Our family is heading to Haiti in one week on February 5th till March 15! Please pray for us!
I wish that I would have sent this update sooner, as you can see we added a new addition to our family last year! Moses Alexander was born July 14 of last year and has to be the sweetest, most content baby I have ever met! We are so thankful! Zacharie’s mother, Madamn Vide (“Mama” to most of you!), was here visiting this past summer and got to be here for the birth and Moses’ first two months of life. It was special to share that time with her here in the states!
Zacharie was in Haiti this past September for 2 weeks leading a team with Cindy and preparing the children in our sponsorship program for school. I, Stevie, stayed home with the kids and have not been to Haiti in almost a full year! Needless to say, I am so excited to head down so everyone can meet Moses and to love on Katheline! She just turned 9 years old on January 23rd and is one smart cookie, being the top of her class! We are so proud and quickly began to love her like she’s our own.
Many people ask us why we are still spending so much time in the states…
So I wanted to share why – Zacharie is here on a US residency which requires him to be in the country for at least 6 months of the year. After 3 years of having your residency you can apply for US citizenship – which was this past October for Zacharie! We began the process in December and have already been through the fingerprinting process. We are hopeful to have another letter waiting for us when we get home (or to receive it soon after) with a naturalization test/interview date! We were told the process takes 6-12 months so we’re praying we won’t have any complications and that we’ll be done with immigration soon!
Another common question we get is: Why does Zacharie want American citizenship? Well, I can say that he does not WANT it as he is very proud to be Haitian but unfortunately it is a necessity for our family. With 3 out of 4 of us already being US citizens it makes the most sense for this to happen. Not only will it make it easier with traveling to/from Haiti it will also give our children more opportunities in the future. This means that Zacharie will lose his Haitian citizenship as Haiti does not do dual citizenship. But he’s learned to accept this and knows he will always be in Haitian in his roots! (I’ve had to remind him of this a couple times!)
What will we be doing in Haiti this time you may ask…
Though it has been a long road of planning, building, and fundraising since 2013 we are thankful to have had the opportunity to work here in the states and save money for our family and our HOUSE! Woot woot! Thank goodness we are finally beginning construction of our house! Can you tell that I’m excited? When we are down we have all of us and our things in one room so with our growing family it’s getting to be pretty tight quarters! It’s been exciting to draw up blueprints and make plans as it’s a big step for our family!
We do not have teams coming down during our stay with the exception of Cindy traveling down with My Momma for the last 10 days of our trip. I am beyond thrilled to be able to share this part of my life with her and I know she can’t wait to meet Katheline and the rest of Zacharie’s family!
We will keep busy with construction of our home (Zacharie hopes to finish our foundation while we are there), but we hope to also find opportunities for new ministry in our area. My heart goes out to the parent’s who ask us to take their children. We hope that in the future we can find ways to empower them whether through finances, employment, or encouragement . We are praying that God opens our eyes to the needs in our community and for ways we can improve them and share his love at the same time.
What you can pray for:
- Safe travels
- Smooth transitions for the kids
- Zacharie’s citizenship process
- Opportunities for new ministry
- The search for more children to bring into the home
- For us not to lose sight of God’s plans in our own lives and for the community!
Thank You for your love and support these last couple years. Words can not express our full gratitude!
Many Blessings to you and your family,
Zacharie, Stevie, Abraham, & Moses Estime