Haitian Orthodox Mission news
- God bless you all!
First, I must apologize for a "false step" -- this is being sent to the same
list used for the first mailing, plus a few others who have asked to be
added. Please allow me to address some technical stuff first (actual news
found further down). I had intended to send out this news simply via a mass
mailing feature in my regular e-mail handler, but quickly realized this was
impractical (notably, I wouldn't be able to do anything during my 3 weeks in
California, leaving tomorrow after liturgy). So, the mailing is actually
going to be handled by a newsgroup on the Mission webserver hosted by
Orthodox Internet Services. What does this mean? YOU need to sign on in
order to receive future bulletins:
Anyone can subscribe himself to the list by going to:
It is also possible to subscribe by sending an email to
news-request@... with the word 'subscribe' as the
I will leave it to Fr. Mark's discretion whether or not to sign on the
entire Synod list, as he suggested earlier. If he chooses to do so, some of
you will of course initially receive duplicate copies if you have signed on
You may also find some information (more as I can get to it) on the Mission
Please forgive any duplications in the distribution of this letter -- I'm
having to prepare it in far too much haste.
CURRENT NEWS: I spoke this morning with Fr. Gregoire by phone (attempts
yesterday to reach any of our people with phones failed -- for the most part
there is no power, so cellphones are rapidly becoming useless except for
those with access to generator or solar power systems), and received
yesterday e-mail communications from Nicolas at Cyvadier. So far as we
know, all of our people are OK, but the situation is very severe and
continues to deteriorate. No movement outside one's immediate neighborhood
is safe; travel is all but impossible in any event. Tap-taps have stopped
running, all commercial air service within and to and from Haiti has ceased.
Food and fuel are both becoming extremely scarce, though it seems that many
street markets continue to function pretty much as usual. Haiti is so much
an ongoing crisis that people are already in crisis mode, and so deal
creatively with conditions which would stop most of us cold.
There is, however, no communication possible between Port-au-Prince and
Cap-Haitien, so no one knows the situation of our people there. I tried
yesterday and today to reach Fr. Jean's sister Marie, who is the "eldress"
at St. Nicolas, by phone, but without success.
Under these conditions, our faithful are very much isolated from one
another, except insofar as they can make contact by telephone -- and in
prayer. Only at St. Augustine's could it be said that in some measure life
continues more or less normally -- the area around Jacmel is by nature much
more peaceful than most of the country.
Fervent prayers that the Lord may look kindly upon these, amongst the
poorest of His children, and take away this terrible trial, are much in
More as I'm able to find out more.
Please remember me, and the kind Orthodox ophthalmologists who plan to
restore my vision to something like normal, in your prayers.