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Parishes Begin Reporting Funds Collected for Haiti

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Responding to a request by Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, parishes in the Diocese of Raleigh held a special collection to aid relief efforts in Haiti, following the 7.0 earthquake that devastated the impoverished island nation. To date, $223,828 has been sent to the Diocese from 47 of its 96 parishes and missions. All the money collected is being sent to Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the official relief and development agency of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).

Among the parishes reporting are Sacred Heart Church in Pinehurst, $16,703; the UNC-Newman Center Church, $16,595; and St. Anthony of Padua in Southern Pines. St. Peter in Greenville raised $15,860 for CRS and collected another $8,949 for St. Damien of Molokai Hospital in Port-au-Prince, which provides long-term care to critically injured children. The hospital was founded and run by Father Rick Frechette, a Passionist Priest. St. Peter Church in Greenville is served by the Passionist Religious Order. (See story dated Jan. 29 on medical mission trip).

CRS, which has worked in Haiti since 1954, began providing food, shelter and medical care to survivors almost immediately after the earthquake struck. A Washington Post story, dated Jan. 29 on the difficulties of food distribution in Haiti, cited CRS’s successful endeavors:

Perhaps the most successful food operation in the capital took place this week on a once exclusive golf course in the hills east of the crippled downtown. Catholic Relief Services teamed with soldiers from the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division to distribute more than 200 tons of food, principally lentils and bulgar, to about 6,500 families.

You can read more about CRS’ relief work in Haiti and make a direct donation on the agency’s web site at www.crs.org.