Mahanaim Church, meaning "The Camp of God", was established at the very foundations of Haiti ARISE Ministries, with the aim to bring relief of poverty by drawing people into right relationship with God and one another. Central to the heart of the ministry is the hope of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is offered and established by the local church.
As the groundbreaking for the school was happening in 2003, and Marc and Lisa Honorat shared their vision with the surrounding communities of Thozin and Chamette, many people were eager to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ and accept Him. In one week, 45 people became Christians and the church was born. Mahanaim Church was originally called The New Church of Thozin, for lack of a better name. It has been a central heartbeat for the community and grown steadily to more than 450 members. The local Haitian eldership team leads regular services and church activities including prayer, worship, baptism and communion. The church also is host for our annual New Years Outreach, MFI Pastors and Leaders Conference, Ladies Conferences, Youth and Children’s Programs.
A part of the vision of the local church is also to plant thriving and dynamic churches in other communities and partner with existing churches that are seeking fellowship through affiliation with Haiti ARISE. In 2005, our second church was planted in the small mountain village of Tapion near Grand-Goave that hosts a vibrant children's program with more than 150 children. In 2009, our first affiliate church joined from the mountain village of DuFou and has grown to a congregation of 200. A second affiliate church joined from Petit Paradis, a community just west of Grand-Goave.
We continue to build relationships with leaders and pastors in other areas of Haiti, seeking to help reinforce their local churches, provide resources and a place for fellowship. Haiti ARISE is working to establish Haiti Ministers Fellowship, where we have more than 40 pastors relating and growing together in ministry.
For the first 8 years, the church met under a tin-roof, open shelter on the main campus. It was expanded five times to accommodate the growth and could not expand out any further. A new open tin-roof shelter was constructed in 2011, doubling the space. The church members gave faithfully toward the building fund for the reconstruction, in faith that their seed, when planted, will produce a harvest 100 fold. They raised enough funds to cover half of the $20,000 cost to reconstruct the church. Since rebuilding the shelter with lumber trusses and plywood floors, the church members have taken even more ownership involving themselves in a greater capacity in ministry activities.
Plans have been developed for a new multi-purpose facility that will house the church as well as be used for the Bible College and primary school. The new construction will be on the second campus, situated closer to the main road and central to a larger community area.
Estimated Project Cost: $325,000 US