Tuesday, April 6, 2010

HAITI:Voodoo Ceremony Held to Mourn Earthquake Dead

SEVERAL HUNDRED voodoo practitioners have held a ceremony in Port-Au-Prince to honour the more than 200,000 plus Haitians who were killed in the January 12 earthquake.

In the first national voodoo ceremony held to mourn the dead, practitioners, who have rejected claims by an American evangelical pastor that voodoo caused the earthquake, dressed in white, shook decorated gourd rattles and sang praises to "Olorum Papa" (God the Father), news agency Reuters reported.

The supreme head of Haiti's voodoo religion, Max Beauvoir, led the ceremony, in which white robed women chanted, “Olorum Papa, hear our cry to you.”

Those present at the ceremony held a Booroum, a voodoo ritual which they believe sends the souls of the dead under water so they can be cleansed and return to life as better beings. They also said an incantation that encourages the souls of the dead.

"The people who died did not die, they went to another world, to live underwater" said Beauvoir,

Voodoo religion is recognised and protected by Haiti’s constitution.

One priest, Jean Claude Bazile, told Reuters: “It's voodoo that gives us freedom. Voodoo is not for making evil, but good."

He added "The other religions want to crush us, they think we're too strong. Everyone was hit by the earthquake, it was nature."

The event followed Haitian President Rene Préval’s appeal to the international community for US$11.5 billion to help rebuild his country.

Source: Voice-Online

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