About Our Founder/Executive Director
Betsy Hake felt a pull to missions at eight years of age when a missionary visited her church but it wasn’t until she was in her last year of High School in a Fellowship of Christian Athletes meeting that she came to understand that God wanted to have a personal relationship with her. She was excited about knowing Jesus up close and personal but wasn’t so excited about letting Him have control of her life. She attended DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana and studied nursing and basically lived a double life….wanting to please God in her heart but looking for love in all the wrong places. Just before graduation and after a mission trip to Guatemala, Betsy relinquished the rights to her life to the Lord and began a journey with Him that would radically change her life plans.
She arrived in Puerto Cortes, Honduras in August 1980 to teach second grade in a bilingual school and after two years sensed God calling her to long term missions. God chose Trinity Episcopal School For Ministry, a Biblically based seminary lodged in the hills outside Pittsburgh, to begin to work on Betsy’s character. The challenge? Mountains of pride and good old German self-reliance. God would continue the challenge of removing those mountains when Betsy returned to run a small clinic on the North Coast of Honduras. God used a servant named Rosario de Jerezano (affectionately known as “The Bazooka”) to assist Him in this work and His chosen tools were fasting and early morning prayer.
Six years later Betsy moved to the capital city of Honduras and joined a team of SAMS missionaries whose goal was to plant a church in the city. It was this team that would be further used by God to help her learn to trust in Him and not rely upon her own understanding. She learned to seek her worth, not in man’s approval or in a position (what exactly did she do during those years?) but in Christ. It was towards the end of her time working with the team that God put a burden on her heart for the women trapped in prostitution. She asked Him, “Who are the people in this city who will never set foot in Your church without us going to them?”
Influenced greatly by the book “The Cross and the Switchblade” by David Wilkerson and by George Mueller’s autobiography on living by faith, Betsy took a step of faith to begin Jericho Ministries. The name was chosen to remind them always that this was a work that could only be accomplished by the power of God. The glory would be for Him alone. Betsy has been blessed with an amazing staff, international and circus-like in nature. She has a passion for evangelism and discipleship and loves to witness that which the world despises and rejects totally transformed and made useful through His power. She desires more than anything that the name of her Beloved be lifted high.