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A Salute to Our Captain
By Dale Breedlove
Our beloved captain has sailed away,
On the gentle breeze of an eternal day.
He set a course true with great adventure,
Bound for the protection of the Lord’s deep harbor.
He beckoned and trained the crew to carry on,
As he went forth to the great beyond.
We mind the rudder, rigging and sails,
As our ship encounters many swails.
Our captain learned patience, forbearance and persistence,
And called us alongside to lend assistance.
That our sound ship would sail Jesus toward,
And, reach out a hand to invite many aboard.
In 2000, my husband Scott, our 8-year-old son Caleb and our 11-year-old son Sam and I all went to Jolivert, Haiti for a mission trip. I had been on to other mission trips but my family hadn’t ever been on one – they never been out of the country.
My husband and I are nurses. When we got To Jolivert, the first thing we saw was a young man who was bleeding, profusely from a severed artery in his left arm. He had been cut with a machete! Dr. Bob and my husband rushed the man to the clinic.
Scott was wondering about exposure to all sorts of things as he assisted Dr. Bob as Dr. Bob saved not only the man’s life but his arm as well. Dr. Bob sutured carefully, so the man would have full use of his arm.I’m sure after being a medic in Korea this was not really remarkable for Dr. Bob. But it was remarkable for Scott.
The love Dr. Bob showed the skill Dr. Bob showed and the risk Dr. Bob took to himself on a daily basis was displayed on this very first day in Haiti.
Many things on that trip are very remarkable. Dr. Bob loved both of our boys and treated them as a grandfather would treat his grandsons. Both of our boys love him to this day. Scott and I now go on from 4 to 6 mission trips a year. During every trip we are reminded of the impact Dr. Bob had in our life and his name almost always comes up. He has left a wonderful legacy for us. We will always love Dr. Bob and Betty.
Friend and TECH Member
Twins Separated at Birth
I met Dr. Bob in 1998. My wife and I had served for six years with a different Haitian mission when we were declared unacceptable for reasons that were not stated. It turns out Dr. Bob and Miz Betty had suffered the same fate (as had Dr. Jerry and Betty McKinney). It seems that particular mission leader tolerated no individualism and is reputed to have re-situated more missionaries in Haiti than any other person or force.
In any case, Dr. Bob and Betty had begun a work in La Hatte, just down the road from the present site of Missions of Love. He graciously offered us a place to serve and that began the almost 20-year involvement with MOL and a deep and abiding friendship with a remarkable man.
The first factor I discovered was that where I was a rough and tumble New Yorker who attacked problems head-on, Dr. Bob was a kind and humble man who served rather than directed although history shows how much he did do. It has always been my belief that God had a plan which called for our divergent personalities to supply what was needed. I have always demurred from any elected role in the mission (although I have been a director from the start). Dr. Bob could cast oil on the waters that I might stir up. He was a classic family doctor of the days when one man did it all in a small town, a peaceful person, deeply devoted to God and dedicated to the betterment of mankind. I was a high powered surgical sub-specialist (ENT). We had both served our country in peace and war; he as an Air Force Corpsman and I as an infantry officer, flight surgeon, and otolaryngologist. We had both seen more than we needed to see.
The second factor I discovered was that Dr. Bob and I had so much in common as well as in contrast. He was the product of rural Kentucky. I was a big city street smart. We both struggled with our childhoods, albeit for different reasons. He had a lifelong battle with the bottle, which he won, and I came very close to being an alcoholic save for critical people the Lord sent to save me from myself and my long family history of alcohol abuse. Our medical fields were different but we both wanted to help people and share Christ. Jean (my wife) and I used to stay with Dr. Bob and Betty at the farmhouse when there was a board meeting. Betty was much younger than we were, but Dr. Bob and I were only a year apart (he was the senior). We quickly found that they were identical to us as “old married” folks. They argued the same way and loved each other very much. Dr. Bob and I even had the same taste in flannel shirts and at breakfast one morning he appeared (Dr. Bob liked to cook breakfast) in an identical shirt to one I had in my bag. Naturally, a discussion ensued as to who owned what shirt. It was quickly resolved in mirth but that was typical of our friendship.
I could go on for some time but suffice it to say, Dr. Bob will be missed and never replaced. He was someone who you wanted to be like and he did so much good in his life –at home and abroad.
Time and age, the disintegration of the body and now death are taking away those who pioneered this work. However, the work continues and we have faith that God will send new workers into the field to lift the torch such giants as Dr. Bob has passed to them.
Dear Friend: May God welcome you when He returns and comforts you in sleep until that time arrives.
Dr. Asa and Jean Talbot
Like the Apostle Luke, Dr. Robert Johnson was a good physician. Known to be a good diagnostician, and great cardiologist (though he did not specialize in cardiology), his articles were published in nationally known medical journals and periodicals. Medicine was not just a profession; it was to him a calling. He could have enjoyed more lucrative practices in larger cities, but he chose to remain in rural Ohio County. He saw himself as a country doctor and aspired to be nothing more and our community was blessed because he did.
Like the Apostle Paul, Dr. Bob was a great missionary. I was privileged to accompany him on two trips to Haiti. He loved the Haitian people and quickly learned to speak their language and the Haitian people loved him. Approaching their communities, men, women, and children would run from their huts to greet him with smiles on their faces. The only part of their joyful greeting I could understand was: “Dr. Bob! Dr. Bob! Dr. Bob!” Though he had no formal theological training, Dr. Johnson was the best missionary I have ever known.
Like Barnabas (Acts 11:24), Dr. Bob was a good man. He was authentic. There was not a pretentious or hypocritical bone in his body. What you saw was what you got. In his autobiography, The Calling, no effort was made to hide the warts or cover the flaws. He told it like it was. Yet, shining through those warts and flaws, like stars on a dark night, one could see a strong faith and a soft heart. Dr. Robert T. Johnson is a wonderful example of the change the love and grace of God can make in a person’s life, and the good that God can accomplish with imperfect people whose lives are committed to him.
Like the Great Physician, Dr. Bob was my friend. We came to Ohio County about the same time. I knew him over fifty years. I am grateful to God that our paths crossed and his life impacted my own in many ways. My life has been enriched for having known him. Thank you, Lord for this humble and good physician.
Pastor Glenn Armstrong
Dr. Bob and Sis. Betty are fellow soldiers and eternal friends! God Bless Them!
Joe and Hiawana Greene
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On Valentine’s Day, MOL employees were treated to a love-themed appreciation night, which included a beautifully presented and delicious Haitian meal, light-hearted fellowship, a short devotion and encouragement to continue serving alongside Missions Of Love in the future as we continue to grow and serve our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in and around the Jolivert area.
Food for the Hungry
“Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness.”
~ Isaiah 58:10
Because of the faithful giving to the Jolivert Feeding Program, commodities of rice, flour, cornmeal, macaroni, spaghetti, cooking oil and black beans were purchased, packaged and ready to be distributed to over 120 needy families.
Several boxes of garden seeds donated by NY Seed Programs International out of Asheville NC had been shipped to Dr. Bob and Betty Johnson recently, so Betty sent in several packages of garden seeds via February team member Warren Mattingly, enabling Blaud to package up and distribute several hundred packages containing okra, cabbage, tomato, beet, onion and eggplant seeds on Friday, Feb. 17th to nearby gardening families. Let’s join together in prayer that these crops will be blessed and grow abundantly!
Dolls on Mission is a ministry of Angela Seng’s family’s company Seng Inc. They specialize in restoring Barbie dolls to like-new condition, then send them out with missionaries and mission teams around the world. February Mission team member, Becky Baise, packed in nearly 60 Seng ministry dolls to share with the young girls of the Jolivert area, brining smiles to young dental patients, students and friends of the Mission.
Anglea Seng sings and speaks about the doll ministry to raise money and awareness for this ministry as well as the Seng Family’s other ministries. “The response to this ministry has been overwhelming from those who have donated and to the children receiving the dolls,” Seng says. “Within the past 2 years we have restored over 1000 Barbie dolls.”
For more stories, videos, and info, visit their Web site at angelasengmusic.org.
Cave City KY
Church: Coral Hill Baptist Church, Glasgow KY
Job: Compton Orthodontics, Bowling Green KY for 10 years as a Clinical Coordinator. Been in the dental/orthodontic field for 30 years.
”It is amazing to look back and see how the Lord had this whole trip planned… His loving hand on every detail months before it took place… how we saw Him touch so many people along the way, from the planning and still even with the memories and friendships He allows us to have with the Haitian people who touched our hearts. The worst part about this trip was the fact that we had to leave. I pray that the Lord will use our team and myself in Haiti again soon.”
Job: Amneal Pharmaceuticals
Church: Coral Hill Baptist Church, Glasgow, KY
“Very humbling to be around the (Haitian) people working with them and learning their language. It was a blessing to be able to play soccer and share the gospel, and witness a young man being saved. It just showed me that He can use anyone regardless of where you are or who you’re sharing the gospel with… that is indescribable and a blessing.”
Job: Hibbett Sports, babysitter and student
Church: Coral Hill Baptist Church
“Haiti is truly a beautiful country with beautiful people and beautiful hearts. I’ve left a big piece of my heart there and I am beyond blessed that The Lord provided me with the opportunity to share Christ’s love and experience his work happening right before my eyes. I pray I get to go back some day. Praise God!”
Job: Electrical Sign Contractor
Church: Christ Church of Hope
“It was such a blessing and honor to serve Christ in Haiti… to witness the love and kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ through the hard work of the Haitian dentis, the MOL staff, cooks, interpreters and our team. They were all such an inspiration. I still long for that sweet fellowship.
In the early summer of 1992 Pastor Emmanuel Milhome from La Hatte, Haiti came to the U. S. to meet with people who had held outreach clinics around La Hatte. They wanted to begin a new mission work to minister first in his area and then to wherever The Lord led. My friends from New Life Church, Larry and Janet Lovell, were a part of the founders of Missions of Love, Inc. Pastor Emmanuel was staying with them, but because they were attending a college graduation for their daughter, they asked that I take Emmanuel to breakfast and entertain him until his appointment with our pastor.
During our time together Pastor Emmanuel asked when I was coming to Haiti. When I told him I really didn’t know, he said to pray strong about it. The way he said it caused me to be in a constant prayerful attitude about the question. Through The Spirit I heard, “Get a passport.” I got my first passport and learned that the first trip for Missions of Love was forming for January, 1993. That was the beginning of a trip that led to sometimes two trips a year since. After a few years, I was elected to the Board of Directors (since he keeps coming to the meetings, he will at least help make a quorum.)
I have been blessed to pray, preach, work and worship with our Haitian brethren over the years. I was privileged to accompany Dr. Bob Johnson when the land at Jolivert was purchased, to work on the foundation of our first building, to help get the army truck and trailer with roof trusses out of customs, and witness the first examination in the new dental
To be invited to preach at various and sometimes remote churches has been an honor. To be present at some of the teaching conferences has been inspirational. And, to witness
some confess faith in Jesus Christ and be baptized is so fulfilling. To be elected president of such a dedicated group of servants of The Lord is humbling and challenging.
In His Power we press on in our calling.
MEDICAL CLINIC This year, Clinic Jolivert continued its role as a major health center directed by a Haitian physician and fully-staffed with Haitian health personnel. The Clinic was able to provide quality healthcare and education, government-provided immunizations for children, free chloroquine and mosquito nets (provided by MALARIA FINI) to all malaria sufferers, as well as provide HIV testing, education and consultation. Because of our in-house lab, we were able to provide pregnancy tests, complete blood counts, blood sugars and urinalysis. Likewise, Clinic Jolivert was able to dispense prescriptions from our government-approved pharmacy.
GO PROGRAM This year the GO program, an orphanage alternative ministry, supported eight grandmothers who are raising and caring for their orphaned grandchildren, great-grandchildren and other youth in their family, as well as one pastor in the program who cares for orphans in his home, and one family with toddler triplets as well as three other children.
SAFE WATER for FAMILIES Gadyen Dlo, our Safe Water for Families program, is installed in over 25,000 homes in our immediate area and now in countless thousands of homes throughout Haiti since the Haitian Ministry of Health has adopted our methods and are encouraging them throughout the country and thus contributing to healthier lifestyles.
ADULT LITERACY 258 Creole Bible were awarded to students who completed the Adult Literacy Course 2015-2016 under the direction of Jackson in the Jolivert area. On Sept. 29, 2016, Jackson trained 12 new teachers for the 2016-2017 session. In Gonaives there are currently 17 Adult Literacy Classes, varying in size from 4 -12 students, under the supervision of Pastor Juanito Genada. 110 Creole Bibles have been awarded to graduates of the Adult Literacy Course in this area for 2015·2016.
This year, Nancy Bukovnik, founder of the MOL Adult Literacy Program was privileged to present a Creole Bible to an 85-year-old graduating student in Gonaives!
EYE and EAR CLINIC ln 2016 the Eye Clinic saw 2,345 patients of whom 356 were found to have cataracts, 1,098 glaucoma, 1,748 had either infection or allergy/irritation/dryness and 127 were referred for more definitive care. In October alone, thanks to Dr. Mick Vanden Bosch, 994 patients were seen and seven received cataract surgery at MOL and one had a pterygium removed from her eye.
MANBA for MALNUTRITION The Manba program is a six to eight-week nutritional program dedicated to children one to five-years old who suffer from moderate to severe malnutrition. Nutritional education, medical care plus a Gayden Dlo bucket and clean water education are included. This ministry employs one worker and purchases peanuts from local farmers to produce a fortified peanut butter paste. This year 14 children graduated the program and 10 more are currently enrolled. The estimated cost to treat a child for malnutrition is approximately $99.
MEDICAL SUPPLIES for CHRIST In 2016, through the wonderful partnerships of TECH, Midmark Corp., Supplies Over Seas (S.O.S.) and individuals like Dr. Mary Gebhardt, Dr. Ann Ayre, Dr. Joe Geico and Kentucky Mountain Mission, costly and crucially needed laboratory, medical and dental equipment and supplies have been provided.
DENTAL CLINIC “The new kid on the block” in Jolivert is growing strong! With the blessed partnership of respected Haitian MSPP Dentist, Dr. Scott Rousseau, who worked alongside our American Dentist Dr. Mary Gebhardt and the rest or the dental team this Spring and headed up our very first all-Haitian dental team this Fall, we were able to provide dental care to 302 patients! Will you please help us pray that 2017 will open the door to full-time dental care at our clinic?
EMERGENCY/DISASTER RELIEF In October, $5,000 came from the U.S. to assist victims of Hurricane Matthew. This benevolence provided: $3,000 for 7,680 families to receive Gadyen Dlo safe water treatment: S 1,500 for 276 patients to receive medical care at the Jolivert Clinic, including consultations, lab tests and medicines: $500 for Bush Clinics where 560 patients were given medical attention in various affected villages.
PLANTING NEW CHURCHES Beyond practicing faith within the confines or the practical, medical. and humanitarian efforts, initiating Pastors’ and Women’s Conferences, MOL walked alongside our Haitian brothers and sisters this year via support of local church programs and the evangelical group Solidat who has helped to lead many to Christ Jesus as well as recently opened a church and a school in Belair and a church in Drijon.
OUTREACH CLINICS MOL outreach teams visited remote rural villages continuing education of community health care workers, diagnosing and treating common life-threatening illnesses (i.e. dehydration, malnutrition, malaria and parasites) as well as provided safe water for families – touching the lives of hundreds this year.