News & Events


Haiti and the Little Sisters of St. Therese

by Sister Eileen Coleman, IHM

The recent assassination of President Jovenel Moise has only added to Haiti’s turbulence. While his presidency has been marked with corruption and political instability, protesters demanding his ouster have shut down much of the economy. Under his leadership the country continued to spiral into extreme poverty, criminal gangs have driven thousands of people from their homes and killed hundreds of Haitians, kidnappings have increased dramatically and the country has yet to begin vaccinating its 11 million people. Bruno Maes, Haiti’s representative to the UN’s children agency, last month compared the gang situation to guerrilla warfare, “with thousands of women and children caught in the crossfire.” Moise’s assassination has only created more political instability as two of Moise’s political appointees have vied for leadership of the country and representatives of Haiti’s Human Rights Defense Network have asked that a candidate be chosen who is not connected to the former President. After discussion with ambassadors from other countries, including the US, Prime Minister Ariel Henry, a neurosurgeon, was sworn in to replace interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph.

With this as their reality, the Little Sisters continue to minister to the poorest of the poor in Haiti, as the challenges continue to mount and at times seem insurmountable. Sister Denise laments that the sisters are still trying to recover from the earthquake of 2010! Efforts to rebuild the many structures that were destroyed or damaged have been thwarted or abandoned by current and more pressing needs: additional security for their convents after one of their sisters was kidnapped, an ambulance to take their sisters for medical care because gangs and protestors block roads so that only emergency vehicles can pass, availability of funds to buy food and supplies (if they can get through road blocks) for the sisters both at the motherhouse and infirmary and for the sisters in their rural missions who can’t afford to buy it themselves.

Sister Denise shares her struggles and challenges with us because as she writes: “We always thank God for putting such nuns in our way. We thank them for their fidelity and their solidarity since many years. We don’t have words to express to you all our gratitude. God will reward all your efforts for us. Please continue to pray for us. Our need is very big.”

Let us continue to be in solidarity with them through our prayers and financial support. Donations for the Little Sisters of St. Therese in Haiti are accepted in the IHM Development Office. Note "Haiti."