Past & Present
Tragedy Strikes Haiti
At 4:53 pm on Tuesday, January 12, 2010, a magnitude 7 earthquake struck the island of Haiti. The tremour was centered approximately 15 km (10 miles) south-west of Haiti's capital city of Port-au-Prince and was quickly followed by two strong aftershocks of 5.9 and 5.5 magnitude. As can be imagined, the country's buildings and people were devastated.
Worldwide emergency assistance has been quickly organized and is attempting to assist with the aftermath of an infrastructure and buildings left in ruins, the rescue of buried citizens, and a population in dire need of food, water and medical treament. Unfortunately, assistance has been hampered by a crippled transportion system in attempts to reach an affected population of possibly one third of Haiti's 9 million people. Estimates place the probable dead at over 200,000.
In the early morning hours of Wednesday, January 20, another aftershock of about 5.9 magnitude again shook the stricken Port-au-Prince area.
Our twin parish of St. Gabriel in Beau Séjour was practically on top of the original quake's epicenter and suffered greatly. Fr. Ronal, Pastor of St. Gabriel's Parish, is alive and safe but he has reported many deaths in Beau Séjour, plus the destruction of it's main buildings, including the church, rectory, school and the recently reconstructed medical clinic, used in May 2009 by a St. Margaret Mary-sponsored dental team. The Archbishop of Port-au-Prince, Monsignor Joseph Serge Miot, who has hosted St. Margaret Mary parishioners and was instrumental in support of Fr Ronal and St. Gabriels, was killed in a building collapse and will be greatly missed.
Our sisters and brothers of St. Gabriels have our prayers, thoughts and continued support.
Prayer for Haiti
God of compassion and love, we come to ask your grace, comfort and strength for our sisters and brothers in Haiti.
As they cope with the devastation of the recent earthquake, be their strength, be their comfort, be their solace.
May they always feel your endless love for them, especially at this time of great suffering.
We pray for those who have died, especially Archbishop Miot. Bring them into your shining presence. We pray for those who have survived. Dispel their fears, ease their anguish, grant them healing.
St. Margaret Mary, pray for them.
St. Gabriel, pray for them.
Hearts for Haiti (February 2019)
With the generosity of our parishioners, an amazing amount of $563.75 was raised. All this money will be used to educate children in Beau-Sejour. The hearts will be delivered to Father Fernand and he will distribute them to his parishioners after Sunday Mass. This is a beautiful way to connect with our sister parish.
Magdalena Stimphil is a young woman from Beau Séjour who, through sponsorship from the parishioners of St Margaret Mary Parish, has become a nurse now serving her fellow citizens of Beau Séjour. Magdalen's salary is covered by the generosity of Holy Family Parish in St Petersburg Florida.
On Thanks to the generous financial support of our parishioners, Magdalena (on the right in this photo, beside her mom) recently received her nursing degree and has now returned to Beau Séjour to provide full-time medical services for her community.
Holy Family Parish of St Petersburg Florida, also twinned with St Gabriel Parish, produced a video of their recent medical mission to Beau Séjour. The blessing and re-opening of the medical clinic, destroyed by the violent earthquate in 2010, can be viewed at approximately the 1:05 minute mark of the video below.
Thank you letter to HWCDSB re Pilgrimage Walk Contribution