From the blog “The Beginning of Something Wonderful”, the story of the first year of the new Rehabilitation Dept. of the Episcopal University in Haiti, from the viewpoint of Donnel and Janet O’Flynn:
3 December 2016: International Day of the Handicapped
Our school, FSRL, together with two other organizations (AHL, Association des Handicaps de Léogâne, and OISUH, Lafleur’s organization) presented a festivity: a fête, on Saturday at the AHL clubhouse.
Many of the members of AHL have amputations, following the earthquake of 2010. There are people without vision, and with hemiplegia, and a couple of members who are deaf too.
I am tickled to say that I was asked to give a brief talk, and since the FSRL students REALLY LIKED IT, I am reproducing it here! (It was given in French, and Roosevelt translated it into Kreyol.)
“Good morning, and welcome to the Féte for the International Day of the Handicapped, which is celebrated in all the countries of the world!
Greetings to the president and members of AHL, the president and members of OISUH, the students of FSRL, and citizens of Léogâne.
I have a very important question today for all of us to consider.
The question is, “WHERE is the location of human dignity?”
Is it located in our right leg, for instance? Or in our left? Is it in one arm or the other? Is it perhaps in our eyes, or in our ears, or in our nervous system?
No? Then where?
It is located in our breath, in our very breathing, in our life itself, because we are made in the image of God, our Father.
Does God the Father have arms, legs, eyes, ears, and a nervous system? NO! But God does have breath. God’s breath is the Holy Spirit.
So we all have human dignity, as God’s creation and his gift of life.
Congratulations on the International Day of Handicapped Persons. Enjoy it, and may God bless you!”