In Haiti, festivities and voodoo undertakers help mourners bid farewell to Reuters


© Reuters sisters Friedlin Alfred and Karin Alfred are shown the light for the plane-shaped coffin they chose for their recently deceased mother Anira Jules, April 17, 2021, at a morgue in St. Mark’s, Haiti. Comfortably Hamlet


By Valerie Baeriswyl and Andre Paultre

GRAND-BERA, Haiti (Reuters) – Anira Jules, who has lived in a small village in rural Haiti all her life, has never set foot on a plane. But for his final voyage, he was sent in a glittering white, flat-shaped coffin with wing-tails and an illuminated porthole.

The mourners fell into a trance-like state or wept at a church funeral at the Grande-Bera in Artibonite in central Haiti. A procession of brass bands followed with a huge procession that carried plane-coffins to the cemetery.

The night before the funeral, about 200 people played dominoes and cards, drank ginger tea and claire – a Haitian villain, a spirit like Ram – and ate local food under a tarpaulin outside the family home as a DJ preached the gospel.

“When I was little, my mother used to tell me that her funeral should be done well,” said Friedlin Alfred, Jules’ youngest daughter. My older sister was in charge and she loved to perform.

A festive place with a show of dramatic passion and a fanfare band and a great funeral কিছু these are some of Haiti’s death ceremonies, like her wedding -idUKKBN2681KH, the country’s poverty Often extraordinary social events.

Ceremonies are considered important to guarantee safe entry into the world – crematoriums and organ donations are rare because the dead are still considered in need of their bodies – but a way to identify one’s social status.

The Afro-Caribbean religion dudh tih from voodoo is often mixed with Christians. Voodoo Undertaker – also called Croc-Mort (French: ‘Dead-Beater’) – Write down what families need to keep in the coffin to ensure a safe journey and not turn the dead into zombies.

Alfred said his family did not have a funeral until three weeks after his mother’s death because they needed time to receive guests and repaint his house to create a new tomb.

They rented a bus to transport guests from outside the city, set up a tarpaulin in the courtyard, and set up tables and chairs to wake up, usually a matter of a festival in Haiti where mourners can choose to dance, sing or even joke. Dawn

People gathered there for several days after the funeral.

Elvida Desruisex, 28, who recently buried her godfather’s father, said the tradition of turning a funeral into a multi-day social event had a meaning for the spirit of the bereaved family.

“The family is sad but it’s good to have such an environment so we can laugh a little,” he said. “Guests sometimes help us work from home and chat with us to help us get through the worst.”

At the cemetery where his godfather’s father was buried, a mourner fired into the air – a sign of respect.

Fight against evil spirits

Haitians easily arrange the corpses of their loved ones for burial which probably reflects their acquaintance with death.

Caribbean countries are plagued by disease, malnutrition and natural disasters, while health care is poor, resulting in the highest infant and maternal mortality rates in the Western Hemisphere. The average life expectancy is only 64 years.

In families where the voodoo tradition is followed – which is estimated to be more than half that of Haiti’s 11 million people – Croc-Mort helps prepare corpses for burial.

The 32-year-old sociologist Faguenson Harmozin, who recently buried his aunt, said he had a stone in his hand in his coffin to help him fight an evil spirit that could harm him.

“You can also include a knife or knives,” he told Croke-Mort, “a doctor who gives you a prescription.”

Hermosin said that in rural areas where there were no morgues, croc-mort would also learn how to decorate the body with leaves. Offers for voodoo spirits – fried corn, yams, soda, sweets – are usually placed on a table.

Harmozin said there was a lot of social pressure to provide an impressive dispatch. And when there was solidarity, when people came to cook or contribute food, it didn’t come close to cutting costs.

Alfred said his funeral alone was the equivalent of পরিবারের 2,212 for his family, while waking up cost another 3,000 3,000,000 ্য a fortune in a country where two-thirds of the population lives on less than ২ 2 a day.

Expatriates will often be helped by relatives, video calls to zoom in on the funeral, but other times people will go into debt to pay the costs.

Alfred said he fought to pay the rent and feed his family after paying so much money. But for her mother it was all worth it.

“The last time she spoke to me,” she said, “she hugged me in her arms and told me she wouldn’t stop loving me.”

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