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    Our dear departed

    François Dierickx

    François Dierickx

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    Francois DierickxFrançois Dierickx

    (1934-2020)

    Born in Vilvoorde (B) on September 22, 1934
    First vows on September 8, 1960
    Ordained Priest on August 1, 1965
    Missionary in Haiti (LAC) and Belgium
    Died in Sint-Pieters-Leeuw (B) on November 22, 2020 at the age of 86.

    After his secondary education with the Salesians and training as a butcher in Kortrijk, François (Sus) entered the CICM Novitiate in 1959. He loved community recreation and telling jokes.

    At the Provincial House in Haiti, during the aperitifs, the atmos­phere was warm with discussions about our community life, our way of evangelizing, and what is essen­tial between being missionaries and religious. Some got angry, while others were silent when they were not told that they were right. But when we arrived at the table, the discussions were over. Sus took part in these discussions with con­viction. For him, to move forward, to realize himself, everyone's con­tributions were essential.

    Sus organized meetings with peo­ple and sent committed lay people to all kinds of sessions at the diocesan formation center. He sent 17 farmers for a six-month training course to be­come animators. This made it possible to create groups of farmers throughout the parish.

    Sus was firmly convinced that the Good News of Jesus of Nazareth had to be lived here and now and that all human beings were equal. The Haitian authorities, especially the army, were indeed oppressors that Sus could not stand. That is why he regularly clashed with the civil and military officers. However, he himself had been an army chaplain in Germany for three years and had the rank of major. And so, to impress them, Sus had hung a beautiful picture of himself in a military uniform in the parlor of the rectory. The local army chief of the village, being only a captain, had to salute his superior. Sus found this comical and pleasing.

    Sus wished everyone be a blessing to each other and a sign of peace and joy. Jesus Christ, our brother and friend, take our brother Sus in your arms. ■

    Jean Hostens


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