“Behold, I make all things new” (Rev 21:5). With this vision of St. John in the book of Revelation, we, members of the Mother Province of Perpetual Help of Central America and the Caribbean Province, rejoice on this day which marks the 291st anniversary of the foundation of our Congregation to thank the Lord who makes all things new, because as of today, the former Units of San Juan de Puerto Rico, Central America and Haiti officially disappear to make way for the creation of the new Province of Central America and the Caribbean, dedicated to the patronage of Mother of Perpetual Help, patroness of the Redemptorist missions and of the Republic of Haiti.
To mark this historic event, a solemn Mass was celebrated at Casa San Gerardo, Cotuí, Dominican Republic, presided over by Father Thierry Raphael, CSSR, Provincial Superior of this new unit, in the presence of several confreres of the Province, delegates of the General Government. During the celebration, Brother Larry Lujan, CSSR, delegate of Father General for America, read the decree of suppression of the units mentioned above and proceeded at the same time to the creation of the new Province of Mother of Perpetual Help, Central America and the Caribbean, with its headquarters in Santo Domingo, Avenida Independencia Km 8 ½, Calle Esther Rosario number 4. Brother Larry also read the decrees of approval of the new Provincial Superior and the Vicar Provincial of this new missionary unit.
In his homily, Father Gerardo Hernández, C.Ss.R, delegate of Father General Rogério Gomes, C.Ss.R, and member of the Province, urged all the confreres of this new unit to accompany the new government in its initiatives and projects and to work together to continue the missionary work of Alphonsus in this great region.
After his homily, Father Gerardo Hernández sat down in front of the altar. Before him and all the gathered, Fathers Thierry Raphaël and Felipe Santiago said the profession of faith and the oath of fidelity, required by the law at the taking of their office, respectively, as the new Provincial Superior and Vicar.
In his words of thanksgiving, the new Provincial said that he assumed this new responsibility with great humility and, at the same time, acknowledged the suffering that awaits him as Provincial. He invites the whole Province to live in forgiveness, unity and prayer to move forward. Taking up an affirmation of the Procurator General José Carlos, CSSR, Father Provincial invites all the local superiors to speak the same language as the Provincial. He asks the confreres of the Province to be patient with him because he is new.
To God, to our heavenly Mother, Mother of Perpetual Help, the saints, blessed, venerable and martyrs of our Congregation, we entrust the new Province of Central America and the Caribbean.
Fr. Renold Antoine, CSSR