President of First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Haiti Murdered
“Blessed in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.” Ps. 116:15
We have received news that the Rev. Dr. D. J. Louis, founder and president of the First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Haiti and its affiliated congregations, Lutheran Parochial Schools, Orphanages, medical clinics, High School and Seminary was murdered on Friday, March 12th. We have been given to understand that two assailants were waiting for him seeking money when he and his wife Elucie returned to home in the hills above Port-au-Prince where he had moved his family to avoid violence.
Pastor Louis went to close an outer gate and Elucie had gone upstairs. After killing him, the murderers went up stairs and demanded money. She responded that they had none but that Pastor would write a check. They callously told her: “Don’t worry about him, we shot him.” They then beat her before leaving.
Pastor Louis, a native Haitian, was a graduate of Concordia Seminary, Ft. Wayne, Indiana and was acknowledged to be the best Lutheran theologian in Haiti and was the first Lutheran pastor in Haiti. The work God allowed him to do has resulted in the establishment of The First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Haiti, a denomination which is fully recognized by the Haitian government and its schools and Seminary have receive full certification by the government.
The work of Pastor Louis has been supported by the Haiti Lutheran Mission Society, USA (HLMS) which is headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska. The HLMS is the first organization at work in Haiti whose Board Members are also members of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.
Fortunately Pastor Louis’ wife Elucie is safe, and his three sons are in the States. As additional information becomes available we will inform you.
Several years ago the family was also attacked in an attempted robbery. Pastor Louis suffered a severe cut on a leg caused by a machete and Elucie was shot in the back, with the bullet exiting through one of her breasts. The youngest son managed to escape and bring rescuers.
Mr. Dick Buethe, Executive Director of the Haiti Lutheran Mission Society, USA (HLMS) headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska will attend the funeral in Haiti. The funeral is scheduled for either Friday or Saturday, March 19th or 20th.
The HLMS has an all LCMS Board, members living in Nebraska, Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois and Missouri.
The HLMS is an independent 501.c charitable organization. It is unique in that all its work is done by volunteers. There is no paid staff, building and medical teams and American pastors who teach in the Seminary travel at their own expense. Even the cost of the quarterly newsletter The Call is funded by board members and an individual who has a special interest in this work. The result is that the HLMS can assure donors that one hundred cents out of each dollar they contribute gets to Haiti to help in the work of spreading the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Several Haitian pastors are serving congregations there and several others are ready for ordination. We are praying that the Rev. Thomas Brinkley, a member of the Board who established a Seminary in Togo will accept the challenge of going to Haiti for several months to assist the Church there during this difficult time. We are told that his help would be most welcome.
Pray for Pastor Louis’ family, for the mission there and for the people of Haiti.
For more information go to www.haitilutheran.org or facebook or contact Dick Buethe in Lincoln at 402-440-3449 or 402-474-7149 or myself, Rev. Charles Reimnitz, Past President of the Haiti Lutheran Mission Society at 402-618-0414 or at email@example.com. The Rev. Robert Nowak of Prior Lake, MN is our new president.
The Haiti Lutheran Mission Society, USA PO Box