Monday, December 31, 2012

HAITI :: Holding St. Vincent's Close at Christmas

For so many of us, the holiday season—from Thanksgiving to New Years—holds much joy, laughter and hope. Our busy schedules often welcome:
  • Spending quality time with family and friends. 
  • Sharing bountiful feasts of every nature. 
  • Attending sacred religious services to nourish our souls.
  • Celebrating at endless parties and family get togethers. 
  • Giving gifts to those we love and care for.
  • Making resolutions to become better people in the coming months.
  • Anticipating a new and prosperous year.
  • Counting our seemingly endless blessings.
For others, the holidays bring something very different. It may be a time of sadness, loneliness and depression, especially for those with no home to return to. It may be a time of growling stomaches and empty hands for those who have been orphaned by circumstances beyond their control. It is these people—those who have forged a permanent place in our hearts—that we remembered this Christmas day.

In recent months you've read blog posts about the food crisis at St. Vincent's Center for Handicapped Children (Port-au-Prince, Haiti) and our combined efforts to provide a constant source of food for the kids. We are conducting an on-going food drive to ensure that the children are once again able to receive 3 meals a day. This Christmas, we wanted to make sure every person with the last name "Vincent" (the sir name for many of the permanent residents) and staff was reminded that they are each loved and cared about. 

On December 25, 2012, The Red Thread Promise set out a feast within the gates of St. Vincent's. With the hard work of Jonas, our all-around-handy-Haitian-friend, and his fiancé, Nathalie, the tables were set with traditional food of every sort, ensuring that every child would have something they like. (So much food was provided that there was a shortage of tables!) 

The Christmas feast
The first to enjoy the meal
Marie Line (background), Clauricianne, Judith and Genie
One of the many desserts
St. Vincent's staff members enjoying a meal
(foreground) Yolene waiting for her meal
(background from L to R) Zacharie, John Marc, Gary, Frenel, Evans, Elisme

As you look at the photos, no doubt you'll recognize many of the faces from Camp Jake as these are also our campers. Here are a few of the many thank you's from the kids:

Merry Christmas and happy new year 2013! 
Que dieu vous protege, Tom. (May God bless you)
~ Kenson

Thank you so much for dinner. 
~ Moise & Maill & Zacharie

Hi Tom, happy new year 2013 and thanks for diner. 
My God keeps you safe. 
~ Rosana

I send you a package full of joy, peace, love and health.
 Merry Christmas. Thanks for all, God bless you! 
~ Dieumene

10000 thanks for the diner and 11000 thanks for the cake. 
I'm happy you remember my birthday. 
~ Marieline

Marie Line and her birthday cake

Special thanks to Tom Landry II & Shawn Richard, Anne Mire, and Jackie & Mark Richard for their generous donations to make this special meal a reality. 

Donations for St. Vincent's food drive can still be made via PayPal (button on the right) or check (to the address below). Please indicate "SV Food" in the memo line. 
The Red Thread Promise
249 N Belfield Ave
Havertown, PA 19083

With your continued support, we plan to hold St. Vincent's close throughout 2013 and beyond.

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