• Comment

Missions Spotlight: Augusta Christian School

Posted: September 13, 2017 - 12:44am
Bill Adams works with locals.
Bill Adams works with locals.

When he first started teaching at Augusta Christian Schools, Bill Adams wanted to take a group of students to Haiti, where he'd lived for several years, teaching in schools and working in some of the remote villages. Not everyone was on board with the idea immediately.

There were some misconceptions about the island, he said, but it wasn't long before he was able to convince them that the need was greater than any reasons not to go.

"Kids over there have a real rough life," he said. "They live hand to mouth. A lot of them have gardens, so they are able to eat, but it's a spiritually destitute place."

Spring break 2018 will mark the 11th trip Adams has made with Augusta Christian Schools' 10th- through 12th-graders, but his relationship with the nation goes back over 30 years. He lived there in the 1980s. He returned to the states for several years, where he met and married his wife, Lisa, and they moved to Haiti in 2003, teaching in Port-au-Prince. He began teaching at Augusta Christian Schools in 2006.

The couple work in Haiti with Life Ministries International and Donnie and Cindy Rogers.

Mission trips have had different focuses over the years. They've done some with a medical focus; others have just been about building relationships with the people living there. They've done Vacation Bible School for the small children and ministry for the teenagers.

Adams said being a teen in Haiti is especially rough, because many teenagers already have one or two children by the age of 16 or 17.

They take school supplies with them and other items such as yarn for the women to make items that are sold in the states. Adams said they keep a supply of yarn coming for them, and the women keep making more intricate and beautiful pieces. They've taken vitamins and other items.

The couple takes other trips to Haiti, usually going at least twice a year, but sometimes more. This summer, they held a marriage conference there.

Many times, the Augusta Christian students want to return on another trip. Some have taken as many as five or six trips with Adams.

"I've had kids say ‘this has changed my life,'" he said. "A lot of times we think we're going for them (the people of Haiti), but we're the ones leaving crying, with our hearts broken."

He said many of the teenagers he takes realize how blessed they are and come home with a big hug and kiss for their parents.

Adams said one of his students took that change to heart. She went to Haiti in high school and said she wanted to become a nurse so she could help the people of Haiti. After graduating high school and becoming a nurse, she did go back with them.

"It was emotional," he said.

In an email, Leah Murphy, the parent of an Augusta Christian Schools graduate, wrote that the mission trips made an impact on her family.

"This mission is near and dear to my family's heart, as my son went every year of high school and continues to go while in college. Part of my son's honors project is recruiting and coordinating an annual trip for his classmates at Stetson University in Florida to begin (hopefully summer 2018)."

 

  • Comment