Thank you, Dr. Dickès

Source: District of Asia

Dr. Jean-Pierre Dickes was an obstetrician-gynecologist, pathologist and author.  He was also the president of the Association Catholique des InfirmièresetMédecins (ACIMPS) which is a large body of professionals interested in finding the answer to the moral questions concerning healthcare and the sanctity of human life. 

He published books and wrote for newspapers and magazines and had radio programs where he spoke about moral questions.

In the year 2004, he was invited by Rev. Fr. Daniel Couture, then District Superior of the SSPX District of Asia, to speak at the Priests’ Meeting about the moral aspects of medical and surgical procedures.  Fr. Couture invited him also to visit the major Mass centers in the Philippines to share his medical expertise.  Conferences were organized by doctors and nurses connected with the traditional chapels for medical students and health care professionals in big universities in General Santos, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, and Iloilo, and among the physician members of the Academy of Catholic Traditional Biomedical Ethics in Manila, then headed by Dr. Lee Verzosa.

The meeting of Dr. Dickes with Dr. Woo who organized the conference in the medical college of Xavier University inspired Dr. Woo to request Fr. Daniel Couture to return and offer traditional Mass in Cagayan de Oro.  Thus began the SSPX Mass center there.

After his speaking tour, Dr. Dickes was invited to take part in a medical mission in a mountain village in Rizal Province. This experience touched him deeply.

In the year 2006, upon learning that an American nurse was coming to the Philippines to conduct a hygiene mission dedicated to Rosa Mystica for poor children, Dr. Dickes volunteered to come along.  From a very small hygiene camp for 50 children, the Rosa Mystica Mission snowballed into a medical mission that served around 2,500 patients in 5 days from August 12-16, 2007.  The last patient who received medical attention in that mission is now a religious Brother of the SSPX.

The misery of thousands of poor patients tugged at his heart and he wanted to do more to relieve their misery.  He decided to raise funds and return.

Year after year since then, the Rosa Mystica Health Mission continued to bring aid to the sick poor across the country, bringing the charity of Christ to souls that have never yet seen the light of Baptism or have strayed far from the fold, hoping to lead them to God’s bosom through the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. 

As patients slowly responded to grace and asked for the Sacraments, Dr. Dickes offered to build a church dedicated to Rosa Mystica and Saint Joseph.  For Dr. Dickes, no sacrifice was too big to bring God’s charity to the suffering poor.  Volunteers from different continents were inspired by his generosity. 

Within 13 years, the mission has served around 117,000 patients: 

Year 2007 in General Santos City – 2,150; year 2008 in Sarangani Province – 2,524; year 2009 in Rizal Province – 3,220; year 2010 in Rizal Province, Southern Leyte, Tacloban andZambales – 5,778; year 2011 in Quezon City – 2,500; year 2012 in Quezon City –3,624; year 2013 in Iloilo – 2,440; year 2014 in Tacloban – 3,184; year 2015 in Tacloban – 3,932; year 2016 in General Santos City – 3,104; year 2017 in Sarangani Province – 3,036; year 2018 in South Cotabato and Sarangani Province – 3,378; year 2019 in South Cotabato – 2,949; in 2020 in various mountain villages in Misamis Oriental – 1,289.  In various places (Jolo, Sulu, Tawi-tawi, Sarangani Province, Samar, etc, through MEDCAPS with Philippine Army – 36,268.  Various missions with other civic partners (Davao del Sur, Camiguin Island, etc – 22,442.  Disaster relief operations (Typhoon Ondoy in Metro Manila, Typhoon Sendong in Cagayan de Oro, Typhoon Pablo in Davao Oriental, Typhoon Yolanda in Tacloban and Southern Leyte, Typhoon Ruby in Samar and Leyte) – 10,384;  Livelihood Training in General Santos City – 288; Clinic at OLVC basement – 80; Clinic at GSC Office – 500; Clinics through Dr. Cagape in Sarangani Province – 3,000; Through various health centers in Rizal Province and Butuan – 1,000.

While on his sickbed, Dr. Dickes continued to encourage and console the mission workers in the field. 

We thank God for the living example of fortitude and charity set before our eyes.  May we have the grace to keep toiling in the mission field until we meet him again in our home above.

Rest in peace, Dr. Jean-Pierre Dickes.