Thursday, June 25, 2015

Final Update From Haiti

Well our days here in Haiti are in the single digits.  We wanted to give you one more update about a few things before we head to the states next week.

The new Christian School (Jean Alexis Kuslin Christian Academy) is coming along in construction.  Electrical is the next part to be completed, then paint, and then the fun begins with setting up classroom for the PK 1, PK 2, and Kindergarten classes.  The second week of July, our two new teachers from Canada will be making their transition here.  Please continue to pray for all of these things to happen smoothly.  Paul Perissien is currently registering new students to attend, and fitting them for their new uniforms which are being made by local seamstresses.  We can all feel the excitement building for the September 1st start date, God is good!

The block plant is nearing completion as well.  The living quarters and depot are finished, and work on the construction platform and is close to being complete.  Our hope is in a month or two we will be making cement blocks!!!

School distribution is our next big task ahead of Mission Haiti.  This is where over 2000 students in our school sponsorship program receive their supplies for the year.  Our biggest need is for gently used or new tennis shoes and backpacks.  If you can help in anyway, please contact Tim at

I haven’t updated much about the photo program and art classes I have been able to be a part of.  I hope to do that more in the weeks that follow after our return to the states.  This past week we were able to share some of the images from my student’s work in a photo show on our property.  It was a great way to wrap up our time here, and listen to each student speak about what they have learned through the program. 

Tim has taken on a new role with Mission Haiti as the American Director.  Our other team member here in Haiti, Paul Perissien, will be the Haiti Director.  This change happened due to the founder and CEO of Mission Haiti, Pam Plasier, resigning her position about a month ago after some time away from the ministry since this past January.  She felt God telling her to do this, and so we trust what this means for our families and all those who this effects will be blessed through a big transition time.  Please pray for these two men, they have been given many months working side-by-side in Haiti over the past year, and we hope this relationship continues as they will be leading from separate countries.

Upon our return to the states we will be taking our time adjusting to American life again.  This Fall I have been blessed to be able to again teach Art at Sioux Falls Christian, this time in grades k-5, along with some responsibilities in the international student program.  I am more and more excited to teach this grade level, as it has been 10 years since being in this role.  We are also thankful the girls think this is a positive thing, having mom just down the hall!

This leads me to sharing a bit of the feelings our family is experiencing as we look to return.  Our days are filled with busy anticipation, excitement, and also a generous dose of sadness.  Over these past 10 months, the people of Mission Haiti/Ti Riviere have accepted us, cared for us, watched over us, shared with us, and extended much grace.  Right now, it is hard to adequately put into words the mixture of emotions we are all feeling, it will take us all a while to really be able to process.  I told a friend this morning that it was a part of God’s plan that these last weeks have been incredibly busy here cause I find the sadness creeps up when I am still.  So I will save some of these thoughts for another day.  Today we ask you to again uphold us in prayer, along with the people of MH, the people of Ti Riviere, and those who we are anxious to see again in America.  

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Areas of Ministry - Education

I have wanted to highlight some specific areas of the ministry for some time now.  I would like to start with the area of education, as it is definitely the part of MH that influences the largest majority of people in both Haiti, and those in the United States. 
I will give you a quick overview of the role MH plays in education for the area of Haiti we work with.  But please know that much of this information has been given to me by way of Paul & Bethany Perissien.   They are our teammates here in Haiti, and work directly with 5 Haitian schools in areas of inspection, direction over the new Christian academy, and supervision of the sponsorship program.

Mission Haiti over-sees and partners with 5 Haitian schools that range in proximity to our property from a 20 minute walk, to a 3-hour hike.  What this includes is the ability for their students to be a part of the MH sponsorship program, as well as general accountability and leadership for those in each school’s administration.  Our sponsorship program involves having a part of your yearly tuition paid for by an American Sponsor, school supplies provided at the start of each year,  one meal a day, and de-worming medication twice a year.    Leading the sponsorship program in Haiti is Bethany Perissien.  Her role involves making sure our master list of students is as accurate as possible, American Sponsors are aligned with students in need, and coordinating the student sponsor pictures by taking over 2000 images to distribute in America.
On the US side of things, our Missions Coordinator, Amanda Van’t Hul, also does a lot of the work for this program by coordinating donations, communicating with those who sponsor the students, and getting valuable information into the hands of people who simply want to know how they can help.
These explanations of the sponsorship program seem pretty simple…. But they are anything but simple.  It takes a lot of thought and effort to make sure a high level of accuracy happens.  Bethany and Amanda also do all they can to keep our sponsorship program personal, and functioning with the American sponsor’s ability to impact specific individuals.

Another key component for MH being involved in these schools is the partnership our Director of Education, Paul Perissien, has with the individual schools and their teachers.  He makes sure things like class lists are accurate, building and supply needs are being heard, teachers are preparing well for class, and just a general structure is being carried out from day-to-day.  In the past 5 months, Paul has had the ability to pass on these duties to two Haitian gentlemen, Samuel and Jenae.  These men are doing a great job visiting 1 to 2 of the schools each day and then reporting back to Paul what is going on.  It has been really great to see this transition go as well as it has.  Since Paul has been involved, he says it has been hopeful and rewarding to see small improvements happening by way of teachers improving their lesson plans, showing up everyday, as well as the parent’s willingness to pay the small fee of tuition that is asked of them each school year.

A very exciting, and long time in coming part of MH’s involvement with education is the new Jean Alexis Kluslin Christian Academy, which is set to open September of 2015.  This has been a dream and vision of MH for a very long time.  We are very close to being able to start painting classrooms, making final decisions about curriculum, and even beginning to register students.  We also received a huge answer to prayers…. actually two… last month, when two sisters from Ontario, Canada decided to call Ti Riviere home next school year and be in our preschool classrooms as the first English/French speaking teachers.  Kristen and Cassie Kneufeld will be teaching alongside Haitian, French speaking teachers in a co-teaching environment where Christ will be at the center of every subject.  Paul Peressian’s role will be as Director of the Christian Academy, where he will continue his tireless efforts of making sure the quality of education being presented is very high, and most importantly, Christ-centered.  Paul has already put in countless hours in the past year when presented by our CEO, Pam Plasier, to be the Director of this new school.  One key aspect that is continually on Paul’s mind is how MH and JAKCA can better hold the students, teachers and parents accountable for their children’s education.   We believe with a partnership where Biblical truths are central, and a common desire for equipping the students how they can best serve others; this next school year is going to be incredibly exciting.

As I have previously said in this post, so many people have put in countless hours of work, and we know that there are many more ahead in the final months leading up to the first day of class.  Will you please pray for all whom this involves?  The construction crew finishing the building, the students and their parents of both the new Academy as well as the 5 other MH schools, Paul as Director, Cassie & Kristen as they transition to Haiti and teach, as well as the Mission Haiti staff & board as we do our best to support these efforts.
If you ever have any questions concerning our sponsorship program, please be in contact with anyone at MH.  We would love to help however we can.
Also, check out the Prayer Journal page.... long over due on an update to that.

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

March & April Mulder Update

Hello again to those who find the time to keep updated with our life here in Ti Riviere.  This post is going to include a number of topics, so it is my hope I can be as concise as I need to while communicating well what is on our hearts and minds….. but I have a feeling it could be a short book……

April and March were very busy months with short-term teams coming and going.  Teams are an aspect to Mission Haiti, that we as full-time MH team members really look forward to.  They bring a great sense of renewed energy, great attitude, willingness to step up to whatever is at hand, and are a source of encouragement to so many people.

We were especially anxious for the past couple teams to arrive because they were entirely made up of people who either attend Sioux Falls Christian School, or Shalom CRC in Sioux Falls, SD.  It was a wonderful two weeks, where we had a unique connection to almost every person here.  I said it often as they were on our property, ‘It feels like our worlds are colliding!’  Our home church, and the school I taught at and our children attended were coming to see a part of what life was like in Haiti, what a blessing!

Both teams did a variety of things, and were graciously flexible when plans had to change because of situations such as rain or road conditions.  The main goal for our short-term teams is to experience the culture and lives of the Haitian people, bring encouragement in as many ways as possible, and then return to the states being able to tell a more informed story from a part of the world which has so much to share.

So just as it was very exciting to see the SFC, and Shalom team arrive on our property, that meant that we were also going to have to say goodbye.  Our girls know by now what the feeling is like when the ‘goodbye’ day comes.  Regan, our youngest, has her own way of dealing with it… most goodbye mornings you will find her in our house alone, sitting by the table coloring.  I have even heard her talking to herself and trying to cheer herself up!  So yes, saying goodbye is not easy, but in some ways it is nice to again get back to our normal day-to-day activities, which get put to the side as we are spending time with teams.  This means the school books come back out, laundry gets caught up, financial reports are updated, time as a family again is a priority........ and we catch up on sleep : )

Moving Forward
We would also like to take this time to inform you that our family has decided to move back to America at the end of June.  At that time, Tim will be assuming a full-time position with Mission Haiti as their Chief Operations Officer, and I will be back at SFC teaching k-5 art!  We made this decision about a couple months into our return to Haiti this past January.  At that time there was some changes happening with MH staff positions in America, and so it was made clear that Tim would be able to use his gifts in an effective way from the US. 

This past year has been one where our family has been tested, stretched, educated and required to consider life in a whole new way.  And in the years to come, I am certain we will continue to learn from our time in Haiti, even as we will again call America our home.  It is also exciting to consider what this experience will bring to the role Tim will play within Mission Haiti in the states.  Having developed relationships, and living amongst those who work for and with Mission Haiti, he will bring a new dimension that we hope continues to develop and maintain lasting partnerships between all peoples.  His position will also require him to be making regular trips back to Haiti, maybe up to 6-8 times a year.  This too is exciting as our whole family has hopes of returning from time to time, to see the people we have been able to now call our family, and continue a connection in our girls’ lives.

This past week we were able to sit down with people in leadership of MH here, as well as most staff members and explain what our plans were.  This was not easy, and we ask you continue to pray for all those involved.   It is our hope that the people here understand to some degree why we have made this decision, accept it, and then continue to treat us with the love and respect they have so graciously given in the past.

Our girls heard the news after all others were informed.  They responded with a big mixture of emotions.  There were tears, both of sadness and joy, followed by a lot of questions about when we decided this, and about a lot of the details that Tim nor I have worked out yet concerning our living situation once we are back in America.  I have said it before, but the girls have been asked to process and handle a lot for their ages in the past year, and for the most part have handled it remarkably well. 

We also ask you to pray for the people who will be here in our place.  We are trusting that God will provide the right people/person, in His time, for Tim’s position here as property supervisor and financial guy.  It is a role, which as the ministry continues to grow, will need to be taken on by someone to allow for our other teammates to continue doing the quality of work they are doing.

That leads me to my final point… please pray with us for the team we are leaving here in Haiti.  Paul and Bethany Perissian have been an enormous source of encouragement, strength and sanity during our time in Haiti.  They have committed to another year, as they anticipate the opening of the Jean Alexis Kouslin Academy this fall, where Paul will be the director and Bethany will assume here current position as an integral player in our student sponsorship program and offer ophthalmology assistance to many.   It is hard on our hearts to know we are moving back to the US, and they will be continuing their work here without us.  We do anticipate the return of Pam Plasier at the end of May, but even with her return, more hands and hearts are needed to continue operating to the best of Mission Haiti’s abilities in Haiti.

So again, there are many details that need to be worked out in this time of yet another transition.  It seems God is making sure we don’t get too comfortable where we are at, as He is continually displaying His control and not our reliance on our own selves.
If you have any questions for us, please feel free to contact us at or

I think this is long enough for now…. But soon I hope to be filling you in on the role Mission Haiti plays in education for the more than 2000 students in the southern part of Haiti.  Look forward to some words given to me by Paul and Bethany as they, along with so many in Haiti and US, tackle the huge responsibility of establishing and encouraging a greater quality of education to this generation!

Friday, March 20, 2015

February & March Update

The past month and a half has been full of a variety of things.  I am going to try and give you a concise snap-shot of what we have been up to here at Mission Haiti.

The month of February was spent getting accustomed to working within the ministry without Pam here.  Much of these  new responsibilities fell on Paul, Bethany and Tim.  A lot of the adjustments went very well as even the viliage of Ti-Riviere and the schools we work with also had to adjust to dealing with “the new kids in town’ so to speak. 
Construction began on the new teacher housing the first week of February.  We are enjoying watching the great progress that has been made by a crew who works 6 days a week, from 7:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m.  They are a wonderful crew, who has been gracious in the fact we live amongst their construction site.
As a family, we tried our best to address schoolwork intensely because of the busy upcoming short-term team schedule approaching in the month following.  A fun trip was made to our favorite beach here, Port Salute, at the end of the month.  It is a great place to relax and enjoy the white sand and bright blue water. 

Short-term Teams-
Abiding Saviour Church
This team arrived the end of February and only spent two nights sleeping on our property.  They are a church team who have a long relationship with MH and have taken on the sponsorship of the Toussaint mountain school.  For 4 days and 3 nights the team camped at the school while during the day they spent putting on a VBS for the students of the school.  They were a great group of people ranging in age from 14 to their 40’s.  On their departure to the airport, they also stopped at a local hospital in Les Ceyes to offer prayer with patients.

Nurses & Family
The very next week we had a team of a variety of people.  Two people were here from SD who spent much of their times at our ministry center just a village over from Ti-Riviere.  One gentleman from the previous week stayed a second week to simply take in more of the Haitian culture.  Two nurses arrived who are regular visitors and put on free medical clinics at churches, schools and remote villages to those who usually cannot travel to our local clinic or afford to pay the small fee.  The final two members of this team were Tim’s mom and sister!  They bunked in our house that week and spent time just seeing how we go about our days and soaking up a lot of quality time with our girls.  It was very exciting for us to have family here, and we are so grateful to them for making the trip!!!

Embrace Church –
This past week we had Embrace church from Sioux Falls, SD come and stay.  They are also a church with a long relationship with MH in their sponsorship of another mountain school called Joubuin.  As a team they spent 3 days developing relationships with the kids at the school through VBS and a church service.  Along with this they hauled rocks to a home in the mountain where a family of 4 orphans will call their home.  During a hike down from the mountains one day, they team also spent time stopping at people’s homes along the path and offering prayer to those who lived in the homes.  On Sunday afternoon, we helped organize a basketball tournament for all those in the village with MH and Embrace representing themselves well with teams of their own.  And with the time left, many conversations and games happened with the kids of the MH orphanage and those youth who spend much of their days on our property.  As this team headed back to Port-au-Prince, they also made a stop at a local hospital to pray with patients and offer a small hygiene package. 

Sisters from Canada –
This week we have a couple young women coming here for a short stay on our property to check out MH as a potential place of employment during the upcoming school year as teachers in the new Christian Academy currently being built.  Please pray their hearts and minds are able to be open to the potential of living in Haiti, and being a part of a new way of doing education in this area.  It is very exciting to think of the potential ahead, and we hope God gives clarity and peace for all involved.

During this season of teams traveling in and out of the MH property, we as a team find it is both energizing and taxing. 
We love to have people making our home theirs for a week at a time.  It is a joy being able to show them many aspects of the ministry, bless the people who get put in front of them throughout the days, and at the very least consider a new perspective about a corner of the world that has so much to offer.  In some ways it is a bit like being a tour guide, all is asked of us is putting people in situations where their hearts are being affected by the stories of people here in Haiti.
Teams also bring with them a lot of their own stories to tell, which has been a great source of encouragement and learning opportunities for us as well.  As full-time staff, we have all commented that we are blessed and encouraged by short-term teams probably more than they realize.
Yet as teams come and go, our day-to-day tasks and duties don’t always stop, and so our to-do lists can compound pretty quickly.  Everything from our homes turning into dumping grounds, to important meetings with constructions crews, or making sure our youth are making it to school each day.  We are so thankful for the fact all of these duties don’t fall one just one person, but that we as full-time staff can pitch in where we see a need.
One area in particular that I have observed take a toll on our girls, is the let down of when an American team leaves.  The girls seem to latch on to people pretty quickly…. which has its positive and negative affects… then having to quickly say goodbye again.  I would say it has been confusing for our youngest two daughters to understand what role teams play for MH in general (maybe a topic for another post….)
But we have really blessed and encouraged by the teams that have been here recently, and eagerly anticipate the teams to come.  All have been unique, we trust their time was used for the good of kingdom building.  It is our hope that as each member returns to life in the states, they can continue sharing the stories of those they encountered while here for a while.