PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (sentinel.ht) – The faithful were in the ten thousands on Thursday in the streets of Port-au-Prince for the veneration of the Virgin Mary under the title of the Immaculate Conception. The message of the celebration was trust, in each other and the authorities, in order to see a better Haiti.
Hymns and prayers were played from a carnival-like chariot as Catholics walked through the streets of the capital and expressed their faith. And after the show of their devotion in the streets they streamed into Sylvio Cator Stadium for a Holy Communion service presided over by Bishop Pierre-André Dumas.
Celebrations began at the site of the Cathedral of Port-au-Prince, still damaged by the 2010 earthquake. The believers then took to the streets, down Bishop Guilloux Avenue to Paved Street to Champ de Mars.
At Champ de Mars, with rosaries in hand, dressed in white t-shirts with images of the Virgin Mary in blue, they made an intercession of prayers for the country at the grounds where the National Palace, destroyed in the earthquake, once stood.
The parade continued down Capois Street to arrive at Sylvio Cator Stadium where the blessing of the Holy Communion was given.
“Good God, deliver us against evil forces. Free Haiti’s children,” implored the crowd which asked the Virgin Immaculate Conception to intercede on behalf of the country.
This year, the celebration of the Immaculate Conception was on the theme of “Konfyans Pitit Mwen, Koz Ou Nan Men’m Deja” (Trust My Children, Your Causes Are In My Hands Already). It is a theme that challenges us to trust God and Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ, Biship Dumas said.
In his homily on the occasion, Bishop Pierre-André Dumas told the faithful, “without the trust of one in the other, we can not have a viable society, nor life, Democratic, solid, nor sustainable state in Haiti.”
“In a country where the people do not trust the authorities, the country is called to a stand still.”
“In a society when we do not trust each other, we can not build. It is the enemy that makes us live in distrust, in suspicion, doubt. When a country lives in the dark, in the confusion, it’s because people do not build the city on trust.”
“So we will reap nothing but violence, destruction, and war… it is confidence that changes the course of history.”
His preaching was essentially based on trust which Mary is the source.