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Monday, June 6, 2011

Bringing the Gospel to the Whole of Man in Haiti

Serving those in deepest apostolic need means that with one hand we give them meat to eat today, and with the other hand show them how to raise their own livestock for tomorrow.  How can we say that we are preaching the Gospel to the people if we don't care for their whole person?  This is the perspective of Fr Glenn Meaux, SOLT at the Haiti mission, who founded the mission in 1989.  In the video he talks about the life of the mission in Haiti:

Kobonal Haiti with Father Glenn Meaux
SOLT Haiti Mission in Kobonal, Haiti, near Hinche.

"They have a dignity that can never be touched, never be touched, and it's getting to show them that they have a dignity that comes from God, helping them to observe and be aware of that.  No matter what anybody does, it cannot be effected.  They are made in the image and likeness of God, and when they truly take hold of it, they can come to maturity, and see that they are called to holiness...

"When we came there was nothing.  Today, behind the gates to the mission, we've got 18 classrooms, 1200 children in our school system.  We have an education system second to none.  Education was crucial, because the children didn't have access....The parents had to send their livestock, horses, and goats just to send their children to school.

"The destitute would be dying, if it weren't for the program that we have.  They would not be alive if we didn't give them food.  The present need is immediate, and then for the long term we try to integrate them into the life of the communities they live in so that they can support themselves.

"We give them a loan to allow them to start their own business. Once a month they bring back 10% of their loan, and after 10 months it is usually paid in full.  The return rate is about 99%.  Then we increase the value of the load the following year.

"One of our projects is animal husbandry.  That is a small business that we start the folks in.  It is extremely productive.  In a matter of 6 months they may have 6 piglets and they end up selling them for funds and buying more.  In the past three years we have given around 300 pigs, maybe 600 goats."

The area of Kobonol, Haiti has been so deeply transformed, by this mission, that the bishops of Haiti once told Fr Flanagan, the SOLT Founder, "If there were 4 more missions like this, it would heal haiti."

If you would like to support this mission please contact:

Karen Griffin, Donations for Haiti