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Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate  United States Province

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Port au Prince Archbishop Killed in Earthquake – Thousands Dead in Destruction of Haitian Capital

January 13th, 2010

haiti-6Thousands are dead in the violent earthquake that devastated Haiti yesterday. News is difficult to come by, but it has been reported that the archbishop of Port-au-Prince, Monsignor Joseph Serge Miot, has died in the Haiti earthquake. His body was found by fellow missionaries in the ruins of the archdiocesan office.

Frs. Fred Charpentier and Adrien Difficile, communicating via email, have reported that the main building of the Provincial House in Port au Prince remains standing but an addition built about nine years ago has totally crumbled. An Oblate, who was inside when the tremors were first felt, managed to leave safely before the building collapsed. The Theology residence in Turgeau, close to Port-au-Prince, has also been totally destroyed.

Les Cayes, located on the southwest coast, also experienced the tremors but apparently suffered little or no destruction. That area on Wednesday had electricity but no phones and again, communication was by e-mail.

This statement on Haiti was released by the Oblate Central Administration:

While it is impossible to receive complete news of the Oblates living near the center of the January 12, 2010, earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, the General Councilor for Latin America, Fr. Loudeger Mazile, now meeting with the Central Government in Rome, was able to get some early reports.

Part of the Provincial House has been destroyed.

The scholasticate (theologate) has been destroyed. We have no information about the safety of the community there.

The study center for religious where the provincial, Fr. Gasner Joint teaches, was destroyed with the students inside the building. There is no report of the number of casualties there.

As further news becomes available, we will try to continue to inform the Congregation. Please pray for the people of Haiti and our Oblate community there.

For updated information on the Oblates in Haiti, please check the news blog on the OMIUSA website

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