Elsie Lherisson grew up in Haiti, but she moved to New York to start her career. She heard the Gospel, received Jesus, and began attending The Brooklyn Tabernacle. In a few years, she felt called by God to leave her successful career and move back to Haiti. In 1988, she returned to her homeland and worked as a school administrator at Christian Haitian Outreach until 1994. In 1996, Elsie started a children's ministry called Caribbean Grace Tabernacle in Port-au-Prince. Her first ministry meeting had 25 children from some of the poorest areas of Port-au-Prince attending. The ministry grew to close to 800 children and youth attending prior to the 2010 earthquake.
In Jan 2010, a 7.1 magnitude earthquake destroyed much of the capital, Port-au-Prince; more than 220,000 people died, and more than 1.5 million were left homeless. That day, Elsie miraculously escaped with her life when her apartment building collapsed around her. She eventually made it back to the ministry house, where Caribbean Grace Tabernacle became a disaster relief center for the community. Sadly, the ministry lost one child, and many homes were damaged; but miraculously, many other lives were spared. Teams from The Brooklyn Tabernacle, among others, came to do medical/dental clinics for the community immediately after the disaster.
Elsie’s ministry continues to equip young people for life and ministry. Many children that were saved in the early days have graduated from school, have careers, have gotten married, and are having children of their own who now attend the ministry. Some are now in ministry themselves.
The ministry is also greatly concerned with the physical well-being and future of its youth. Since the ministry’s inception, thousands of children have been provided full healthy meals; many have had their education sponsored; families have received care packages; and many medical needs have been provided for. Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere; therefore, its needs are great, but its potential is greater.