History of HCM
“Today I heard someone speak about the love of God. When the evangelicals come here, they curse witch doctors out and insult them and we run them out with rocks, but today I listened.”
It all started in a tent made of coconut leaves. In 1977, the HCM “campus” was nothing but a tent set up in a flea market, where witch doctors listened and patrolled. They threw rocks at street preachers who told them they were going to hell. But Pastor Etienne Prophete, in his coconut leaf tent, preached a different message. Through a sermon titled “A God of Love,” several Voodoo priests dropped their rocks and embraced the message that there was a God who loved them. Many gave their lives to Christ. From that day, HCM’s Kingdom work at Fonds-Parisien was born.
The vision for the mission was cast a few years earlier. In 1974, Etienne Prophete was finishing his Christian education at Ozark Christian College in Joplin, Missouri. He and his wife, Betty, presented their vision to a group of supporters. They desired to return to Haiti and establish a work that would address the physical, educational and spiritual needs of their fellow Haitians. They were just dreaming, but God was serious!
The young couple started their ministry in the front part of a two-and-a-half-room rented house in Port-au-Prince. They held prayer meetings, Bible studies, and clinics. Eventually, due to political disturbance, they sought to move their ministry to a larger, safer area in Fonds Parisien. But first, they had to win over the voodoo priests. The rest is history!
Forty-five years later, the ministry has grown to serve thousands of Haitians throughout Haiti. The work has expanded to include more than 20 church plants and 10 schools in the areas of Simonette, La Croix Perisse, Thoman, Chapotin, Bois Galette, Maingrette, Bertrand, Fonds-Verrettes, Fonds-Cheval, Drouillard, Mais-Gaté, Primitive, L’Artibonite, Peredo, Nan Plaisir, Pays-Pourri, Nan Boulay, Beudet, Rue Tiremasse, and La Tremblay.
At the Fonds-Parisien campus, there is a thriving church, school, and medical facilities. Daily, hundreds of Haitians come to the campus with physical and spiritual needs. Hundreds of Haitians are employed by the various campus outreach efforts. All of them hear about Jesus’s love. The mission serves in other areas including adult job training and community outreach projects.
In 2012, Etienne’s health began to impose limitations on his travel. His son, Edwens, began to oversee the daily operations of the mission. Edwens, along with his mother Betty and involved siblings, continue to manage the mission after Etienne’s passing in 2021. Haitian Christian Mission is governed by a board of directors, based in the United States. The true work of the mission is only possible thanks to a team of dedicated financial partners who volunteer their time and financially fund the work. The financial gifts and volunteer hours given to this mission have impacted the Kingdom in significant ways.
"With the Kingdom in mind, the
best is yet to come!"
-Etienne Prophete, Co-Founder
The Life of Etienne
Dr. Étienne Prophète, 81 of West Palm Beach, Florida passed away Friday, February 5, 2021, at home with family at his side. Étienne was born December 26, 1939 at Thomassique, Haiti to Vilnoir Prophète and Vertiline Thomas. Raised on a small cattle farm, Etienne was educated at local schools and later graduated from Ozark Christian College in Joplin, Missouri. He received their Distinguished Alumni award in 2006. Étienne also received a masters in linguistics from Université de Montréal in Québec as well as other translation certifications. As a champion for education, Étienne led by example by receiving his doctorate in ministry from Trinity Theological Seminary well into his 60s.
Étienne married Marie-Ange Oracle (Betty) on September 17, 1969. Etienne is survived by Betty and their seven children, Yves (Samathe), Adeline (Felix), Jean Alix (Ketly), Theodore, James (Vayolla), Edwens (Paloma) and Marcus (Christy), and numerous grandchildren.
Étienne and his family returned to Haiti where he founded Haitian Christian Mission in 1974 in Port-au-prince and later settled in Fonds-Parisien. Étienne's work with the mission is credited with contributing greatly to the area's local economy.
In later years, Étienne and Betty relocated to West Palm Beach, Florida where Étienne founded Haitian Christian Church of West Palm Beach. The congregation grew and served the community under his leadership.
Étienne was known as a courageous, visionary servant who never lost his zeal to serve the Lord and His church. His humility and kindness nurtured hundreds of people who consider him a great influence in their lives.