In their Christmas message, the Bishops of Haiti urged the International Community to join forces to rebuild the Caribbean country, which has been devastated by intense political events as well as nature’s devastations, reported AND-CELAM, informative organ of the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM).
In their message, the Bishops asked: Should not this challenge the conscience of those that have responsibilities in the International Community and lead them to work tirelessly to help us heal the wound and promote respect for universal rights?” And, addressing to the local politicians, they asked: Are you not more worried than ever about this chaotic and catastrophic situation that gives no signs of slowing down?”
Beyond this question, CELAM’s informative system points out that, in face of all the events, which have occurred since the assassination of Jovenel Moïse up to the August 14 earthquake, can they be indifferent “given the tragic events of the last months? Hence, they take advantage of the occasion to launch a distress signal both to the world’s leaders as well as to the local functionaries elected to find a way out of the state of institutional and social distress, which threatens the country’s stability.
“On showing our solidarity with the grief of all those that are victims of abductions, violations, and violence of all sorts, we entrust to God’s mercy the souls of our innocent brothers and sisters who have fallen under the bullets of heavily armed groups,” they lamented.
Haiti has suffered a series of natural and manmade disasters in the past year.
On the second Sunday of Easter, while the universal Church celebrated Divine Mercy, the Catholic Church of Haiti, in particular the Society of Priests of Saint Jacques and the Archdiocese of Cap Haitien, lamented the kidnapping of 5 of their priests, two nuns and 3 relatives of Father Jean Arnel Joseph. The kidnapping took place on Sunday, April 11, in the town of Croix-des-Bouquets, near the capital Port-au-Prince. Father Stevenson Montinard, a priest of Saint Jacques, confirmed the news to Fides source and asked for prayers for the release of Fathers: Michel Briand (of French nationality), Jean Nicaisse Milien, Joël Thomas, Evens Joseph, and Jean-Hugues Baptiste ( priest of the Archdiocese of Cape Haitian, medical student) and Sister Agnès Bordeau, of the Congregation of Providence of Pommeraye, of French nationality, and of Sister Anne Marie Dorcelus, of the Congregation of the Little Sisters of the Child Jesus.
Haiti’s interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph, Jovenel Moïse was assassinated in an attack early on July 7, 2021, on his private residence, in which the First Lady also suffered a bullet wound. According to Europa Press Agency, hours later it was known that the Haitian President suffered 12 shots in different parts of his body, which was taken to a mortuary, accompanied by his daughter, Jomarly Moïse, who escaped the shooting.
On August 14, Haiti was struck by a 7.2 magnitude earthquake. More than 300 people were killed and more than 1800 injured, according to the Haitian government, which declared a state of emergency.