The Sister Parish Ministry
In 1999, Prince of Peace and the Las Mercedes Parish in EI Progreso, Honduras became sister parishes. We are united in Catholic faith and love for one another. Many wonderful programs have grown from this relationship.
Honduras is a very poor country where the average weekly wage is $20,00, the average education level is that of a second grader (they drop out of school to work), and the unemployment rate is about 50%.
Because Prince of Peace saw the need for a nutrition center to help malnourished children, the Centro de Nutricion Las Mercedes Principe De Paz was formed. At the center, malnourished children are taken in and cared for night and day. Their mothers visit during the day and receive education on how to provide a healthier lifestyle for their families. Most children are able to return to their families, and the progress of the children is monitored once they return home. The nutrition center also works with community leaders to improve water quality and sanitation.
We realized that the children from the nutrition center could not always be cared for by their families, so this led to the need for Hogar Suyapa. Up to 50 children receive a loving home where they are cared for by an amazing staff. At the Hogar, they attend pre-school through 3rd grade and then attend public or private school. Many of the children at Hogar Suyapa have health problems. Some have Down's syndrome, heart defects, diabetes, fetal alcohol syndrome, depression and other mental illnesses. Several of the children have been abused before coming to the Hogar. Despite their challenges, the children blend to form a beautiful family. They are all very accepting of each other and their differences. The older children naturally look after the younger children. It's common to see the big kids carry a younger child and hold them in their laps. These are happy children full of love and big smiles. They know about Prince of Peace from an early age and the love and support that we provide.
Prince of Peace also supports programs within the barrios that provide kindergarten, hot lunches, and maternal health and nutrition training. These programs minister directly to those in need. Here, as well, the Prince of Peace name is known as a group that cares and helps.
If you would like to be a part of this exciting ministry please consider:
• Praying for this ministry
• Joining the Sister Parish committee (meetings are held on the 3rd Wednesday of every month at 7:00 p.m.)
• Visiting the sister parish (an amazing and life changing experience)
• Donating financially (by sending in change for School Masses)
• Supporting a child at Hogar Suyapa
For more information, please contact Mrs. Kri McGinnis.