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November 29, 1991     The Message
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November 29, 1991

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29, 1991 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 3 Watching Haiti Sister Jennifer Miller searches, hopes for reliable information By MARY ANN HUGHES Message staff writer When Sister lennifer Miller O.S.B. Was in 'itaiti last De- uenaber as an observer for the i. hal presidential election, visit was "one of the most '[eShing and hopeful times" ,,aer life T he dominant image was iWave. Not a wave in a sta- in urn, hut a large wave com- s m asyou stood on the e, are. The people expressed .':musiasm, new life, hope -- are Unbelievabl o ressed an " Y PP tit . , . t. hey stud, we can rise "UOVe this Our G " "' We can exermse OUr Od-given rights to elect -,..,,President' And they uld, himself the $10,000 salary be- forced to negotiate for the re- cause he didn't want to deny turn of President Aristide. the Haitian people." Although there are conflict- Under President Aristide's ing reports coming out of command, human rights vie- Haiti, Sister Miller says she lations all but disappeared, has heard that all grocery she says, adding that "drug stores will be closed within traffic slowed to a trickle." the week because of the President Aristide was un- embargo. able to maintain his position She believes the people as Haitian leader; he was de- who will be affected the most posed in a military coup on by the embargo are those who September 30. live in the slums of the larger Today, Sister Miller Haitian cities. "I don't know watches and waits, trying to what will happen to those discover what is really hap- people who live on the edge pening inside Haiti. of malnutrition." She believes President Aristide is cur- that the Haitians who live in rently in France. His govern- the rural and mountainous ment has gone into hiding areas of the country "will be and the country is under the able to rough it." leadership of the military. As Sister Miller looks back Haiti is currently undergo- at President Aristide's tenure ing an embargo which is in office, she remembers him ,2"Or Dec. 16, 199(I, 67 per- sanctioned by the Organiza- as a le.ader who "heard the eF2! uf the Haitian voters lion of American Shlles. The cry of the. people. He was po- ,,.ct d Father Jean-Bertrand U.S.-hacked economic era- litically naive. He was a 'trlsl :to " ", " u,. as president. "'There barge, which began Nov. 5, l)riest, he was not in lhe po- i}s resurgence of hope in limits everything except hasic litical arena. ae Untry, SIsh,,r Mllh;r re- food and im;tlicine t'rom en- "lh; talks about the peoph,, his'tJ.l ors. "Itis first low; and tering the cuunh'y. Organizers of llaiti with dignity, as the l-la:,) rst concern was Ihe of the embargo are hoping the chihlren of(]od." man people. Hedenied leaders of the coup will be She re.nw, mlmrs the Haitian Illashington Catholic's 1991 fund drive goal, has been set at $550,000 By MARy ANN HUGHES goal is $55t).000. The 1,(191-93 budget for the Message staff writer The drive, which lakes three schools is $1,716,t)0(1. place every two years, raises which is an increase of 19 itller David Martin and money for the, three Washing- pt;i'cent. Nearly S1,300,000 .Ronald Zgunda Hi'o, the ton Catholic schools, includ- will be used for leacller and is of the 1991 ins tile, elenlentary school, staff salaries. Catholic School the, middle school and the, Of that total, $1,116,000 The, fund drive high school, comes from the Washington .. parishe, s of St. Mary's and St. AUTO TOPS , SEAT COVERS 80ATCOVERS Sinlon's, fronl special fuud STEREOSALES&INSTALLATIONS raising ew;nts, from registra- 254-3943 tion and tuition, and from the Catholic Education Endowment. PWY 50 EAST, BEHIND UPS CENTER Four-hundred-forty-nine EUGENE WELP, OWNER students are enrolled at the three Washington Catholic schools, according to Fonda ]oyce, Washington Catholic Dubois County Bank superintendent. The co-chairpersons Of the fund drive are pastors of the YOUR FIVE STAR SERVICE BANK two Washington parishes. Fa- people as "more emotional than we are and more in- volved. "The only time I found apa- thy in Haiti was when some- one was in the throes of mal- nutrition and could not be saved. Otherwise, apathy does not exist., "Haitians in church sing and pray and respond with their whole being. When they consider their government, they don't just sit back. There is an expression: Haitians show their favor or disfavor with their feet. "They feel very strongly about their nation, about their families and about their freedom." Sister Miller said that she has been informed by Theresa Patterson, who is with the Haitian Adopt-A-Parish Pro- gram, that American parishes should not attempt to send money to their adopted Haitian parishes. American planes are not landing in Haiti and "people cannot get to the airports because they do not have fuel." The Adopt-A-Parish pro- gram is encouraging parish- ioners to join Pax Christi's ef- forts to encourage the U.S. government to back President Aristide's return to power. Pax Christi USA is the na- tional Catholic Peace Movement. Haitian ambassador hopes for peaceful resolution By MARY ANN HUGHES Message staff writer Haitians have lost their human rights as a result of the Sept. 30 military coup, according to Fritz Longchamp, Haitian mnbassador to the United Nations. In a Nov. 20 telephone interview, Longchamp said "no rights are being respected lay the military government. Peo- ple are arrested for no reason." Longchamp said it has been estimated that over 2,000 Haitians have been killed since Haiti's president Father Jean-Bertrand Aristide was deposed in a military coup. Suspected supporters of Father Aristide, including several Haitian priests, have been arrested, Longchamp said. Supporters who have not been arrested, have gone into hiding. Longchamp said his countrymen are being terrorized by the Ton Ton Macoutes, a private police force estab- lished under the Duvalier regime. He described a news conference which was held earlier in November. "Students were demonstrating. The military arrested 200 of the stu- dents. Seven bodies were found the next day." Despite the internal strife, the lines of comnmnication continue to remain open and Longchamp says that he has heard that Haitians are beginning to feel the effects of an embargo, wh.ich is sanctioned by the Organization of American States. Under the terms of the embargo, only food and medical supplies are allowed into the country. Gasoline which will be used at medical facilities is the only fuel that has been allowed through the embargo. Although his president has been forced to leave Haiti and is now waiting in France for a resolution to the situa' lion, Longchamp says he is confident that the situation "can be solved in a peaceful manner." i i ther Martin is pastor of St. Siinon Church. He is cur- rently chairperson of the Washington Catholic Inter- parochial School Board. Fa- ther Zgunda is pastor of St. Mary's Church. " ID ' Funera,, re-Piannm00 Since 1940" : Joan Politz, wife of Vincennes superintendent, dies Nov. 21 Services for Joan Politz Bishop GeraldA. Gettelfinger were held Nov. 25 at Old presided attheMassofChris- Cathedral in Vincennes. tianBurial. Miller & Miller 42.1-9274 SHETLER MOVING & STORAGE 1253 Diamond Avenue Evansville, Indiana 423-5234 She was the wife of Dr. Art Politz, superintendent of the Vincennes schools and prin- cipal of Rivet High School in Vincennes. She died Nov. 21 fl'onl complications from n]ultil)le sclerosis. Survivors also include a son, Billy. L Lee Mortuary 101 North Meridian Street Washington, IN 254-3612