Haiti - 214th Vertières : Message from the Consul of Chicago
Message from the Consul Lesly Condé :
Dear friends of Haiti,
Friends of Haiti,
Frè m ak sè m yo,
I am delighted to be with you in the house of the Lord to commemorate the 214th anniversary of the famous Battle of Vertières, the one that brought honor to the entire black race. As always, I feel good in your company and I'm sure you all appreciate the great nature of the historic event that brings us together today. I send you, with pleasure, the fraternal greetings of the Consulate General of Haiti in Chicago.
As with every occasion, I must first thank the Church of Our Lady of Peace and the Haitian Catholic Mission of the Archdiocese of Chicago, whose precious collaboration allows us to celebrate our identity by thanking the Lord.
The Battle of Vertières, whose 214th birthday we are commemorating today, is still today one of our most powerful inspirations. It reminds us that human dignity is priceless. If the exploits of our ancestors have succeeded in inspiring the whole world in one way or another, they must, still more, guide us today and revive our confidence; especially when our troubles seem to multiply.
The pragmatism of our ancestors is one of the best lessons to be learned from this epic that the civilized world seeks to pass over in silence. In their ranks, there were men and women of all conditions. The struggle for freedom united them. They all had a single war cry 'Liberty or death'.
Freedom, they have indeed obtained it at the price of enormous sacrifices, and above all, thanks to their indomitable determination. Determination is another lesson to be learned from the victory of our ancestors in Vertières. Disarmed, barely armed and without military training, most of these slaves who became soldiers had chosen to face a certain death by confronting the soldiers of the powerful army of Napoleon.
Those who set themselves the task of falsifying our history still could not take away this glorious moment. Vertières means forever the victory of our ancestors and a stinging defeat of the slave system. That nobody can change it.
In closing, I thank again this church and the Catholic Mission. In addition, I urge you all to keep Haiti in your prayers because our country needs the wisdom of all its sons.
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