MAF inspires a Haitian intern to achieve new heights
The first time Zacharie François saw his country of Haiti from the air, it was a pivotal moment in his life. He saw the joy on his little brother’s face as MAF pilot Will White took them to Pignon. He, too, felt joy as he realized the possibilities that aviation could bring to his country. It was at this moment that his dream of becoming a missionary pilot was born.
That was eleven years ago. After he graduated from high school in Port-au-Prince last year, Zacharie started interning in the MAF hangar. The pilots have been working with him on his maintenance training.
“I first became interested in aviation when Will White brought his son and me to the national airport and showed us around,” said Zacharie. “Since then I have always had that in my mind. Growing up around the Whites and other MAF missionary families, that love of what they were doing kept on growing in me.”
Zacharie was practically a member of the White’s family. Being somewhat close in age, William, the oldest child, and Zacharie are like brothers. His parents, Georges and Chrisméne, have been employed by MAF families for the past 26 years! In fact, for 16 of those years, they lived right behind the Whites. So their families and children were pretty close.
After the Whites left Haiti in 2015, MAF’s Christine Harms felt the Lord was leading her to work with Zacharie.
“At that time, I didn’t know his dream of becoming a pilot. I knew he had just graduated from high school, which is a big accomplishment here. Very few people pass the national exams,” said Christine. “I wanted to see what was next for him and how I could help.”
Christine tutored him in English and worked with him to pass his Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). He also took a class downtown, which his family paid for, at no small cost to them. Zacharie scored well enough on his test that he was accepted to Moody. But his financial situation prevented him from attending this year. He’s continuing to raise support and hopes to go next year.
“Working with Zach reminds me that God knows our needs and arranges things exactly as He plans. It’s a blessing for me as I use my talent for teaching, and yet, that blessing extends to Zach and, God willing, to his future passengers years down the line,” said Christine.
One of the key priorities of the MAF Haiti team is to foster knowledge of aviation among the Haitians. “We know that people like Zach can reach Haiti far better than we can,” added Christine, “and the future of missions depends on all of us working together.”
Zacharie hopes others will be inspired by his story and venture down the same path that he is on, to become a missionary pilot.
“The most encouraging part of working with Zach is seeing his faith: He truly believes that anything is possible if God is at work,” explained Christine. “His sincerity and optimism are refreshing in a place where doubt and apathy are rampant.”
“I totally want to be a missionary pilot, in Haiti, if possible,” said Zacharie. “I have seen what they’ve been doing here and I want to be part of it. I also want to show others that when you have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, He will not let you down.”
Want to know how you can help Zacharie? Contact Christine Harms at firstname.lastname@example.org.