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Prayers for Haiti

January 10, 2010

January 20, 2010

Reflection given by Rachel Costello, Student Involvement Coordinator, at the Dominican prayer service for Haiti.

“Lord of all creation, let your love and justice be planted, whisk like the wind, burn like fire, and flow like water through the hearts of all.”

These words we all prayed in solidarity today with those in Haiti are used for strength and courage, yet it is these elements that have torn this beautiful, yet impoverished, country apart.

Our hearts flood with questions. Why did this happen? Why are there children roaming the streets yearning to find their parents? Why are the hospitals, homes, and lives of so many now in a pile of concrete and dust? Why is the death toll so high and only continues to rise? Why is this already impoverished country forced to find alternatives to water and food? Why do we feel so powerless against this incredible force? Some of us may be learning about Haiti for the first time; thereby asking how this affects me. This was a horrific tragedy that happened thousands of miles away, how does this affect me? There is no “me”, there is only “we”. With Haiti suffering, the world suffers. We have those personally affected by this tragedy in our own communities. We have those personally affected in our own Dominican family—there is more of a “we” than we can even comprehend.

This prayer service has brought us all together for the most powerful and commanding reason—l ove. GOD IS LOVE. We are together today because of our outpouring love for the people of Haiti. We gather today for a search for hope; for us to see outside our lives at Dominican University or the United States of America and get a glimpse of our citizenship to the world. This tragedy is overwhelming and will take countless aid and resources to build again. Those are our brothers and sisters suffering in Haiti today and we come together today in solidarity for our global family who needs our help. What are we doing to help? Are we educating ourselves to become more aware of not only Haiti, but now the world around us? Are we thankful for the bounty we receive every day? Are we reaching deep inside our pockets and sacrificing something we may want so that others who have nothing may receive what they need? Are we using our own strengths and talents to express our love to the people of Haiti?

We recited in the Psalm reading, where is God? God’s steadfast love is in the urgent aid and resources being sent down to Haiti; God’s love is in the search and rescue teams as they work tirelessly to find those buried beneath the rubble. God is in the face of the woman who was rescued after 6 days of being under piles of concrete. God is in the face of the father who was trapped for over 50 hours with his two children, yet kept them all alive by sure will, a tootsie pop, and a piece of gum. God is in those Haitian citizens who gather together to sing in the streets for the glory of the Lord. God’s love is in each one of our hearts right now as we pray in solidarity and will continue through our actions, resources, and prayers.

We have seen the face of God in our neighbors and it is now time for us to be the face of God for our brothers and sisters in Haiti. As God’s love is steadfast, so must be our hope. The elements may have torn this country apart, but it is through God’s love that this country will be built anew.

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