Funerals

Every morning in the chapel, Fr. Rick says mass.  There is always a dead body (or two, or four, or five) on the floor, draped in hand-sewn cloths.  Babies wrapped in plastic and tape with their names written in sharpie along the masking tape are nestled in with the adults to fit on the stretchers that are carried into the back of the waiting truck after the ceremony. Sometimes the families of the dead come, sometimes they don't. If they do, often there is a rented casket and people in borrowed suits.  Yesterday there were a dozen "mourners" who proceeded to take obnoxious photos and forget to turn off their loud cell phone rings.  Today there was a young mother who unwrapped her toddler to say goodbye.

I'm a little tired of funerals, but many of the volunteers go day after day for months or years. It's nice to know that someone is mourning these people if the family doesn't come.  In the last 8 days, I think over 25 bodies have been blessed by a mixed group of volunteers, Haitians, and ordained nuns & priests who kneel on the tile floor in a circle and extend our hands over the bodies. 

I'm a little tired of funerals.  I'm not tired of Haiti, though.  This trip has been wonderful in many ways and too short.  We are planning some sort of celebration this evening & I leave tomorrow.  Hoping for no delays and excited for Christmas (especially to bring some Haitian goodies to my family). Excited for happy family gatherings and no more funerals.  But I'll be thinking of Haiti and those who die here every day, as always.

Out of the 6 people in the Father Wasson center, 3 of us survived. Dr. Castro wanted a picture since we're all here in Haiti together right now.


Comments