Haitian Covenant Ministry

Ministry Update September 2, 2017

Ministry Update - July 2, 2017

St. Mary's Haiti Team Visits Boklo

Ministry Update - June 25, 2017

St. Mary's Haiti Team Visits the Schools

Ministry Update - June 18, 2017

St. Mary's Haiti Team Visits the Canteen & Dispensary

In the afternoon, we visited the dispensary and delivered six suitcases of over-the-counter medications, thanks to donations from St. Mary’s parishioners. The dispensary nurse, SisterMarjorie, began working with St. Mary’s parishioner and pharmacist, Sheila Seed, to sort through and categorize the medications

The Roche-a-bateau dispensary has the feel of a community center. Locals gather there to receive medical care for themselves and their children, sometimes after walking for hours.While we were there, a mother arrived carrying her sick infant and hoping the dispensary could help. In October, she had lost two of her other children to hurricane Matthew.

In the back of the dispensary Sister Marjorie was teaching a nutrition class attended by mothers and their young children.Malnutrition is a significant problem in Roche-a-Bateau. At the dispensary, families are invited to receive basic nutritional information and are sent home with a small supply of healthy foods.

Later in the week we were invited back to the dispensary and introduced to a visiting doctor from Port-au-Prince. We soon found ourselves in the center of a semi-official ceremony where we were thanked for the medications provided by St.Mary’s parishioners and were presented with local crafts.

Ministry Update - June 14, 2017

Progress made on Roof Repairs

Below are pictures sent to St. Mary's from Fr. Serge showing the progress that has been made in repairing the roof of the church.

Ministry Update - June 11, 2017

St. Mary's Haiti Team Visits St. Michel's

Ministry Update - May 27, 2017

Very early this morning eight members of our parish - Charlie Eisenmann, Lane Eisenmann, Tom Josie, Lynne Perreault, Sheila Seed, Patrick Seed, Martha Serafin, Barbara Trudel & Fr. Mike departed for a long-awaited trip Haiti.  

Ministry members were initially scheduled to travel to Haiti in November 2016 and had planned to visit with Fr. Serge and the parishioners of St. Michel's and to help them with a few repairs in the Parish Center and Church.  Hurricane Matthew and the devastation it had on our sister parish in Roche-a-Bateau changed all of that.  The Parish Center they had planned on painting had completely crumbled, the Church they were going to tile had collapsed. The trip was postponed.  

As we quickly learned from Fr. Serge, Hurricane Matthew created the need for a different type of support and response.  Through the generous donations of St. Mary's parishioners, we were able to raise over 25,000.  We requested and received estimates for the major repairs that were needed and began sending money in support of those projects.  Great progress is being made as we have seen through the photos and regular updates from Fr. Serge.  This week ministry members will have the opportunity to work alongside parishioners of St. Michel's to assist them with rebuilding part of the Parish Center so that the daily feeding program can continue.

Our twinning relationship with St. Michel's unites us and brings us into communion with each other.  As you participate in the Eucharist tomorrow at St. Mary's, they will be celebrating Mass with us at St. Michel's and we'll be united by the Eucharist and the real presence of Jesus.  

Please keep those traveling this week in prayer for safety, health, strength and faithfulness as they minister to and with our brothers and sisters in Haiti.

THANK YOU to all who donated over-the-counter medications over the past few weekends.  We were able to pack 8 suitcases full of your donations along with children's toys to bring along with us!

Thank-you to all who helped us to welcome the Haitian Choir from St. Angela’s in Mattapan at the 9:00am & 11:00am Masses last weekend. THANK-YOU to all who gave so generously to the second collection to support our sister parish in Haiti – St. Michel’s in Roche-a-Bateau. We collected $5,681 for St. Michel’s! 

Below are a few pictures Fr. Serge sent us this week that show the progress in the Church Repair project underway at St. Michel's.  On May 27th eight members of our parish Haiti Committee will travel to Roche-a-Bateau to visit Fr. Serge and the parishioners of St. Michel’s to assist in helping to rebuild part of the parish hall so that the daily feeding program can continue.  We also plan to bring 8 suitcases filled with over the counter medications for clinic in Roche-a-Bateau. Parishioners making the trip to Haiti from May 27 – June 3 are: Charlie Eisenmann, Lane Eisenmann, Tom Josie, Lynne Perreault, Sheila Seed, Patrick Seed, Martha Serafin, Barbara Trudel & Fr. Mike.  

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: 

Father Serge Denis, OMI 

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


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-a-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-a-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

The hydraulic and electric systems have been fully restored. 

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. 

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