By Francesca Merlo
Haiti has been riddled with tension for months. There have been protests, at times violent, to urge ruling president Jovenel Moise – accused of corruption – to step down.
Twice as bad
The two weeks between the 9th and 25th of June saw the arrival of almost 50 new patients at a health centre in Martissant. 9 of these arrived in critical conditions. In the first three months of 2019 almost 240 patients arrived after having been shot. This is over double the number that arrived in 2018.
One year for the future
In the meantime, the Haitian Church have kicked-off an initiative: a year of prayer and adoration for the country, which will run until Pentecost 2020.
The Haitian Bishops’ Conference released a communiqué in which they further explain the meaning of this initiative. "The context of this year of prayer” reads the statement “is obviously the current situation of the Haitian people in Haiti. The misery has become so sharp and the insecurity so destabilizing that the tree of hope has been torn from the ground.”
The lack of hope "in a people has always been considered an absolute evil", continues the note. Alongside this, there is an "evil endemic corruption – gangrenous for the country".
Among these three evils, there is a relationship of cause and effect: "These three capital evils” say the Bishops, “will be at the center of our prayer throughout the year 2019-2020, but above all at the center of our worship. Hasn't the Lord always listened to the voice of His people crying for him? Aren't we his people, His flock?".
In providing some concrete indications on the initiative, the Bishops’ Conference of Haiti writes that: "To emphasize the truly ecclesial dimension of this prayer, the diocesan bishop will regularly organise a great celebration of worship in his diocese.”
Restoring to God
The note concludes saying that "Individually, then each Haitian, each prayer group will try, during moments of worship, to consecrate and restore to God the destiny of our country and our people.”