Christian Aid Ministries: Who runs it and where does its money come from?

As many as 17 people working with an Ohio-based Amish organization, Christian Aid Ministries, have been taken in the La Tremblay area on the outskirts of the capital, Port-au-Prince


                            Christian Aid Ministries: Who runs it and where does its money come from?
Christian Aid Ministries sets up a base in a Haiti mountain village to begin rebuilding efforts (Representational image/Christian Aid Ministries)

Seventeen American and Canadian missionaries kidnapped in Haiti are part of an Ohio-based missionary organization worth tens of millions of dollars. Experts have now warned that it is possible that the victims will be ransomed for up to $1 million each. As many as 17 people working with an Ohio-based Amish organization, Christian Aid Ministries, have been taken in the La Tremblay area on the outskirts of the capital, Port-au-Prince. 

Who runs Christian Aid Ministries?

The missionary organization is registered with the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability. It is very well funded as the members receive a massive amount of donations from the Christian community. The 17 people have been abducted by the 400 Mawozo gang, the members of which might demand a fee for the hostages' release.

READ MORE

Disturbing video shows Taliban BEHEAD Afghan soldier, celebrate with his severed head

Jen Psaki calls possible use of whips by Border Patrol on Haitian migrants 'horrific'

The missionary organization last year reported $87 million in assets, including $17.3 million in cash and almost $20 million 'gifts in kind'. The executive director of the Center for Analysis and Research in Human Rights, Gèdèon Jean, told The New York Times that the abductors are likely to demand $1 million per hostage in ransom for each kidnapped person. The Center for Analysis and Research in Human Rights is an advocacy group in Port-au-Prince. "They're going to negotiate," he said. "The hostages 'are going to be freed — that's for sure. We don't know in how many days, but they're going to negotiate. The 400 Mawozo gang don't want to kill the hostages." 

"Nowadays the gangs, especially in a situation that is a little financially vulnerable, they increase kidnappings to have enough money," he added. "o the motive behind the surge in kidnappings for us is a financial one, if the gangs need money to buy ammunition, to get weapons, to be able to function."

On Sunday, October 17, the State Department confirmed that 17 people have been abducted, including 16 US missionaries and one Canadian in Haiti. The five men, seven women and five children -- one of them just two years old -- were kidnapped from a bus that was on its way to the airport to drop off some of the members of their party. Christian Aid Ministries said in a statement: 'We request urgent prayer for the group of Christian Aid Ministries workers who were abducted while on a trip to visit an orphanage on Saturday, October 16."

"We are seeking God's direction for a resolution, and authorities are seeking ways to help. The group was founded in 1981 'to be a trustworthy and efficient channel for Amish, Mennonite, and other conservative Anabaptist groups and individuals to minister to physical and spiritual needs around the world," Christian Aid Ministries added.

Haiti has the highest per-capita kidnapping rate in the world. At least 628 people, including 29 foreigners, were abducted from January to September. Port-au-Prince now witnesses more abductions than Bogota, Mexico City, and Sao Paulo combined.