East Three Notch FBC: ‘Hoofin’ for Haiti’

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 9, 2014

A group of people who are headed to Haiti this summer are asking their friends in Alabama to “hoof it” next weekend.

“Hoof It 4 Haiti” is a 5K run, walk and fun run designed to raise enough money to put a roof on a school.

“In Haiti, there is one of our interpreters we’ve known for four years,” Eric Searcy said. “He has a school and is in training to be a pastor. We are going to try to raise money to put a roof on his school.”

Searcy explained that the interpreter, Illes Toussaint, has the school for about 30 students at his mother’s home. It is basically four walls and some tarps, Searcy said. But with good support, the building will have a roof in June.

Searcy, the youth minister at First Baptist Church on East Three Notch, said his church works with First Baptist Church in Montgomery to support Children’s Hope Orphanage in Haiti, led by missionary Tommy Schwindling.

Those headed to Haiti hope to raise most of the $8,000 they need for their trip, slated for June 14-21.

“Our team is 18 people, 15 of whom are from Covington County,” Searcy said. “They are from First Baptist Church, Bethany, and Westside in Opp. We also have three from Oxford, Ala.

“Our mission is three-fold – children’s ministry, construction, and sports evangelism,” Searcy said. “We are going to teach the Haitian people how to play baseball and share Jesus with them.”

Most Haitians don’t know what baseball is, Searcy said.

“One of our guys form North Alabama, Jonmichael Lee, had a wiffle ball bat and wiffle ball last year. He was teaching a little boy how to use it and he ended up sharing Jesus with him, and the boy was saved.”

The idea caught hold, and the local group was asked to consider trying sports evangelism. Subsequently, among those on this summer’s trip will be AHS baseball coach Tyler Dent, Hillcrest head baseball coach John Dugger, and AMS baseball players Grant Holley and Garrett Davis.

There also will be two football coaches – Brian Seymour and Matt Johnson – but they’re assigned to construction, Searcy said.

The group is accepting contributions of baseball equipment for children or adults – balls, bats, and gloves, especially.

But next Saturday, they are looking for support from runners and walkers.

The event begins at 8 a.m. at First Baptist Church on East Three Notch at 8 a.m. Registration is $20 for runners and walkers, and $10 for the fun run.

Registration is available on active.com, by forms at the church office, or the day of the race.