Haiti Thrives: Disciple-Making Leads to 4,000 Believers

For several years before the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Mike Brister ran a school for 300 children. Yet years before this—in 1991--Mike and I became friends when he attended our Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry training at Texas Super Summer. Afterwards, we had several serious conversations about how to implement this strategy in his church in Center, Texas. His challenge: no adults stepped up to become part of his Leadership Team. But with Mike’s persistent passion adults started buying in, and eventually thirty adults were investing in discipling students. 

Fast forward to November 2018…when Mike told me this story of his Haiti ministry.
"During a trip to Guibert, Haiti in 2010 I shared an overview of Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry with some adults leading youth at several churches. They responded enthusiastically, desiring further training. I committed to return, and gave them their JFYM assignments. Yet upon my return, the leaders had moved on to other locations, one even to Spain. Discouraged, I thought all was lost.
However, over the next several years I continued the JFYM training with pastor Jean Alix Paul--in the original group. Later he sensed God leading him to start a new church in Petionville, Haiti--in the mountains. They decided to call the church “The Church of Small Groups”, and, just as I had trained Pastor Jean Alix to do, they followed the Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry strategy for the entire church!

When the earthquake hit, many people from the capital of Port-Au-Prince relocated to the mountains. Agape Church launched in January of 2014. In January 2018, they held their four-year anniversary celebration--with over 4,000 people in attendance!   

When I brought a team to Agape Church in March 2018, Jean Alix explained how the church Leadership Team operates weekly. Jean Alix’ staff team prepared a discipleship lesson, and equipped the small group leaders in that lesson. Then they meet with their group of ten to disciple them. This has resulted in a life-transforming church with disciple-makers who go to their neighborhoods, build relationships with non-believers, and share the gospel. 

During the year, they hold several services to communicate the gospel with a goal of 300 non-believers attending because of a relationship with someone in a small group. The small group leaders tell their stories of coming to Christ. Then people gather with a leader they know, and engage in a Gospel-related conversation. Those who receive Jesus immediately join a small group for discipleship.
Reflecting on this, I remembered the French copy of Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry I had given Jean Alix, and then trained him how to use it--years ago! That reminded me of Ecclesiastes 11:1-- Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again. How humbling for me to see how the little Bread of Life I cast on the waters, after many days , multiplied abundantly through the ministry of Agape Church in Petionville, Haiti! …And I often wonder what might have happened to the “bread” that went to Spain?"
Thank you, Mike, and all the leaders who have cast the bread of Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry on the water over the years. And we praise God in advance for so many who, in the future, will cast their bread on the waters through Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry Online. 

Thank you, partners, for allowing us to make this story possible—
and so many more!

Jesus is Lord,