In 2002, I (Kenny Ellis) was serving as a church planting pastor in Lakeland, FL. One Sunday morning, a well-dressed Haitian man attended our worship service. I spoke with him after the service and invited him to have coffee later that week. His name is Jonathan Capre and since that day, we have been friends and partners in an amazing mission.
Jonathan grew up in rural Haiti and his family had established a network of churches in schools that he now oversees. In 2003, Jonathan invited me to join him on a trip to Haiti. After several days of traveling on muddy, mountain roads and meeting people in several of the churches and villages, my heart was captured. The people of Haiti are warm, welcoming and resilient. The country is filled with natural beauty. However, the need is overwhelming and undeniable. I came home with a resolve to commit the rest of my life, in some way, to loving and serving the people of Haiti. Jennie was completely supportive even though traveling to Haiti at that time was not an option with our boys being so young.
After a few years and several more trips, Jonathan asked me to visit a mountain community called Chauffard where he was considering planting a new church. In 2008, we made the 4-hour journey into the mountains and arrived in Chauffard. Within a few minutes, I knew it would be among these people and in this village that we would be devoting our lives. Jennie was able to join me on one of the next trips and she also fell in love with the people and the place. We decided to launch a non-profit (CPI) to provide a base for our work here in the US. Since then, countless people have gotten involved with our mission. The Crossing Church in Clermont and First Presbyterian Church in Lakeland have been awesome partners. You can see some of what has been accomplished in “Our Focus” section below. We have a great deal of work ahead of us and we always need more partners…why not join the team?
Kenny and Jennie Ellis
Kenny and Jennie have been married 18 years and have four boys (Kobe, Connor, Coleman, & Cooper). They reside in Lakeland, FL. Kenny serves as the Executive Director of CPI and Jennie is the Child Sponsorship Program Director. Kenny also serves as the Director of Discipleship at First Presbyterian Churcent goes here
Jonathan and Louna Capre
Jonathan and Louna have two boys (Joey and Jonah) and reside in Lakeland, FL.
Jonathan grew up in Haiti as part of a family that started churches and schools in rural areas. He came to the states to further his studies and to activate partners to join the mission. He provides oversight to the network of churches in Haiti and facilitates all of CPI’s efforts in Chauffard.
Our mission is to practically love the people of Chauffard through friendship, collaboration and support while they work for a better quality of life.
The Lausanne Covenant
CPI has adopted the Lausanne Covenant as our published statement of faith and conviction. If you would like more information regarding this covenant and its authors, please visit their website at www.lausanne.org.