"Covid can't stop the power of the Holy Spirit"

"Covid can't stop the power of the Holy Spirit"

friar baptizing baby with parents

Fr. Colin King baptizes a newborn.

Over the years, you have been a crucial part in the success of our Jamaican missions, partnering with us to feed the hungry, educate impoverished children, bring the Sacraments and religious education to people in rural areas, and so much more.

friar in front of church

Fr. Colin King at St. Mary's Revival Church

Covid-19 was an unprecedented crisis that wreaked havoc in the lives of the Jamaican people we serve, as well in the entire world, but as Fr. Colin King says, “Covid can’t stop the power of the Holy Spirit.”

On a good day (pre-Covid), the Jamaican health system was often overwhelmed, with many people unable to access it, much less afford services. The pandemic caused tourism in Jamaica to come to a screeching halt, and the economy suffered, creating a ripple effect throughout the island. Medical mission trips and other mission trips to the area were cancelled, so help our friars were depending on for our medical clinic did not come. Over ten medical mission trips have been lost since the pandemic began.

The Jamaican people, many of whom were already struggling, began to suffer even more.

friar in classroom

Br. Raphael Ozoude in a classroom

Through your own personal pandemic struggles, you once again stepped up to support our friars’ quest to bring virtual learning to Jamaican children when it was seemingly impossible for teachers and families there. You helped ensure that the disruption in learning was minimal, and that kids and teachers were kept as safe as possible with social distancing options.

The medical clinic you helped make possible is now being used as one of the few Covid testing sites in our area, and it has been offered as a vaccination site! The clinic has been a blessing, and it has served people in ways we could have never imagined would be needed over a year ago.

As we continue to fight the lasting effects of the pandemic, more support is needed to bring telemedicine options to the people of Jamaica.

“Covid shifted our focus and altered some of our plans,” Fr. Colin explains. “We are now focusing on adding telemedicine and teledentistry options to the clinic for people whose needs aren’t urgent, but who still require a nurse, doctor, or dentist.”

friar preaching

Fr. Colin King, OFM

Telemedicine will be a saving grace for those who are unable to make a trip, or who can’t risk a Covid infection. It will also help with social distancing by keeping crowds at a minimum.

We also need storage solutions for the medical clinic, such as a 40-foot container, to effectively store and distribute the donated medical and dental supplies we receive. Freezers and generators are also needed to keep vaccines and medicines at recommended temperatures.

Your support for the medical clinic’s next phase is needed. Any help you can offer during these challenging times is lifesaving. We, and the Jamaican people, are incredibly grateful for all your prayers and support, which sustain us, save lives, and bring comfort and hope.

May God bless you,

Fr. John Bok, OFM

P.S. If you’d like to provide lifesaving help in the spirit of St. Anthony to the impoverished people at our Jamaican missions amidst the fallout from the Covid-19 crisis, please visit StAnthony.org/Jamaica.

Posted in: Missions