We had the special privilege this past week of attending the 6th annual crusade of Pastor Cesar’s network of churches. Pastor Cesar is the senior (Haitian) pastor of a large church in St. Marc, and has been instrumental in starting and/or supporting a total of eight churches in the area. Every April about one thousand Haitians from these eight churches come together for five days of teaching, preaching, worship, and fellowship. They meet Wednesday through Sunday for evening services 6:00 – 10:00 pm, and every morning 9:00 am – 1:00 pm for teaching and training of all ages. The theme for this year’s crusade was ‘Jou a rive’, which means “The Time Has Arrived” – taken from Ephesians 5:16.
Saturday morning was the annual baptism service – the only baptism these churches do each year! This year about 70 Haitians were baptized, which we understand is typical. All those being baptized are dressed in white. Three pastors wade out into the ocean, and another three young men walk the folks being baptized out to the pastors one at a time. Immediately after the believer is immersed, the helpers place a white sheet around the shoulders of the one being baptized and walk them back to the shore. During this whole time, fellow believers are singing hymns on the beach. It’s a very unique and special experience – a time of great rejoicing and praising God. What a blessing it is to witness these followers of Jesus publicly identifying with their Savior and declaring to the world that they are children of the King!