In September 2019, the unimaginable happened in the Grand Bahamas. A Category 5 hurricane sat on the tiny island with over 200 mph winds for two days, destroying and killing everything in its path. Although deeply damaged, Emmanuel Baptist Disciple Center itself SURVIVED. The local pastor, Pastor Israel Pinder, lost five family members from the hurricane, yet still faithfully serves his people amid his own pain.
One of our Converge | MidAmerica | Southeast | Caribbean partners, Cecil Hollar, and a team from his church, Rejoice in the Lord Ministries, had the blessing of encouraging, supporting, and providing resources to the leadership at Emmanuel Baptist. Because of their partnership with Emmanuel Baptist, the team met with the youth and passed on a number of resources to church leadership. Much of Emmanuel Baptist’s congregation was uprooted after the hurricane when their houses were destroyed, so much of what Cecil and his team focused on was how to help the leadership reestablish their church after this devastating hurricane. Topics discussed included change that brings growth, spiritual gifts, and how commitment is the heart of the church and leadership. The team also met with 20+ church youth to eat, fellowship, and address the trauma they had been through due to the ramifications of the hurricane. They mostly wanted to talk about GOD with them, which was so encouraging to witness!
Now the church leadership is even more prepared and able to more effectively serve their community than ever before. Worshiping on the final day they were there with the leadership and youth they met throughout the trip was powerful and moving. Some of the best news from this trip is that Emmanuel Baptist was able to finally rededicate their church building after almost four years, praise God!
Plans are underway for future short-term mission trips to the Bahamas. Cecil and his team are working with Converge MidAmerica as they make plans for 2023 and hope to go every year as they continue to invest in their ongoing relationship with Emmanuel Baptist.
Our God is a God of Resurrection and Restoration. We look forward to witnessing how He uses Emmanuel Baptist Disciple Center for His Kingdom and Glory!
We invite all Converge churches to participate in partnership via Vision and Mission trips and financial partnerships. Your church can begin a similar relationship as Rejoice in the Lord Ministries has developed! Click here for more information on our Caribbean partnerships.