After prayer at 5:30 am and Mass at 6 am, we had breakfast as usual. The community washes the dishes, wipes them dry and puts away all. This is the usual routine. This is done also for dinner @ 1:30 pm and supper @ 5:30 pm. Everything flowed so easily and peacefully.
I enjoyed the scheduled events the past 5 days, especially the camaraderie and joy of living of the sisters. Once inside this facility in Tabarre, the ones in Marie Madeleine and City Soleil were all like oases–clean, tranquil, well maintained, and safe.
Today I was picked up by the “Little Brother of St. Therese of the Little Flower” (PFST). Brother Lozama drove me to their home in Rivière Froide.
Brother Phred Bernadin, social science and religious education teacher talked to me about his years of preparation to become a member of this religious order (native to Haiti). These people possess the charism needed to live and work with the rural people on their land, teaching them better methods of farming and land management, while paying special attention to improve water and soil preservation.
He also gave me a tour of the school buildings. There are approximately 800 students from preschool to 12th year in Notre Dame de Fatima. The school is run by 3 brothers and 22 lay people. The tuition is 400 Haitian dollars but 25 to 30 percent of students are unable to pay.
Frè Bernadin also gave me a little history of the congregation: it was founded by Brother Louis Charles on December 14, 1948 with the sisters. Then he started the men’s group on February 11, 1960. Their motto is “The Little Way”, doing “little things with great love.” — Confience, amour, abandon.
I shared the pastoral work I did under the guidance and leadership of Bishop Guy Sansaricq at Sacred Heart Parish in Cambria Heights and in the Haitian Apostolate since 1975. I showed him the Baptism Booklet I had prepared as well as the Kolej Pastoral book I help the Bishop publish. Both are written in Kreyòl.
Frè Denis sat with us for a few minutes explaining his role as superior managing the brothers’ house and assignment, and the house’s financial matters. Frè Wilfred Francois showed me the animals he is breeding—pigs, chickens, goats.