In April Fr. Rick Frechette was seriously injured in a motorcycle accident in Haiti as he returned from burial duties for the destitute dead. Two other members of his team were also injured. He is receiving excellent care and is recuperating from his injuries. We are including parts of his narrative describing his ordeal to remind us of the importance of perspective and affirming that the blessing and right for quality medical care is a human right deserved by everyone.
Today marks two weeks since the motorcycle accident on the way from Titanyin to Tabarre (after burial of the destitute dead), left myself and two other members of our team wounded.
Look at the richness of the generosity toward myself when I was in urgent need (a priest suddenly a penitent, a doctor suddenly a patient, and a strong leader suddenly a fallen team member).
I was airlifted from Haiti to Miami… I was give first class treatment and a private room … My CT scans and case were reviewed even by a trauma physician of the White House … This was all just frosting on the cake, the cake being all the efforts on every side to organize the saving of my life (from hemorrhagic shock).
St Paul was knocked off his horse, and remained blind until he could see in a new way, that was useful to the building of God's reign. I was knocked off this motorcycle, and began right away re-seeing many things which had become somewhat dormant over these years, yet were part of my original calling to try to be useful to the building of God's reign.
Dormant yet reawakened.
As I was cared for so graciously, I often pictured the other two injured team members, Emmanuel and Lenz.
I pictured them in their shanty shacks, lying on the floor, far from water and toilettes and help if they needed it.
I called them often to see how I could send medicines, some clothes, have them reevaluated.
My own great care made me aware of their limited care, and eager to try to fill in the gaps that i could.
I missed for them what I had for myself. I am glad I had it.
I miss it for them. I am more committed than ever to try to even the field of blessing, to make it reach the poorest of people.
My own great care made me picture the children at St Damien's Hospital, the adults at St Luke Hospital, the old people in Cite Soleil whose physician I am, the sick poor I care for at Sans Fils and St Joseph.
I would see them in my hours and hours of sleep. Wishing for all of them the same courtesy, the same first class treatment, the same kind greetings and promise of prayer, that I have known.
It is fully it's own powerful medicine, I have been held up by love and its healing force. I am more committed to spreading this powerful medicine as well, to the people far from this blessing.
This time of convalescence is a great satisfaction to me: it is the proof that I have set up strong and independent leaders and teams in Haiti, who know what to do and don't need me to be there.
If I had been more seriously injured in the accident, or killed, there is no part of the institutional work of NPFS or St Luc programs that are dependent on my person.
For sure I bring a certain richness to the work in Haiti, as does each person.
For sure I have my own work to do in Haiti:
I am eager to get back to this, my work. Thank you for your help, your concern, your friendship, your prayers. Be sure of mine for you. Fr Rick Frechette