What a week this has been! THANK YOU to the excellent energetic CREDO staff who hosted a successful conference for the Diocesan clergy and laity at one of Haiti’s most beautiful resorts, Club Indigo. People arrived in Montrouis from all over Haiti on Sunday evening to a delicious dinner followed by a Eucharist offered in French by CREDO staffer, Lee Crawford. The mood was festive as we all looked forward to the days of nourishment, reflection, and empowerment that lay ahead.
In one memorable session, Diocesan leaders were divided into groups based on region and were given 45 minutes to construct ‘something we were proud of’ made of pipe cleaners and straws. Our group of Port au Prince-dwellers decided to build a lovely earthquake-resistant, environmentally friendly guesthouse. By the time our wobbly construct was finished we had survived several successful confrontations between us and realized had we taken time at the beginning to make a good plan, our final product would have been better. We also found that with eight of us in the group, we had many opinions to work with. This was a strength, but also meant that our construction process took longer.
I found the experience paralleled the seemingly modest pace of rebuilding here after the earthquake. Not only the many affected structures of the Diocese of Haiti, but of the country as a whole. The challenge is seizing the opportunity to rebuild everything BETTER and to do that successfully, many factors must be considered. Thus, the process is long, but I feel that taking the extra time on the front end will pay off in the end. .. as long as leadership can encourage focus.
Speaking of leadership, most of you who will read this know that the results of the Nov. 28th elections in Haiti were announced on Tuesday evening. The subsequent unrest all over the country colored the remaining day of the conference. In President of CREDO, William Craddock’s, closing remarks, he asked several poignant questions which encouraged us to think of the years ahead in flexible terms. He asked, ‘Is the future of Haiti burning tires and blockades in the streets? Is it profound loss of life after natural disasters?’ It was a great chance for all present to remember, ‘It doesn’t have to be this way!’
The conference in general freed us to imagine what can be.
This photo is of the clergy, lay leadership, and CREDO staff.... What a fine bunch of people !!!!