I had only known Sister Irene Claire Duval for 5 minutes when she told me about one of her biggest goals.
“I want to wipe out high blood pressure and anemia in Viloux!”
That’s when I knew this wasn’t going to be a typical interview.
Sr. Irene is a member of the Compassionate Franciscan Sisters of the Poor and runs a mission in the village of Viloux in northern Haiti. The mission provides meals to the needy, free education and meals for children and a medical clinic for local villagers. Recently, she blessed us by visiting our South Florida offices to give us an update about her work – an outreach we help support, thanks to our generous Catholic benefactors in the U.S.
I could see the love of Christ in Sr. Irene’s eyes as she told me about the villagers she serves day-in and day-out. She makes love the center of her ministry.
“To me, love is everything. With love you can make anything happen. Once you put yourself in love—there is hope.”
And hope is coming to Viloux through Sr. Irene! She excitedly told me about sick elderly folks who have been made well at the clinic, children who are thriving in their education, malnourished children who are now growing healthy and strong, and countless villagers who have come to know God’s great love through her example. Sr. Irene is not only wiping out physical anemia, but spiritual anemia as well.
She gives all the credit to God. Whenever she feels overwhelmed, Sr. Irene said, she remembers that the Lord is by her side by singing a short chorus, “You don’t have to be scared; I’m the one who calls you; I’m the one who saves you.”
I’m so thankful to have a job that allows me to meet dedicated servants of the Lord like Sr. Irene. She inspired me with her love, close relationship with God and faithfulness to serve the poor. Every day, she depends on the Lord to give her the strength she needs. She’s a living example of his love!