While in the city, Jovani met Godwin. Haitian by background, but raised for most of his life in Miami, Godwin came to follow Jesus as a young child, through a Youth for Christ ministry. Thinking he was missing out on the fun life, he turned away from Christ in middle school and high school, getting involved in drugs, crime, and gangs. It was a choice and lifestyle that eventually landed him in prison, a “living hell”, he called it. But that wasn’t enough to turn his life around. After jail, he went back into the only life he knew, selling drugs and becoming addicted himself. At the same time, he was crying out to God to save him from his life.
Then the earthquake hit in 2010 and it shook Godwin to life. The quake killed 300,000 people, left 1.5 million homeless, and now more than half of the population of Haiti is under the age of twenty. Godwin felt God calling him to Haiti.
Overnight his life changed; his addiction was gone
and he reconnected to Youth for Christ in Miami. Eight years later, Godwin met Jovani.
Jovani and Godwin became friends, so much so that Jovani began following Godwin everywhere! Jovani eats what Godwin eats, goes where Godwin goes, is part of the ministry trainings that Godwin is doing. Jovani is there as Godwin shares Jesus. “Everyone sees Jovani as just a normal guy,” Godwin says, “But he is really a disciple.” Godwin hopes that he and the Youth for Christ ministry will attract many more like Jovani, who learn and live Jesus to the youth of Haiti.
“I want young people in Haiti to see that a life with Jesus is better than what they are living,”
Godwin shares. “There are a lot of non-profits working in Haiti. They do their work and sprinkle a little Jesus on top. What makes us different is we come with Jesus first. We believe that through a relationship with Christ, we can change.”
Though the new ministry is still in the pioneering stage, doors are opening. Already a weekly kids’ club meets with 50 to 120 younger kids where they are fed, play games, and hear about Jesus. A team has been trained and is ready to begin an outreach program for older high school students.
Godwin is raising the financial support needed for the ministry in Haiti. He is talking with people and trusting God to provide the remaining support he needs, including funds for a vehicle that can get around the treacherous mountain and river roads of Haiti.
Godwin finishes with this:
“if thousands of young people came to have a relationship with Christ, it could change the whole island.”