To Haiti We Go – Merry Christmas/Jwaye Nwèl

So many things run through our mind as we think about what we want to share in this “END OF YEAR” newsletter. As you all know, this has been the most UNEXPECTED year and year of unknowns most of us have ever faced in our lifetimes. There is truly SO much we could say but we decided to keep this one as SHORT as we could but with a LOT of pictures!

Our Hope for Kidz program!
Devotions every morning together to start the day out. This day included a little laughter too!
Jim eating breakfast with one of the teams this past fall.
An outdoor service that the teams do in the village they are in when they come.

One of the things I love about RMI is that we local source as much as we can. When funds are donated towards a construction project, we hire out local help instead of using all of our guys or having a team come down to build it all.

It has been THREE MONTHS now since we’ve been back home in Haiti. It has felt GREAT being back and getting back into the swing of things.

Year two has been such a better adjustment for us and we feel so much more at home this year. We feel more comfortable doing things, have developed more relationships, and have more of a better idea of the ministry things we are doing currently etc.

We still miss our family & friends dearly but we praise God for how He has helped this new land be our home too. So many people here are dear to our hearts now and we truly love living here in Haiti.

Our friend Perguens and Jim as we waited for our permis photos.
This is a VERY common site to see both genders, but especially ladies carry all sorts of goods around on their heads many times with no support from their hands. Very impressive.
One of the churches we partner with that takes a little bit of a walk to get to.
A time of prayer and encouragement with families near the local church and community where the team is staying.
Windy, Patrick and Marcel helping with our solar projects. A big GOAL of RMI this year is to go FULL solar at our facilities to help with costs.

Since we’ve been back, Jim’s been really busy with either taking teams out (we’ve still had three teams this fall as the pandemic hasn’t hit Haiti like it did the states), language learning, learning his new position as the area “internet guy” or other various things with RMI.

April has been busy homeschooling the older two boys, learning the language and getting tested by RMI’s depot supervisor to be able to drive the automatic car here in Haiti. They don’t have driving school or tests officially here in Haiti but RMI likes to do their own testing to make sure all drivers are ready to drive here in Haiti as it’s a NIGHT and DAY difference from driving in the USA. April passed the automatic test and will be working on passing the manual test soon as well. She goes out from time to time to take pictures of various projects that our organization is doing and of our school and church partnerships. She also is the one who posts on RMI’s social media from the Haiti side of things for RMI.

The boys have been doing GREAT with school and have loved being homeschooled. So far they’ve studied about Asia, Space, & Europe this fall. Zeke has fun doing some “fun” school with them, then going off and playing or reading with April. The beauty of living in Haiti is the boys have SO MUCH outdoor time to play in the beautiful sunshine. They have adjusted so far this second year SO well. They are thriving here and we praise God for that! Both older boys can drive the ATV quite well now, which they are super excited about.

Our home!
Wednesday market day!

Even though the pandemic hitting the world has definitely changed how things look for what we do here in Haiti, it hasn’t changed our mission or purpose. We have still been very busy with the solar & construction projects, Hope for Kidz sponsorship program, which is a huge undertaking and all the other things we do with our food, goat, and water filtration programs. The behind the scenes work that goes on in our organization is truly amazing. We have such hard working, dedicated people that love God and love people. This time has been especially hard on our churches we partner with, so we’ve been doing our best to help see what their needs are and helping where we can.

Daddy picked up some sugarcane for the boys.
One of the views of where we live.
Jim and Frantz giving devotions.
The sunsets here are breathtaking.

Si Dye vle, if God wills, we are preparing for a great 2021. Our churches in the states are very eager to come back to see their partner church here in Haiti. The relationships they have built over the years run deep and so both sides miss each other so much when things like a pandemic stop teams from being able to come. We are praying that Lord willing, our full calendar of teams this winter/spring will be able to happen.

Along with Jim going out with teams the week they are here, April will be occasionally going out as well and sometimes going just for the day to the teams that are within a 1-2 hour drive, so she can take photos and capture their trip and time with their sister church.

This gal would giggle every time I went to take her picture.
Family time!
Zeke’s good friend Anderson.
Kiah riding our ATV to the ministry office.

This has been a very hard year for the world. We have been grateful for all of you more than you will ever know. We have been praying for all of you. If you are reading this, we thank God for you. It means so much to us that you take time to read our updates, pray for us and support us in any way you can. That is very encouraging to our hearts. Being on the mission field can be lonely at times and feel kind of like “in between places” or worlds but it’s also a VERY good reminder of how this world truly isn’t our home.

For those of you on our financial support team, we know this year has been hard financially on many and that more than ever possibly, helping our family stay and serve in Haiti, is even more of a sacrifice on your part. For that we are eternally grateful. You will truly never know how much of an eternal impact you are making by what you give. We praise God for you, we pray for you and we thank Him for all of you who have brought our family to Haiti.

View as we drove in the mountains.
One of the schools we partner with!

From our family to yours, MERRY CHRISTMAS / Jwaye Nwèl! We love you all!

A Transformed Life


It will be one year, 6 days from now, since we first moved our family to Haiti. What unknowns we had, what a peculiar first year we had, what depths of sorrow we had at times with missing those we love most and the life we knew for the past 35 years behind us and yet what great depths of JOY we had as well as He did so many things in our lives and hearts that we will forever thank Him for.

“Jesus is our STRENGTH and what we cannot do or bear, He can both do and bear in us.” – J. Hudson Taylor

Our furlough time and time that we’ve have had for April to heal is coming to a close and we will be heading back home to Haiti soon. We miss our home, our RMI family, our friends, and are excited to see even in the chaos of 2020, what God will do this year and we look forward to being a part, no matter how small, of whatever He invites us along to do this year. So as we prepare to head back, we have three churches we will be speaking at and meeting with another mission group from another church before we leave.

Just like last year before we left, we are taking this time to prepare our hearts, and spend some time with those we love most. We know saying goodbye will be just as hard if not harder again, but we know without a shadow of a doubt this is what He has for us and so we walk forward, rejoicing, with anticipation knowing that these goodbyes are not forever but what we give up now, will Lord willing, produce something far greater for eternity!

“All our difficulties are only platforms for the manifestations of His grace, power and love.” – J. Hudson Taylor

We would love to pray for you as you pray for us. Please leave us a comment, message, email or call us and share how we can be praying for you. What a privilege we all have, to have that access everyday, to go before His throne and pray for each other.

We would love prayer for the following:

  1. Finishing up well here with speaking, goodbyes & packing.
  2. Safe & smooth travels back home to Haiti.
  3. April’s continue healing with her gastrointestinal health.
  4. Transition into year two in Haiti, as Jim and April start ministry work, Jim works on a new position he has and April as she schools the boys from home. 
  5. For us to be aware in the moments God is wanting us to say or do something. For wisdom, discernment, grace & love as we grow relationships more this year and show His love however He asks us to each day. 

We want to leave you with this, a life transformed. I am sure many of you have heard of J. Hudson Taylor, a missionary to China for 51 years. What many know is of the life he dedicated to the Lord, the hundreds of missionaries that followed after him to China and the thousands since then who have come to know Christ. However, what you may not be as familiar with is the story of his praying mother. J. Hudson Taylor was actually living a life in the world, away from the Lord and fully for his own self. He left all he had grown up to know and learn from his childhood for the passions and possessions the world had to offer.

His mother, Amelia, knew the best thing she could do for her son was to commit to praying for him. One time she went away from their family home and was determined to pray for her son until she came to a sense of assurance that God would save him. She locked herself in her room and pleaded that God would extend mercy to Hudson.

Amelia, J. Hudson Taylor’s mother.

Coming home from her time away, her son greeted her and said “Mother, I have some news to tell you.” and before he could say anything she shared with him how she already knew because during that time away she was praying for him and God reassured her that Hudson had come to know Him. Amazing how the same time God was working in his heart, he came to know Christ and was praising him for his salvation, his mother was away, praying on her knees for that very same thing.

He shared their last time together and how she sat beside him on his bed and they sang one last song together and then prayed together. They then had to say goodbye, never expecting to meet on earth again. As he stood on the dock, and the ship left the gates, he said he could hear the anguish of her cry that came out and how it felt like a knife going through him. He said he never knew so fully, until then, what “God so loved the world” meant.

Friends, we share this to encourage you and remind you of the intense power of prayer. No matter what you find yourself facing this year, lets all remember to go to God FIRST about it before anyone or anything else.

“When we work, we work. When we pray, God works.”  “Learn to move man, through God, by prayer alone.” – J. Hudson Taylor

Praying this also encourages those of you who are in the parenting season right now, especially in this crazy year of 2020, that no matter how you feel as a parent, no matter how weak you feel this year, how you feel you have failed, or that you don’t have the strength to handle this year….pray! Prayer isn’t a last resort, something we do on the side or a plan B.

Friends, prayer is the most powerful thing we can do for our family. Fervent prayer on behalf of our family…WOW…can you imagine what things will come from that!


The Starkey Family


To Haiti We Go – Summer Update!

“You can endure change by pondering His permanence.” – Max Lucado

It’s a rainy June day here in Ohio as we type this update to you all. The past few months have brought about a LOT of change not just for our family, not just for you but for our entire world! We are so beyond grateful that during all of this change, this chaos, this unknown…oh friends, we have such a constant, faithful, ever-present, and all-knowing God we can rest in.

Before we go further and share some updates with you, we want to pause for a moment and THANK YOU. Thank you for praying us through our first “year” in Haiti. Thank you for praying for April as you found out about her health issues. Thank you for praying for our family as we made the hard decision to come back on furlough early so April could get help. Thank you for all who have prayed, who have given items and financial gifts to our family this summer to help us while we are here in Ohio until we head back to Haiti. Thank you to EACH OF YOU who have taken the time to just ask how we are doing, how you can pray for us, stopping and praying over us in the moment and just “being” present in our lives and listening. What a blessing you all are to our family.



After plenty of doctor appointments and tests, they were able to rule out some things that we were thankful for. April does have gastritis but we also found out her underlying autoimmune gastrointestinal issues were worse than she thought. As her acute gastritis situation is healing more and more each day, she is focusing more now with doctors on healing all of her gastrointestinal issues as well. Pain and symptom wise, she feels 85% better from when they first came back to the states. Daily she still has symptoms and she still can’t do too many things before getting weak and in pain but she is praising God for the drastic healing she has seen in the past few months and she is excited to see where she will be health wise in the coming months. Some huge dietary changes had to be done as well that she will have to continue with. Thank you so much for your prayers.


Our original plans were mid July to mid September for furlough because of our niece getting married in September. Since we had to come back a few months early due to April’s health, the first month we stayed in to help April rest and heal. As Ohio has started to open back up some more, Jim has started having coffee chats with people to connect, catch up and share how our first season in Haiti went. April has been able to do a few catch ups as well within the past few weeks as she continues to heal each day.

As churches open back up, we will be speaking at a few of them before we head back to Haiti and will continue to connect with our friends, family & supporters on an individual basis as we can as well until we head back. As of right now, Haiti is still closed and we are not for sure when they will be opened back up for people to fly back in. We are assuming and hoping that by time we head back after our nieces wedding, all will be well and we will be able to fly back home to Haiti.  Please pray with us for the protection of RMI staff and all of their family as well, from the virus. Thank you! We miss our home in Haiti and we miss our Haiti family.

We have played a lot of board games and Jim & Micaiah especially have used the first month of down time we had, to put a lot of puzzles together. We also have tried to see both sets of grandparents & aunts/uncles as much as we can so they and our boys can have as many precious moments together as possible before we head back to Haiti. Isaac, our oldest, just celebrated his 10th birthday and entered the world of double digits. 🙂


We are continuing our Creole lessons while here as well, which is a huge thing for us still since we are still new in our language learning and have a lot to go still. Jim will be teaching April how to drive stick shift while here this summer as well so when we go back to Haiti, she will only have to focus on learning how to drive in Haiti and not worry about learning stick in Haiti as well.

We keep in touch with our house staff a few times each week to see how they are doing. We miss them greatly and are excited to see them when we return. RMI has been working hard as much as they can during this time of the virus, because not only is Haiti dealing with the virus like the rest of the world but a drought as well, making food scarce right now so RMI has been making food deliveries to our church partnerships to help those communities.

We look forward to heading back to Haiti in the next few months to continue the ministry there that God has called us to. Our first year there may have looked nothing like we would have thought or even trained for as we went through a nation wide country lock-down in the fall and then the pandemic in the spring and April getting sick, HOWEVER, God knew and He went before us, He was with us and we felt His peace and presence. This year has grown us more than any other year has ever in our lives and for that, we praise God. During the months we were able to do ministry, we saw so many lives changed, were able to share the gospel, encourage others, and become a part of the RMI family there. We are excited to see what year two brings for God’s kingdom!

“God doesn’t call us to a convenient life, He calls us to an important life.”

– Ann Voskamp

We know right now, these can be scary times, unknown times, times where we don’t know what to believe, who to listen to or what is exactly going on. We have been encouraged by the story of David and Goliath. You see, just like with Covid-19, it’s a very real and present threat, it has done a lot of damage and it is scary. Goliath was a very real and present threat to the Israelites, he was bigger, stronger and very scary. They knew the facts…and the facts didn’t look good for them. He could wipe them out. We know some of the facts too, the media tries to tell us the facts they want us to hear, BUT we can’t be like the Israelites who got so hung up on the facts of Goliath and how daunting he seemed, that they coward back and were scared to do anything.

Let’s not focus on the FACTS around us so much to where it scares us into a life of panic and fear and instead focus on TRUTH! David knew how God went before him all those other times he faced animals in the wild as he kept his sheep. He trusted God with his life, with this battle and with the outcome. David knew the facts too, but He knew his God was bigger, stronger, more powerful and His God KNEW THE WHOLE PICTURE! Friends, God knows the entire picture of Covid-19 and we can trust Him with it. We don’t say this because we don’t want you to take precautions. Please do take precautions for your family. We say this so you don’t live in fear like the enemy wants you to. The enemy wants so badly for our world to be encapsulated in fear that we freeze, we don’t live our lives, we don’t keep spreading the gospel or living life to the full as God has called us to do. So in these unknown times, lets keep looking up to our KNOWN GOD, our God who sees the whole picture and our God who goes before us and will never leave us. He truly has the whole world in His hands. Leave it to him, rest in Him, seek Him, and let His peace rule in your hearts during this time!

Praying for you & thankful for EACH of you!


The Starkeys