About International Faith Missions
International Faith Missions was started in November 1980 by Mervin Sommers and Ezra Miller. At the beginning of our ministry we only focused on relief work such as: clothing distribution, renting rooms or houses for the homeless and buying self-help businesses. As time progressed we saw the futility of only meeting the physical needs of the poor so we incorporated Christian ministry with our physical aid programs.
In 1982, with the few funds we had, we began constructing a house in Fond Parisien, the house was not completed until 1986.In January of 1986 Brother Payot Jacques began a small Bible study. October of 1986 Merv and Lois Sommers moved their family to Haiti for three months, and began pioneering the work in Fond Parisien. Bible studies were continued through that time, and the church was officially established in September 1988 when members were taken in and we held the first Communion. In February 1995 Pastor Voltaire Oscar was ordained to lead the church.
In 1981 we began our initial work with schools by taking over a school from International Fellowship Haven in Saint Marc, and in 1986 we started our school in Fond Parisien, where we currently have over 400 children enrolled.
In 1990 we opened a school in Soliette, there were 175 students enrolled at that time. In 1998 Hurricane George completely destroyed our buildings, leaving only a riverbed where our school once stood. For a time classes were held in a rented building until land could be purchased and a building erected, later the school was entirely closed.
In 1995 Dr. John Alexis was hired and we opened our medical clinic. Within a few months we added a pharmacy and laboratory. In 2004, Dr. Jose Cedeno was added to our team of clinic staff. We are currently seeing about 350 patients a week.
In May 1996 an outreach was started in Jimani, Dominican Republic, the church was established in January 2000.
In December 2002 we dedicated land in Na Plezi for another outreach. Evangelistic services were held in January of 2003 and we began conducting Bible studies and instructing new believers.
As the Lord provided, we began constructing a 46-bed hospital. Phase 1 and 2 of 5 phases have been completed and we are currently using it for a Monday thru Friday clinic.
From the onset of our work in 1980, the orphanage at Morne Rouge was supported with basic food staples and relief items. This work continues today and there are 75 orphans being cared for there.
In 2005 we began constructing our own Children's Home, the building was finished in 2009 and we are now caring for needy children.
2012 brought a new aspect to IFM as Merv & Lois Sommers stepped down from the day-to -day work direction of IFM, and passed the torch to Ivan & Linda Miller, of Millersburg, Ohio. Ivan and Linda served in this capacity for two years. Durwin and Jena Miller are now serving as executive director.
Numerous other projects which IFM is involved in are: adult literacy classes, sewing classes, self-help projects, tract distribution, visitation, disaster relief housing construction, general relief work, and literature translation.
The year of 2016 brought a few more changes to IFM. We accepted the opportunity to take over the work that Heart of Compassion was doing in Haiti. The school Every Child School serves about 240 students in the mountain area of Soliette.