Haitians’ Gratitude Reminds us of the Meaning of Thanksgiving
by margaritamooney on November 25, 2010
It is appropriate Anne Barnard’s excellent coverage of Haitian Catholicism, entitled “Suffering, Haitians Turn to Charismatic Prayer,” should appear on the front page of the New York Times on Thanksgiving Day, for one of the strongest themes of Haitian Catholic Charismatic movement is gratitude. During the nearly two years of fieldwork I conducted in Haiti and the Haitian Catholic communities of Miami, Montreal and Paris, published as Faith Makes Us Live: Surviving and Thriving in the Haitian Diaspora (University of California Press 2009) I was struck by how Haitian Catholics, no matter how desperate their circumstances might seem like to outsiders, always expressed a profound sense of gratefulness for God’s gifts. During this holiday season, we can learn from Haitians how living in gratitude for the gifts we have received opens up our lives to be a gift to others.
To read my full comment on this article, visit the University of Notre Dame’s Contending Modernities blog.