I can report some assistance already conveyed. Father Lerow on behalf of the Missionary Society of Saint Paul has sent a substantial amount of cash by Haiti through Mrs. Bien-Aime, who is travelling by land through the Dominican Republic. Mrs. Bien-Aime is in a group to help provide security. We hope she will reach Port-au-Prince today or tomorrow. This cash should assist in the most pressing needs of the two dozen orphans immediately under Father Bien-Aime's care in Port-au-Prince and perhaps also the needs of the wider circle of people he helps there.
I am happy to report that an old friend of mine, who is a reporter for one of the major U.S. networks, was able this weekend to deliver to Father Bien-Aime a substantial amount of water, food, medicine, and cash. Again, this helps with the immediate problem.
We are not yet able to determine accurately the amount of damage at our mountain parishes in Mannonville and Tapio. At the moment it seems likely that the orphans will be taken further to the north of Haiti, which is relatively free of earthquake damage. A friend of Father Bien-Aime's there has kindly offered space for the children for the time being.
Due to the generosity of our donors, we should be able to replace the orphanage truck, which was destroyed in the collapse of the orphanage. The orphanage itself was rented, so its loss does not pose a long-term problem to us. Apart from immediate care for the orphans and replacing the truck, the funds now in hand will be used to rent an alternative orphanage, help rebuilding in Tapio and Mannonville as needed, and permit Father Bien-Aime to assist others in need. The orphanage has always been a center for a wider circle of help, including a feeding program, assistance with education for children formerly in the orphanage, and medical care for those older children and others in need who do not live in the orphanage itself. Much of this work is on hold of necessity until the children are safely provided for, but I know Father Bien-Aime will resume such work as soon as possible.
Again, I am very grateful to all who are helping us help. When I have significant further news, I will report it.
Yours in Christ,
(The Most Reverend) Mark Haverland
Archbishop & Metropolitan