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Our Story

·      The Haitian community in Nashville is comparatively smaller than those in Florida, New York, New Jersey, and Canada. Many Haitians began migrating to Nashville in the early 1990’s as families were trying to escape political and economic turbulence from the native country.  As more and more families established residency in Nashville, there became a growing need to connect.

·      In 1996, the growing Haitian community in Nashville started a prayer cell under the leadership of Evangelist Thervy Damassi. What began as a house prayer meeting of 20 people developed into a fully functioning group within a 5-year span.

·      In the early 2000’s, as the number of congregants grew, so did the diversity of people.

·      By 2002, there was an amicable restructuration resulting in the establishment of three Protestant churches and one Catholic Church: Théophile Church of Christ, First Haitian Baptist and the Ebenezer House of prayer.

·      In 2007, Eben-Ezer House of prayer, a small congregation of about 40 people sought the sanctuary at First Church of the Nazarene and was offered the Wise Chapel under the leadership of Pastor Damassi. With the support of Rev. Pascal Permis (Director of the Nazarene Mission Strategies for USA/Canada), Dr. Gary Henecke (Senior Pastor of First Church), and the pastoral staff led by Rev. Dale Benson (Senior Associate Pastor), the Haitian congregation was fully accepted into the Church of the Nazarene family.

·       The summer of 2008, Dr. Maromy Samuel and his wife Nahomie Cidel-Samuel came to complete their theological studies at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, and were soon solicited to be Pastors to the Haitian congregation of First Church of the Nazarene.

·      We have found great inspiration from the vision of our new lead Pastor, Dr. Kevin Ulmet along with a dynamic pastoral staff as well as the church board who have developed a passion for a multicultural church. 

·      The Haitian congregation purports to become a multiracial Church. Seeking to extend the life of Christ in a larger multicultural and multigenerational setting in Middle Tennessee.

·      During our first spiritual renewal week back in July 2009, the Assistant District Superintendent, Dr. Bill Weismann, challenged us as an immigrant congregation to develop a multicultural, bilingual, and multigenerational church. God is gathering people with skills and resources to do the work that he is calling us to do in the city.

On Sunday, January 6, 2013, the Haitian congregation transitioned its Sunday morning worship services from Wise Chapel to the Heritage Chapel.