Monday, February 12, 2007

Interesting Take on Haiti's Problems

Haiti Suffers in Spiritual Darkness
By George ThomasCWNews
December 27, 2004 – Two hundred years ago, a witchdoctor dedicated the island nation of Haiti to the devil. Since that time, many Haitians believe they've been living under a Satanic curse. As you'll see, in the first half of a two-part story, Voodoo does indeed rule the lives of many Haitians.From a distance, the tiny tropical island in the Caribbean looks like a great vacation destination. Its tropical weather, sandy beaches, green valleys and breath-taking views offer visitors a taste of heaven on Earth.
But the closer you get, the more this heaven on Earth, feels and looks like hell on Earth.
I asked Eris Labady, a pastor who oversees 15 churches in Haiti, “How would you describe Haiti today?”
Eris Labady said, “A sick nation who needs a doctor."

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western hemisphere and is getting poorer every day. Half the population is under-nourished. One in five children dies before he or she reaches age 5. The majority of people out in the country don't have access to clean water.
Dr. J.L. Williams is an American, based in North Carolina. He has ministered the Gospel in Haiti for 30-plus years. Dr. Williams is now CEO of New Directions International Ministry.
He said, “So Haiti went from this incredible place of prestige, a place of beauty, to what it is today—just almost a barren lifeless island.”

An island where hopelessness and despair are captured in the faces of needy Haitians.
We interviewed some average Haitians. A 20-something young woman said, “Our life is so difficult here, we have lost hope in all earthly solutions to Haiti's problems.”
Many had pinned their hopes on Haiti's experiment with democracy—but that too has failed to produce much of anything.

I talked to Haiti’s Prime minister, Gerard Latortue. This man, in charge of running this country, is still optimistic about the future despite his country's catalogue of problems.
I asked, “Mr. Prime Minister, do you think that democracy is the answer to your nation?”
He answered, “Let me tell you something, whatever nation, whatever form of government, we know democracy is difficult to implement, but there is nothing better than it."

I spoke with open-air preacher, Chevannes Jeune, who is the pastor at Mission Evangelical Baptist Church.
He is one of the nation's top evangelical leaders, and he says there are deeper issues than politics that plague his nation.
I asked, “Do you feel Haiti is cursed?”
Pastor Jeune answered, “Yes, because our forefathers, when they were celebrating their first independence, they dedicated Haiti to a voodoo spirit.”
Haitians made a blood pact with the devil, 200 years ago, after a witchdoctor by the name of Boukman -- seen in the picture we showed -- dedicated the island to Satan.
Eris Labady pastors 15 congregations. I asked him, “What impact has voodoo had on your country?”
Pastor Eris said, looking in all directions at the obvious poverty of body and spirit here, "The result is all around us."
Then I saw a voodoo swimming ritual. According to Labady, voodoo permeates every level of Haitian society.

CBN News got a glimpse into this dark world where African witchcraft mixes with Catholic rituals.
A voodoo priest said, “Voodoo and the spirits on these walls have more power than the God of the Gospels and all this power is now in me and I can give that power to those who want it!”I asked him, “So, these are kinds of demonic spirits painted on the wall? The voodoo priest replied, “Yes! They are!” Emphatically he repeated, “Yes, They are!”

Another eye opening article can be found HERE from National Geographic.

Put on the WHOLE body of armor so that you can stand firm against the enemy.


Troy & Tara Livesay said...

These articles are always very interesting to me/us. Any perspective that is so black and white, so all or nothing, seems questionable.

Can a few people who choose a dark path make an entire country be doomed to suffer in the hands of the devil?

The best analogy we've come up with is this --- Say 30% of the US population is Muslim. (which is easliy possible very soon) They are a wealthy, influential part of the population. They get together and declare that the USA is now dedicated to Islam.

Do you believe that the USA is indeed doomed to belong to false religion because a few declare it to be so?

This is not confrontational --- it is just something we struggle with. We don't think a few thousand misguided people 200 years ago have the power to "curse" or condem a country forevermore.

Haitians almost all know the story of Jesus and the way to salvation. The gospel message is well-spread here. Mainly they need discipleshipt. They just don't take it to heart and they don't know how to seperate the cultural rituals of Voodoo from their Christianity.

Voodoo practices are not all spooky. The myth that babies are being sacrificed and other horrendous things is a white-man take on a cultural practice that we don't understand.

A Christian Haitian is bound to be supersticious and involved somehow in Voodoo --- which is a sin ---- but is it any worse than an American Christian involved in materialism, worshiping the almighty dollar, watching trashy television, and talking like a sailor???? (of which we're often guilty)

Voodoo is not good, but it is also not nearly as sinister as those of us who don't get it think it is.

(And we admit we don't get it --- it is okay to not understand some things ... if you were not born of African descent, you cannot understand that culture.)

Haitians cannot understand some of our cultural norms either.

Thank goodness Jesus sees and knows hearts.

The Hilton tribe said...

I agree that the article did in fact paint the entire nation of Haiti as a 'dark spirit' in dire straights. ..Even though it is in dire straights, and the executive leadership embraces Voodoo as his/their religion, the entire nations PEOPLES cannot and should not be stereotyped in this role.. That is like any other type of profiling. It's wrong and inaccurate simply because it discounts the vast MINORITY of Haitians that are not just bible believing. They are bible practicing. EXAMPLE: Thou shall have no other God before me. The difference between modern society and Haitians, is that Haitians label it, while modern society continues to mask it as something else. Which is more dangerous? And, which is more "scary"?

The very fact that the Haitian government advertises the fact that the national "religion" is Voodoo should make peoples alarm bells going off. And I do agree with the Livesays..

Discipleship anyone?