The people of this small West Coast Locality of Senegal ardently hoped for the presence of the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis. The mission opened in 1995 by three pioneers, Yollande Bernier, Marie Blais and Nicole Fortier, has become the Kër Mère Saint-Louis School, a high-quality educational venture. Our thanks to Sr. Hellène Ndèye Sarr for her audacity in starting the project. Our gratitude to the people of Bentégnier for their wonderful hospitality and to all those who, over the past 25 years, have given their best and still do!
On January 26, 2020, the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis opened the festivities to mark their 75 years of presence in Haiti with great pomp. It was an occasion to give thanks, to honour our Canadian Sisters’ pioneering mission and pay tribute to them. The jubilee celebrations were to last a year, unfortunately some were compromised by the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the 10th anniversary of the Maison des enfants de Madame Molé, we remember the terrible earthquake and its impact on Port-au-Prince, and how Sister Solange Louiné responded to the tragedy with compassion and audacity. On March 4, 2020, Blessed Louise-Élisabeth’s Feast Day, a Thanksgiving Mass was celebrated in St. Anne’s Church, Camp-Perrin. It was a celebration of joy and hope for the children, the sisters in charge, their co-workers and all the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis in Haiti.
View a location on the map
“We are living the unprecedented experience of a pandemic. Would St. Louis, a champion of justice and peace have a project in mind for us today? St. Louis became king of France one month after St. Francis of Assisi’s death. He was a Franciscan Tertiary and the way he guided his people was marked by Francis of Assisi’s evangelical spirit. For Louis, the order of creation as established by God was a gift to be preserved at all cost”. He was grateful for this gift and engaged concretely in mundane tasks.
“What we know of St. Louis reminds us that, were he alive in 2020, he would make his, Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudato Sί, who quoted a wish expressed in the Earth Charter written in 2000.” “Let ours be a time remembered for the awakening of a new reverence for life, the firm resolve to achieve sustainability, the quickening of the struggle for justice and peace, and the joyful celebration of life.” (The Earth Charter, # 207. La Haye, 2000).
Charity was an integral part of St. Louis’ daily life. This charism challenges us to be co-responsible for the earth, Our Common Home.
Excerpts from Sister Alberte Piché’s message on the occasion of St. Louis’ Feast.