Greetings from the President - May 2013
BonJou! Ki jan ou ye? That's Haitian Creole for 'Good Morning, how are you?' I hope you are doing well and that God pours out his blessings on you and your family. Thank you for your continued support of our brothers and sisters in Haiti. These blessed souls, God's beloved poor, do not have the resources that are so readily available to us here in the United States. In the small city of Clarksville, there are several medical centers, hundreds of qualified doctors with a wide variety of specializations, and about two dozen well-stocked and professionally manned pharmacies ready to serve the needs of the local population. In addition, many agencies stand ready to assist anyone who needs a meal. Sadly this is not the case in the village of Petit Bourg du Borgne where Immaculate Conception's mission work is centered. There, only our one small clinic serves the medical needs of some 65,000 souls. I am sure that those of you who have seen the village first hand understand this, and that is of course what drives you to return, or to continue to help in whatever way possible. Once you have experienced Haiti, you cannot turn away, you are never the same.
We all know the facts: it is the poorest country in the western hemisphere, has the worst water quality in the world, and has a per capita income of about 100 U. S. dollars per year. To say that life is hard in Haiti is like calling the Mississippi a creek. Haiti is the definition of hard. Yet what we have all observed is that people there somehow maintain a sense of joy, a sense of gratitude to God for what they have, and a sense of hope. For many Haitians, we are the hands and feet that provide that hope. We continue to recognize the God-given dignity of each person and continue to seek and find Jesus in those whom we serve.
God works through us, just as he worked through the apostles, just as he has worked through countless others down through the ages. The Holy Spirit relies on us to give that resounding Yes, the same Yes that Mary gave when she said to the angel, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord. Be it done unto me according to Thy word." We, too, put ourselves at the disposal of Our Lord when we say Yes to the call to serve God's people in Haiti. No matter how humble the task, no matter whether we actually go to Haiti or simply provide our time or resources here, when we say Yes to this work, we cooperate with God's will. It is my great pleasure and privilege to say thank you to all of you who continue to work to fulfill Christ's injunction to care for the poor. So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for all that you do to relieve the suffering of God's beloved poor. May God bless you and your family all the days of your life.
Deacon Tim Winters
Immaculate Conception Ministry to St Jules Clinic, Haiti