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News & Notes

News, updates and announcements.

December 5, 2019

Cercle matinale

Each morning school assembles. This wakes us before setting to work

“Chaque matin nous faisons un activité sur la cour de l’ecole qui s’appel cercle matinale. C’est tres intéressant pour éveiller les enfants avant de commencer à travailler. Ça se fait à 7h 40 pour 8h00” – Clibert Massillon

October 9, 2019

Turmoil in Haiti

Socio-political turmoil has come to a head in recent weeks. Street protests, barricades, burning tires, violent confrontations with some deaths have occurred. Many schools did not open on September 9th; St. Matthew’s alone in the region gallantly opened on time. Food for the Poor was unable to deliver supplies by September 16th. Fuel supplies have been disrupted. By the end of the month St Matthew’s too closed its doors under pressure to conform and want of the means to bring in the teachers. Our prayers are with all Haitians.

Stop press! St Matthew’s is open again

July 22, 2019

Summer camp thanks

Hearty thanks to the following area businesses, which donated supplies and snacks to the 2019 Summer Camp at St. Matthew’s School in Bayonnais, Haiti.  Please let them know how much Grace appreciates their generosity when you patronize these stores.

  • A to Z Science and Learning Store, Northampton
  • A.J. Hastings, Amherst
  • Acme Surplus, Northampton
  • Amherst Glass, Amherst
  • Atkins Farm Country Market, Amherst
  • Big Y, Hadley
  • Captain Candy, Northampton
  • Deals and Steals, Northampton
  • Home Depot, Hadley
  • Maple Farm Foods, Hadley
  • River Valley Market, Northampton
  • Stop and Shop, Hadley
  • Trader Joe’s, Hadley
  • Target, Hadley
  • Walmart, Hadley

November 15, 2018

Summer 2019, yes its coming

Summer camps in Bayonnais have been fun and rewarding for all participants,  for kids at St Matthew’s newly exposed to the arts and to counsellors from the USA. Let’s think ahead to next summer; could you be a counsellor ?

For members of the Grace community here’s a wonderful opportunityapply here.

For kreyòl-speaking students in the colleges of the Pioneer Valley come help your homelandapply here.

August 4, 2018


The annual summer camp occasions visitors to St Matthew’s and with those visitors, this year:

47 pairs of shoes, THANKS to TED’S BOOT SHOP of Northampton.  Shoes are required for school attendance.

a computer and printer THANKS to READER to READER of Amherst. Much needed to facilitate administration

and THANKS to Meg Holladay for lugging them there.

May 25, 2018

A Decade of Mission

It was in the spring of 2008 that Grace Church first engaged to support  the school of Saint Matthew’s in Bayonnais, Haiti. This spring,  2018, to mark the decade of partnership, the current priest, Rev. Joseph Tancrel Diegue paid a visit for a celebratory gathering of Grace and St. John’s.

We worshipped together, gave thanks together, and debated and dined together.

We recounted successes, recognized deficiencies and faced challenges of the future.

A gorgeous processional banner, newly crafted, is now in Haiti.

Thanks to:

Marion Rosenau & Lisa Lukas for the banner;  Nancy Lowry for images, and Meg Holladay for daylong unflagging interpretation kreyòl-English-kreyòl.

November 20, 2017

Value of Summer Camps

John Stifler, writer,educator, and Grace parishioner accompanied our two student counsellors to Bayonnais this summer, CLICK HERE for what he has to say.

August 13, 2017

Summer camp #4, much joy

Forty children from St. Matthew’s school have been singing, dancing, and drumming under the guidance of John Stifler from Grace Church, Veronica Israel and Fynta Sidime from Hampshire College and three Haitian teachers. Painted scenery, costumes, and performance of the stage production that capped the camp session entranced the residents of Bayonnais.  We are grateful for substantial grants from the Global Missions program of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts and from the Emily List Fund for Performing Arts Therapy, for underwriting  the costs of the camp. Delta Airlines waived certain baggage fees for some 300 pounds of art supplies and snacks which were donated by members of the Grace Church congregation and the following local businesses:

Acme Surplus
Atkins Farms Country Market
Big Y, Amherst
Deals & Steals
Maple Farm Foods
River Valley Market
Stop & Shop, Hadley
Target, Hadley
Trader Joe’s, Hadley

Thanks to you all!  Without you, the camp couldn’t have happened.

April 21, 2017

Your turn now!

Soirine in class copy


rehab goat shed

nearly ready for students

In 2016 the four new class rooms were opened to accommodate the rising enrollment in the upper grades.  The preschool and lower grades continued crowded in the old goat shed and the sanctuary of the church.  Happily, the generosity of our donors to the building fund now  allows refurbishment of the ‘Little Schoolhouse’

March 17, 2017


New classrooms,  new teachers, and as always as at any good school –   EXAMINATIONS !!   Here our students set to

2017 03 controle

Good luck kids!

March 13, 2017

Carnaval and more

The new classroom building is rapidly becoming a center for other activities.  in January Health4Haiti, extending their annual mission from Gonaives, held a health clinic.  Now the youth of St Basile celebrate Mardi Gras/Carnaval.  Thus a successful project binds and develops communities.

Join in here!    or    here!   (click on the purple text)

November 18, 2016

Summer 2017 opportunity!

Would you like to help the children of rural Haiti?  We will again be holding a two week summer camp in the arts at St Matthew’s, Bayonnais. Past camps have been a resounding success for the kids and for the counsellors –such as you. Download descriptions and applications for the two positions below

kreyol-appl-2017 for student with good kreyòl

grace-appl-2017 for an adventurous spirit willing to learn

October 1, 2016

Dedication of the new classrooms

Mirabile dictu the new classrooms, a-building since the spring, were inaugurated in conjunction with the celebration of the feast day of St. Matthew. What a wondrous community celebration!  Our thanks go especially to Fr Tancrel Diègue and school principal, Clibert Massillon, who have put in months of strenuous work to ensure that this project has been completed in time and on budget.

More details here:   grace-notes-report

January 2, 2016

Dine-in-for-Haiti IV …. ROOTS!!

Cheer your winter discontent.roots icon 2  Don’t dine 0ut, dine in!  Your savings go to support our partner,  l’école St. Matthieu.

The theme:  roots!  in menu and cuisines

Enjoy the produce of our good earth and kitchen traditions of our cooks.

Saturday, January 16th, 6 pm. Parish Hall, Grace Church.      $15 /adult, under 12s free.   Cash bar.




February 13, 2015

Chowder & Chocolate Challenge!

Friends of St Matthieu gathered to sample and cheer the culinary works of master cooks of chowder and chocolate in a mid-winter fundraiser.  Extraordinary, delicious offerings –recipes to follow.  Many thanks to the chefs, helpers, and clearers.  Our appetites sated and the the children of St Matthieu more securely supported. Thanks to all who joined the fun.

                       (Click on the images to enlarge)



Chowder chefs

Chowder Chefs

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