In 2000, a request to explore what charitable outreach might be provided to Haiti came from the Grand Priory of France through OSMTH (Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem) and down to us from GPUSA. As there have long been historical and cultural ties between New Orleans and Haiti (Saint Domingue), this request was honored and during the Grand Council meetings in New Orleans in 2002, a formal fraternal relationship was established between Grand Priory France and the Priory of St. Bernard de Clairvaux with the exchange of flags and formal documents. The perennial Grand Prior of France, now the International Grand Commander V, OSMTH, Maj Chev. Marcel dePicciotto, MD, began years of regular attendance at our priory C&Is and remains a very special and beloved friend.
Priory main charitable outreach efforts and partners have included:
St. Louis Cathedral
American Red Cross (Turkish Earthquake relief.)
Trinity Christian Community
Good Samaritan Services of the Anglican Catholic Church
Financial Aid to Police or Fire personnel hurt or killed in the line of duty.
Archdiocese of Port Au Prince, Haiti
Stuffed Animals for Christmas from Canada and the Priory of St. Clair (Detroit) to St. Tammany Parish District Attorneys Office “Angels”
Ronald McDonald House
Second Harvest Food Bank
Association Hatienne Development Humaine (Haitian Association for Human Development)
Haitian Earthquake Relief (in kind and cash effort totaling $400,000+)
Hurricane Katrina Relief (with a $10,000 GPUSA contribution) aiding needy priory members with $22,000+ in direct financial aid. (Special thanks to the Priory of St. Patrick for its $5000 donation.)
Our current charitable partners are the Haitian Association for Human Development (AHDH) and Fairhaven Ministries, both of which network, collect and ship medical supplies, medicine, other necessary items and equipment throughout the world. The Priory of St. Bernard de Clairvaux also supports the Second Harvest Food Bank in New Orleans as well as the Ronald McDonald House in New Orleans, which serves families with children undergoing treatment at local medical facilities.
The AHDH under the leadership of its founder and priory member, Chev. Charles Rene, MD, KCTJ, has an established clinic in La Valee Jacmel, mounts as many as four medical missions per year and has conducted over 50 such missions to date.