Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

More Sad News From Haiti

I have been going to Haiti almost yearly since 1997. We were hosted by an elderly Haitian woman named Se Tata who opened her home and heart to us each week we were there. We worked in the church of Pastor Bienne Lamerique who allowed us to care for his parishioners these past years and was a kind and godly man. He would take time out of his incredibly busy schedule to translate for me in the clinic we set up in his church.

Here's a note from Tom Kardish, who has accompanied me on missions to Shiloh Baptist and to St.Simon and Jude Church these past two years.

Se Tata's house (Juanita Joseph, age 80 approx) completely collapsed and she is presumed dead. Her house may have been the most solid structure I was in while in Haiti so I'm surprised. We would be awakened before dawn each morning by her singing hymns at the top of her lungs. We would then shuffle-off down stairs to her morning psalms and singing. She called us all "my son" "my daughter". She made a good life in Port-Au-Prince despite being longtime a widow. On tuesdays we would be sent out of Port au Prince for our "day off" as she could not look after us - she would go off preaching the gospel out in the town or country side. Her son is a pastor in Boston.

Pastor Bienne L'Amerique, the baptist pastor whose church and school we did mission work at prior to our efforts at St Jude, has been killed. Pastor Bienne was a great young pastor and was the head baptist "bishop" in Port -Au- Prince. He operated three schools I believe.I carry his card in my wallet. He always drove me to the airport and after trying to get me to drive, his final words would be "pray for the people of Haiti." He also correctly said once that "I have Haiti in my heart". One of his schools was close to St Jude. Thanks to Terry Macbride, he met Fr. Andrew a few times during the past year. Thankfully his wife and children survived though his church was torn in two.
I'll keep you apprised as I hear.


Eternal rest grant to them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them.

May they rest in peace.



Anonymous Barb said...

In the midst of all this, so sorry to hear of your very personal loss of those you knew and cared for in Haiti. I read your post(s) hours ago, but just couldn't even bring myself to comment. My prayers are with you and PD.

January 13, 2010 11:37 PM  
Blogger tajinc said...

Tom, my name is La'Tonia McDonald, Se Tata is mu aunt is there any way to be sure she was in the house. Please let me know or even if you can give me a call collect. If you could respond to me via my email at My family is very very worried and this blog is the only news we have received.

January 14, 2010 12:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I pray Se Tata is alive. She is such a dear saint. I just checked with my source, and the information is the same, with no update. Our church sends yearly medical & church plant missions, and my Pastor preaches regularly in Pastor Bienne's church.
I had the pleasure of dining with him and his family at their home, and remember them fondly. Blessings

January 14, 2010 12:57 PM  
Blogger tajinc said...

Thanks so much and when I find out anything else I will update you as well.

January 14, 2010 4:02 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

Thanks Latonia,
our prayers are with you, please keep us informed. God bless

January 14, 2010 4:13 PM  
Anonymous Owen said...

I'm so sorry Russ.

January 14, 2010 9:09 PM  
Blogger Bekah said...

The destruction and ongoing suffering in Haiti is just heart-wrenching. I offer sincere prayers that your friend will be found alive, but I also pray that all those who have passed are now singing psalms and glory to God in Heaven with the Saints. We are praying for all the people of Haiti daily in our family morning prayers. My five year old son is especially concerned to remember the Haitians every time we pray.

January 15, 2010 10:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Apparently Pastor Bienne was killed when his home collapsed. So sad. He was a wonderful man.

January 17, 2010 8:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From a letter to our church.

"We did learn this week that a Haitian pastor put together a team and went to Se Tata's home and were able to locate her body. She and Pastor Bienne both have been buried with care and dignity."

I am truly sorry for your loss.

January 25, 2010 9:04 AM  

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