Haitian Covenant Ministry

Since 1994 St. Mary’s has extended a helping hand to St. Michel’s Parish in Roche-a-Bateau, Haiti. Through our twinning partnership we provide $1,300 a month in support to this very large parish in the poorest country in the western hemisphere.  

Charlie Eisenmann - email Charlie




Ministry Update - January 4th


Good evening my friends!

First of all, be assured of our prayers, that God gives you strength, humility, peace, health, courage, and wisdom and grants you the necessary gifts for the fulfillment of His purposes. Happy and Holy Year 2017 in faith. This is an opportunity for me to convey to you the appreciation of the parishioners and of my congregation for all your support to this great project of rehabilitating the presbytery. Secondly, I am very pleased to share with you what follows:

  1. The hydraulic and electric systems have been fully restored. 
  2. We are still working on the roofing of the house. Please note: The old foundation being too weak to support the weight of a “concrete roofing, my Congregation decided to realize the renovation with new wood and metal sheets instead. Of course, it will now cost less than we projected. With the remaining amount, we decided to also renovate the outbuildings of the Rectory, which was an emergency even if not in our priorities. You will receive shortly our financial report for the amount received for the renovation of the Rectory. 

Father Serge Denis, OMI 

P.S. Pictures attached.   Click here to view more before and after photos of the Rectory repairs.




Ministry Update - 4th Sunday in Advent

 


About Our Twinning Covenant With St. Michel's

For 25 years, the Haitian Apostolate Ministry of the Diocese of Worcester, MA (HA) has worked side-by-side with the people of Les Cayes, Haiti. Sr. Marie-Judith Dupuy, a Haitian born Sister of St. Anne has been the Director since 2006 and through her faith, hard-work and knowledge of the Haitian language and culture has accomplished amazing things. The HA coordinates twinning covenants between 17 Worcester parishes and parishes in Haiti. Twinning is a relationship of sharing and solidarity with the Haitian people.

Since 1994 St. Mary’s Parish has extended a helping hand to St. Michel’s Parish in Roche-a-Bateau, Haiti. Through our twinning partnership, we provide $1,300 a month in support to this very large parish in the poorest country in the western hemisphere. Last year we celebrated our 25th Anniversary of our twinning relationship between the Diocese of Worcester and the Diocese of Les Cayes, Haiti. Members of our Haitian Covenant Ministry joined Bishop McManus at this special celebration held last October at the Cathedral.

The weekend of November 5th & 6th, members of our Haiti Covenant Ministry spoke at all Masses to provide an update on the impact of Hurricane Matthew on our brothers and sisters in Haiti.  Through their words, posters, and the video below. they share with us how the poor and underprivileged in Haiti are suffering even more. The photos and stories of loss of life and destruction of towns as well as ongoing disease and hunger has subsided from the news, but is still very real. 

 
 
More Information:
A Glimpse of St. Michel's and Our Twinning Covenant Work

Lynne Perreault, a Haiti Covenant Ministry member put together the slideshow below that shares before and after pictures and a glimpse of the work this ministry does and will continue to do to support St. Michel's.




Ministry Update - November 5-6, 2016
 


The original plan for members of the Haiti Ministry was to reach out to the parish community today on behalf of our sister parish in Roche a Bateau. While we are still doing that, the messaging today is much different than we had expected. We were planning on sharing with you the details of our upcoming trip. This coming Wednesday is when we were scheduled to depart. We were particularly excited because we had a group of 10 that including a physician and three recent college grads who were planning to make the trip. Our work once we got there was also planned. We were going to help electrically wire and paint the Parish Center and tile the floor of St. Michel’s Church. We were also very excited to meet with St. Michel’s pastor who was ready to share and show us some of the improvements and betterments he had made with support from St. Mary’s.


Those plans changed with Hurricane Matthew.  Roche a Bateau is located on the South West Peninsula of Haiti and, as you may have seen on the news, that is where Matthew wreaked the most havoc.  Our sister parish, St. Michel’s and Roche Bateau experienced complete devastation.   The Parish Center we were going to paint is in crumbles. The Church we were going to tile collapsed.  The Rectory was severely damaged.  One of the mission chapels which housed two classrooms is ruined and the school across the street which we support financially is no longer functional. The town was completely flooded.  Crops were wiped out.   Mud slid down from the deforested hillside.  Livestock died in the water and bred Cholera conditions. We knew we could no longer make the trip but we were anxious to learn how we could most effectively help.  The immediate need was for clean water and food.  Organizations such as Food for the Poor, Catholic Relief Services and the Red Cross are on the ground in Haiti and responded, as best they could, to the immediate humanitarian needs. 

Eventually, we heard from Fr. Serge and it was interesting to learn and understand some of the issues that weighed heavily on his mind.  He was very concerned about the townspeople’s records that were damaged when the Rectory flooded.  In Haiti the parish priest is like the mayor and the rectory is like city hall. A place of gathering and a place to store documents such as marriage licenses and birth certificates.  Indeed, the flooded, roof damaged Rectory was the first place the St. Michel community gathered when the hurricane passed.  So, it wasn’t surprising to hear from Fr. Serge that his first priority for assistance from St. Mary’s is to help restore the rectory and then help rebuild the school.  

We received an estimate of $11,585 to repair the rectory and $12,149 to repair the school.  We have already sent $2,000 to begin work on the Rectory.  These rebuilding projects will be an ongoing effort but our hope today is to raise enough money to repair the rectory and then begin to focus on the school.  We kindly ask for your support during the 2nd collection. Or, perhaps even to consider a monthly or ongoing gift.  Please note 100% of contributions will be wired directly to St. Michel. It’s also important to note that when we do re-schedule our trip to Roche Bateau the group travels at their own expense.

The latest word from Fr. Serge is that Masses are being held outside and he hopes to resume school classes this month, even if they are not in the school.  He also sent some photographs of the devastation that I encourage you to take a look at on the way out of church.   It is our hope, over time, that we will be able to share with you some photos of a rebuilt community.

- Charlie Eisenmann, Haiti Covenant Ministry Chair

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