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National Shrine Hosts Gathering For Haiti Earthquake Anniversary

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In Northeast Washington, many people from across the region are gathering at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception to mark the one year anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti.

The shrine nearly filled to capacity with members from the local American-Haitian community, average citizens and government officials.

Although many recall the devastation one year ago which took the lives of more than a quarter million Haitians, most came to remember those who survived the quake, and still live in Haiti.

Right now, Refugees International estimates approximately 1.3 million Haitians are still without permanent shelter, and living in displacement camps on that island nation.

Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, will be the chief celebrant for this "Mass of Remembrance," which features prayers and music in the native Creole language of Haiti. The archdiocese of Washington has had a long and close relationship with the Haitian people through 14 parishes which are affiliated with the archdiocese.

The mass is organized by the local Haitian-American community and by the Haitian ambassador, Raymond Joseph, who is also attended the event.

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