On Jan. 12, only a few hours after the catastrophic 7.0 earthquake that devastated Haiti, Bishop Leo Frade issued an appeal to the diocese “to respond to this crisis in a country that needs our prayers and help.”
The bishop has asked that donations be directed to Episcopal Charities of Southeast Florida; contributions can be made online at http://www.ecsefl.org/, or checks can be mailed to: Episcopal Charities of Southeast Florida, 8895 North Military Trail #205C, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410. Funds will be distributed through—or at the direction of—the Diocese of Haiti, as soon as Bishop Frade is able to contact Bishop Jean Zaché Duracin to determine what will be most helpful.
Bishop Duracin is unharmed, but his wife, Marie-Edith, has a broken leg. Their home was destroyed, as were the Cathédrale Sainte Trinité, the cathedral complex (including a school), the College St. Pierre, and the convent of the Sisters of St. Margaret.
Information from Haiti, including items from across the country on missionaries, church responses and persons in Haiti, is constantly being updated by The Episcopal Church Office of Communication at a new webpage.
Last night, Jan. 15, Fr. Smith Milien, priest-in-charge at St. Paul et les Martyrs d’Haiti, Miami, left for the Dominican Republic, where he is joining with Bishop Julio Holguin and a group from our companion Diocese of Dominican Republic today to drive to Port-au-Prince to meet with Bishop Duracin, assess the situation and offer assistance.
Several of our congregations are already partnering with other organizations and community groups or individuals to collect relief supplies, and the diocese will be setting up several drop-off locations for supplies, as soon as we have specific information on (1) what is most needed, and (2) how these goods can be most efficiently transported and effectively distributed.
In the words of our bishop, in his Jan. 12 appeal: “While we wait for more details of how we can help, let us surround the people of Haiti—and their anxious family members in our midst—with our prayers.”
There will be a diocesan Eucharist for Haiti on Jan. 23, at 4:30 p.m., at Holy Sacrament, 2801 N. University Dr., Pembroke Pines. Bishop Frade will be celebrant and preacher, and the Haitian clergy of the diocese will concelebrate. This is a time for us to come together to mourn with those who mourn, to commit ourselves to give whatever aid and support we can, and to be in solidarity with our Haitian sisters and brothers in our own diocesan family and our communities, as well as the people of Haiti.
In addition to your own personal prayers, you may find these helpful:
A litany by Fr. William “Chip” Stokes;
A prayer by Bishop Jeffery Rowthorn;
A prayer from Washington National Cathedral;
And here’s a prayer written by Archdeacon Fritz Bazin:
A Prayer for Haiti
Almighty Father, God of mercies and giver of comfort, deal graciously, we pray, with the people of Haiti in the midst of the great suffering caused by the catastrophic earthquake. May they cast all their care on you and know the consolation of your love.
Give us the courage, zeal, wisdom and patience to assist them, not only in these first days and weeks of urgent need, but as they continue to need the care and partnership of all their sisters and brothers around the world in the long and difficult work of healing and rebuilding.
Grant eternal life to those who have died, healing to the injured and strength to all the survivors, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen
The Ven. Dr. J. Fritz Bazin
Archdeacon for Immigration and Social Concerns
Diocese of Southeast Florida