $100,000 for this project even before they had secured a more permanent location for their own building (they are a recent church plant within the last 4 years or so).

Moise Jean and Ryan Bult from Crosspoint

As we worked on pouring the floor of this building I reflected on the potential of this place we were making for Moise and his congregation. This is more than just a building. It is a potential bridge between cultural enemies.

You see, Moise is Haitian and he serves a Haitian migrant working community that has come to be somewhat established in Santiago, the second largest city in the Dominican Republic. Moise would willingly serve Dominicans in his church as well but they wont have much to do with him. There is a deeply entrenched racist ideology in Dominican culture. Haitians will often respond to racism with racism which is typical of the unredeemed human condition. However, this is not the case with Moise. He knows both the implications of fallenness and redemption. The Kingdom of God means more to him then national or racial ties, then the implications of a volatile political history between two countries bound together by the same geographic space. He knows that nationalism, hatred, prejudice, and pride are rooted in sin and that apart from Christ’s healing they remain unchallenged, unaltered, and unrepented of. He is aware of why his enemies are his enemies and he forgives and loves them just the same.

Moise’s understanding of the Gospel is why this building is both a Church and a Bridge. As teams come to serve Moise they are also serving the broader Dominican community that surrounds his Church. This building will ultimately serve them too because Crosspoint intends to help finance a nutrition center there that will serve both Haitian and Dominican children under Moise’s direction and leadership. Once the building is complete, we will be able to host medical clinics in that community that will serve Haitians and Dominicans alike. Our hope and our prayer is that the Dominicans will begin to understand that the goodness that has come into their community would not be there if it was not for the existence of the Haitian Church. We hope that the testimony of service growing out of Moise’s Church will soften hearts and transform minds as they are confronted with tangible expressions of God’s love through people they would typically be at odds with.

“From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us.”
2 Corinthians 5:16-19

Moise understands what it means to forsake a human point of view in light of the Gospel. He knows he has been entrusted with the ministry of reconciliation and accepts it with all of its hardships. Please join us in praying for his protection, his wisdom, and his impact in Brisa Del Campo (the community where we are building the church). Moise and his congregation have difficult, but blessed work ahead of them.