This blog series takes a closer look at some of the Bible verses used in past newsletters, posts on Facebook, and more. Read on to learn more about these verses, why they were chosen, and what they mean to Branch Schools!
Mark 16:15 - "Jesus said to them, 'Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.'"
Mark 16:15 is the central theme verse for Branch Schools' ongoing summer campaign: "One of the 100." The goal of this campaign is to reach 100 individual donations between June 30 and September 1, to be able to welcome the students back to school with the support of 100 donors cheering them on! At the beginning of this campaign, we reflected on what would happen if Branch Schools disappeared, and Director Boursiquot shared these thoughts: (slightly paraphrased for translation)
"We would like, at this end of the school year, to tell you that your actions have a serious positive impact. If you become discouraged or get tired and give up, there will be a great price for the orphans and children at the schools. Words fail us, but we are grateful. Thank you again."
Your support and donations at Branch Schools matter. But why was this particular verse chosen for this campaign?
At the beginning of chapter 16, Mark writes of Jesus' resurrection and appearance to Mary Magdalene, and in verse 14, Jesus goes to all of His disciples. Shortly after verse 15, Jesus ascends into heaven. His direction to the disciples to "proclaim the gospel to the whole creation" is highlighted in its importance, as it is one of the last sentences Mark records before Jesus' ascension. The gospel had just unfolded before the disciples' very eyes: the crucified but risen Savior standing before them. Jesus now commands them to tell "the whole creation" about this gospel.
This command mirrors the words Jesus spoke in Matthew 28:19-20, which are often referred to as the "Great Commission," where Jesus says to "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.". Similarly, Luke writes of Jesus' words to the disciples: "repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in [Jesus'] name to all nations" (Luke 24:47). The repetition of this command again highlights the essential need to preach the gospel across the entire world.
Sharing this amazing Good News to all of creation is exactly why Branch Schools exists. We have the immense joy of teaching hundreds of young students that their sins are forgiven because of Jesus their Savior. Director Jeanot made a comment several years ago that has continued to remind us of the importance of preaching the gospel to all the world:
"If we did not have my school, all of my orphans would not learn to read and write – I could not afford to send them to a public school because of the costs. I would have to choose from among my children."
Thanks to our incredible donors, Branch Schools doesn't have to choose who can enroll at school and learn God's Word. Every child from every background, including those unable to pay school fees, is welcomed. Every child reads the Bible; every child receives a copy of the catechism--and every year, enrollment grows higher and higher.
We are so excited for this upcoming school year, when the students return to their classrooms to dive into God's Word once again. For some new students, this may be their first time learning about Jesus. This summer campaign is about growing the Branch Schools family even wider--both in supporting more enrolled students and getting to know more donors! Thanks to the support, prayers, and generosity of these donors, Branch Schools will continue to preach the gospel across Haiti for as long as possible. Thank you!
If you would like to support our summer "One of the 100" campaign, please visit our "Donate" page:
Branch Lutheran Schools of Haiti, Inc.