Celebration of welcome

Local clergy celebrate a Mass of welcome for Haitian migrant workers at Columbia Farms in Hammonton on June 30.
Photo by Alan M. Dumoff

On June 30, a group of local Catholics held an annual welcoming event to offer spiritual support and host a feast for workers who migrate temporarily to Hammonton each year to labor in Columbia’s blueberry farms.

This feast has been a tradition for seven years.

Father Yvans Jazon of Notre Dame de la Mer Parish, Wildwood, and local clergy concelebrated a Mass in Creole for all the Haitian farmers.

The farm workers choir sang traditional Haitian hymns. People from throughout the Diocese of Camden and beyond came for the celebration.

Members of Hand-to-Hand Mission to Haiti, people from social justice teams around the diocese, and the Atlantic County Haitian Community joined together to prepare and serve a banquet of traditional Haitian and local food and drinks to show appreciation to all the farm workers for their many hours of hard labor.