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Bertania's Story

Six months ago, a young woman waited at the doors outside of the Clinic of Hope in Haiti, broken and desperate. The youngest of nine, Bertania had worked tirelessly to put herself through school without the help of her parents—completing high school, her business degree, and was committed to finishing her master's program in the Dominican Republic. As a driven and educated Haitian woman, Bertania had doors of opportunity opening for a better life. Then she was attacked.

Drugged, beaten, and raped while in the Dominican Republic, Bertania came home to Haiti with nothing. All of her possessions were stolen and her self-worth was shattered. She found herself sitting across from Miss Anita, our head nurse at the clinic, drowning in tears of despair as she found out the news she was pregnant.

"I'm going to kill myself," was her first response. "There's no other option. My fiance will leave me, and there's no way I can support another person on my own. I know my life is over. What do I do now?"

In the midst of incomprehensible circumstances, Miss Anita was not willing to give up on Bertania, even though she was ready to give up on herself. Instead, in love and compassion, Miss Anita shared the truth that Jesus was there to be with her and care for her, and also her unborn child. The truth that this situation would be excruciatingly difficult, but God would bring hope, if she invited Him to walk alongside her in this.

Something changed in the heart of Bertania that day. The hard didn't magically all disappear, but because of the compassion of Miss Anita, and through the hope of a future in Christ, Bertania found the courage to face her situation. The bravery not to give up, even when her fiancé walked away. The grit to stay strong, even when she knew her life would never look the same. She made the choice not to end a life—not hers, nor this unexpected baby inside her—and God worked to bring beauty and redemption to even the most horrific parts of her shattered story.

On Monday, October 18th, a miracle took place—baby Benedict was born. Through generous sponsors, all of Bertania's medical fees were covered, allowing for a safe and healthy delivery in a hospital in Port Au Prince—something most new moms in Haiti don't have the means to afford. Mom and baby are both healthy and well, as they settle into their brand-new life together.

The hard is not over. Bertania and baby Benedict still have a tough road ahead of them, as this young single mother faces the many obstacles life in Haiti can bring. But God is not finished, either. He was with Bertania six months ago when she felt her life was over, and He's with her now, as she raises her son. Out of her greatest pain God is at work and her redemption story is only just beginning.

When asked how we can help her, this was her response:

"Help me to pray so that my son is under the wings of God, this is my first prayer. I also would like Ben to have a good spiritual education, economic and social. May he be a great man among the great, that he is a defender for the women and the children abandoned."

She asked for us to pray alongside her! She has seen and experienced that God is at work and He will provide, so more than anything she wants her son to stand and to be an advocate for women. One of our core values within women’s empowerment is to pray, so as you are gathering with family and friends sharing stories of what you are grateful for this Thanksgiving, will you pray for this precious momma and her son? May he be a warrior for Jesus and be that “greatest ministry” for Bertania!