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St. Mary Magdalene

IMG-20150719-WA0000 IMG-20150719-WA0001 IMG-20150719-WA0002 IMG-20150719-WA0003 IMG-20150719-WA0004July 22 is the feast of St. Mary Magdalene in the church calendar and is/was celebrated at the chapel of Our Lady of the Rosary known as Cour Cadicon on July 22. However, because Cour Cadicon is a chapel and difficult to get to on a regular basis by Fr. Nova, it was celebrated this past Sunday. St. Mary Magdalene was the first to discover the empty tomb and experience the Risen Christ.

Feast day celebrations are always, in Haiti, a festive event and combined with the festivities of St. Mary Magdalene, Fr. Nova had the privilege of celebrating the Sacrament of Baptism for 40 people, young and old and later in the day, celebrating the First Holy Communion of 30 people. I am always amazed at the approach to the Sacraments in Haiti. Despite the poverty everyone from participants in the Sacraments to family members go all out to present themselves to the Lord in their best attire, as evidenced by the photos. Lest you think they have the ability to afford such amenities, let me tell you most of the dresses and outfits for the boys are rented or borrowed. The parents clothing are probably the same the wear to Mass every Sunday. You see, in Haiti, the have one “special” set of clothing set aside and only used for Sunday Mass or very special occasions. They most certainly don’t have a closet full of clothes to choose from, as a matter of fact they don’t have closets in the modest homes.

I would like you to pay special attention to the church. It is only partially built, basically a stick frame, a roof, fortunately with a metal covering, and side slats, basically enough to provide some protection from the elements and you can’t see them but sawed tree trunks for seats. To decrease the exposure to the elements for this special event, tarps were erected. Remember, in Haiti this time of year the temps are in the 90s with 75+ humidity. I can attest to the fact that I would much rather deal with AZ heat and low humidity.

I know I end almost every blog with a plea for donations but when I see these conditions and think of the blessings we have. I can’t help it. Take a few minutes to contemplate your church, think about the beauty and comfort we are surrounded in and then think about how we take this for granted and maybe are lack luster in our faith. Then take a second look at the photos and think about the love of faith, despite their poverty and simplicity of their worship space the people of Haiti have.

Don’t you think they deserve the same as us? Don’t you think we have the ability, each of us to provide the support they need to make their life at least a little closer to the life we are blessed with?

Jesus tells us, the poor will be with us always. There is a reason for this and that reason is because we are called by Him to share our blessings with others. The poor are there for our benefit and salvation.

If you agree on this Feast Day of St. Mary Magdalene, send a contribution. There is so much to do and so little dollars – please – help.