Erntz in Wisconsin
Click here toCourtois Erntz moved in at my place when he was in 7 th grade or so. He took over for Celian who flew to
Brazil. Erntz finished 12 th grade and got himself into a university in Cayes studying agriculture. As a third
year student, every door opened for him to spend a year in the USA in an agricultural exchange
program. Today, he’s raising flowers in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
He flew into Green Bay in February. It was appropriately snowing as he left the airport to go to his new
home for 9 months. He embraced the cold mid-west winter and didn’t complain…or get sick. I had found
a Green Bay Packers winter coat at a local thrift store. I gave it to him thinking it might open some doors
as he flew into a new culture. It did. Within a week or two Erntz had met a man who works at the
stadium. He’s visited it already…has pictures with the big trophy! (They even parked in the player
One thing that has NOT worked out quickly is church. Erntz has worked in the hothouses on several
Sunday mornings. A month and a half have gone by now, and he has yet to attend a service. I’m praying
for him to be connected to a group of sincere brothers and sisters where he can find protection from
American culture–and the lure of the US dollar at the expense of everything else.
Erntz is quick. He is friendly. God opens doors for him at every turn. His English is very good and
improving rapidly. (He’s listening to Talk Radio.) According to Erntz, he has risen quickly in the work at
the flower shop. Administrators trust him with extra tasks and privileges. I’m not surprised. I can’t
foresee anything that will stop this kid’s upward trajectory.
Erntz will be free to visit Pennsylvania in October and/or November before he comes home to Haiti. I
hope that YOU will get a chance to meet him. We’ll be available for dinner every day! If you want
to get an up close and personal taste of what ASAPH Teaching Ministry has done in the lives of real
humans, make plans to visit with Erntz Courtois. You’ll be glad you did. edit.
The ASAPH Teaching Center is 16’ by 32’. It’s a great space. I teach music, English, Bible, and whatever
else people are willing to sit and learn (math, science…). I am thankful constantly for a great space in
which to teach…and that space is 9 feet from my house.
My brass students come around in the afternoons to practice. They sit around the outside of the
building and play. It’s distracting (and sometimes impossible) for those of us working inside. I’ve worked
on ideas to send them further away, but the one thing you NEED here in Haiti is shade. You can’t sit in
the sun and practice. Those students could use a space.
AAF’s soccer coach is Jude. He is leading a French club that meets on Sundays. They borrow my chairs
and table. I always refrain from having activities here at my place on Saturdays and Sundays…since I’m
overloaded with activities all week long. They could use a space.
Teddy is teaching brass instruments on Saturdays. He hauls instruments from here to his house and
teachers there because I need quiet times at my place. He could use a space.
The land across from my front gate is for sale. Hmmmmm. Let’s pray.
Christian Aid Ministries serves Christian primary schools all over Haiti. They give food assistance and
teacher salary assistance along with school books and other help. A few years ago they asked me to help
prepare a series of books for primary students. The people at CAM designed the program and chose the
content. They asked me to write all six books following their plan. We did grades 1 and 2 first. Then
grades 3 and 4. We’re now finishing up grades 5 and 6.
CAM has a budget that allows them to do things right. The books are high quality, and are beautifully
designed with images and attractive presentation.
Years ago I administrated the local Christian school sponsored by Water For Life. I dealt with French
books, math books, science books. We strove to provide the best available. I always regretted that our
kids did not have a great Bible book to go along with their other subjects. Now kids all over the island
are beginning to have a great series of Bible books. The books address : Who is God ? ; God and His Chosen People ; The Prophets and God’s Message ;
God’s Law ; Christ – Promises Fulfilled ; Faith And What It Means Today
I’ve always read that many people make their decisions for Christ somewhere around sixth grade. I’ve
seen that over and over in the lives of people here in Haiti as well. These Bible books lay a great
foundation that I believe will lead young people to trust the True God through Jesus Christ, His promised
These books are used every day across Haiti…and may be for years to come. I’ve been blessed to be able
to participate in the production of these materials. I look forward to the fruit that will be produced as
the most recent books begin to fall into the hands of young Haitians. God is good.
Years ago I visited the town of Simon almost weekly. I had friends who lived there while they continued
school. Simon is a small town on the outskirts of the city of Cayes. It’s claim to fame is a huge church
built by the Baptist mission in Haiti. It can hold…probably 1000 people. I don’t know. It’s wide and long.
They call it the Tabernacle.
Each year the Baptists host a convention in that Tabernacle. People come from all over Haiti, and from
many other countries. Only a small portion of the crowd can actually get a seat in the Tabernacle. Others
mill around and listen to the services on speakers or on the Christian Radio Station that broadcasts the
whole convention. Now they watch on TV…or live on-line.
I’ve never had ANY interest in being anywhere close to those conventions. I’ve listened on radio. BUT,
the crowds are overwhelming. As an almost solitary white face, I’ve always avoided the convention.
This year, the ASAPH Brass Band received a slot to play during a Youth service on the Friday of the
convention. Music groups work hard to get a chance to play in this huge assembly of churches.
Our date is April 12. We have five minutes. We are preparing a song that I love : LAVI MWEN PA YON
AKSIDAN…My Life Is Not An Accident. It’s a great message of hope. We play it pretty well, and we sing
the final section. We’ve rented a bus to take us there and back. The players are excited. I am as well.
It’s a great occasion for the ASAPH Brass Band to give thanks to the Lord, for He is good. His love
Missionary in Haiti.