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The Connection

Yesterday at 9:42 A.M., Pastor Fatera Dorestan was pronounced dead. The death continues to be investigated by the Florida Highway Patrol as the circumstances surrounding the accident which caused the untimely death are still unknown.

Pastor Fatera Dorestan was not just a minister, but the Assistant Pastor at First Haitian Baptist Church in Naples, FL.

My father, Pastor Pierre Merone is the head minister at the church. The two had worked as partners in ministry since the mid-1990s. My father's style of preaching and Fatera's were the perfect complement. But, they shared more than preaching, the two were best friends.

Last year, on Tuesday March 18, around 11 A.M., my best friend also passed away. The results of the autopsy were initially inconclusive and the state investigated the circumstances surrounding his death. My friend, Ereck Plancher died while practicing football. He was taken too soon.

My father and I both lost our best friends within the span of 1 year 4 months and a day. When Ereck died, I wept uncontrollably. My parents and siblings were the first people I spoke with about the incident. I couldn't call my parents. I couldn't physically bring myself to call them because I was in shock and in tears. Yesterday, the same series of events happened to my father. He probably went through the exact same emotions that I went through that day.

He didn't call me. I called him and tried to be a comfort to him. On the phone, I could tell my father had been crying for a great deal of time. His voice was shaky and his usually confident voice did not come through the receiving end of the call. Besides our similarity in countenance we also have a similarity in demeanor and neither my dad nor I outwardly express our emotions. We try as best as possible to be stoic in the face of increasing uncertainty.

I don't know why God spared our lives and took those of the people closest to us. God has a plan for both of our lives. He is not finished with us yet. When my best friend died there was a while where I just couldn't worship like I used to and I hope for the church's sake that my father can be strong. Somewhere in the scripture it mentions that God never gives us more than we can handle. Obviously, this devastating tragedy has long-standing repercussions; however, since both Ereck and Pastor Dorestan were believers and devout, we can rest assured that we will see our best friends again.

We can also be confident that now we can really understand each other. We are both hurting and will never fully recover from the shock of sudden and unexpected loss, but with our mutual support and leaning on one another I am sure we'll emerge stronger than ever.

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