It seems hard to believe that it’s been nearly a month since we returned from Haiti!
There were 15 people who made this trip: Steve & I, Bill & Diane Thelen, Jordyn Thelen & Tawni Klein from St. Joseph’s Parish and Jenna Thelen from St. Mary’s of Westphalia. We were also joined by Fr. Chris and members of St. Pius X of Grandville. And we were very grateful to have Tom Shannon of Fowler and his fiancé, Jenay Barry. Tom & Jenay took thousands of pictures and video to create mini-documentaries for the Apostolate for Family Consecration and EWTN. We are trusting God to bless their hard work and amazing talent to bring about more awareness for the work of Sr. Luvia and the poor in Haiti.
The blessings of our trip were many. We had a great group of people! It was especially wonderful to watch the young ladies interact with the children! We stayed at a convent run by Dominicans of the Presentation, a group of Columbian Sisters who took great care to provide for us! They are beautiful women who run not only the home for visitors, but a medical clinic and school in Haiti. The work they are doing is truly impressive!
One of our highlights was the visit to the new orphanage, which was purchased in the last couple of years through the generosity of our parishes and others who support Sr. Luvia. Many of the nearly forty girls living there were victims of both the earthquake in 2010 and the hurricane of 2012! They are so grateful for their new home and welcomed us with songs of thanksgiving and joy!
Sr. Luvia was happy to show us the schools and homes run by her Religious Sisters and Brothers and those used by her priests and seminarians. She also took time to make sure we experienced the beauty of Haiti, which is something we did not experience before, but truly appreciated.
Please know that Sr. Luvia is firm in her mission to educate the children; first in the Catholic faith, but also to provide a good education in all other subjects. She believes that this will be the only way to change the future of Haiti. Her next priority is to create a trade school. It has been her experience that many of her students graduate from high school, yet lack a trade that will allow them to get a job. Therefore they remain in poverty. Sr. Luvia’s next dream is to buy or build a site that will make the trade school possible.
All of us who made this trip would like to thank you for your prayers while we were gone. If you wish to see pictures from our trip we will be posting more in the near future.
In closing, we ask that you please pray for God’s guidance as St. Joseph’s Parish moves forward in our Haiti Outreach. If you ever have any questions, please feel free to contact us!
Steve & Sandy Wolniakowski