‘People were anxious to give’
The Archdiocese of New Orleans, which includes St. Charles Parish, held an Archdiocese-wide second collection to raise funds for Haiti the week after a catastrophic earthquake destroyed much of the country’s capital, Port-au-Prince.
“The people of New Orleans and the regions around it are acutely aware of what it means to have your community virtually destroyed and every bit of normalcy taken away from you,” said Sarah McDonald, director of communications for the Archdiocese. “It was very important for us in a very particular way to respond quickly. It’s important to the Archdiocese to be of as much assistance as we can to those in Haiti and to the Haitians living here in the New Orleans area.”
So far, the Archdiocese has collected about $600,000, with more than $38,000 coming from St. Charles Parish.
St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Destrehan collected more than $21,000 on one Sunday, according to Ronald Rodrigue.
“People were anxious to give,” Rodrigue said. “It’s probably the greatest collection we’ve ever had.”
Holy Family Catholic Church in Luling collected more than $15,000.
A representative for Holy Family said that the parishioners had a lot of compassion and empathy for the people of Haiti.
St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Luling collected about $2,000.
Theresa Muller, administrative assistant at the church, said that parishioners were very anxious to give.
“Every week since the collection, we’ve been getting more money,” Muller said.
The money will go towards Catholic Relief Services, the international arm of the Catholic church.
“They work all over the world and had people on the ground in Haiti prior to the earthquake,” McDonald said. “They have stepped up their relief efforts. They’re doing everything they can possibly do.”
Donations will help support a major residential camp for displaced people, distributing water and food and manning two hospital sites and six satellite clinics.
Catholic Relief has also started a $30-million program to provide clean-up and rebuilding work to displaced Haitians.
To donate to Catholic Relief Services, contact your local Catholic church or contact the relief services directly by visiting www.crs.org or calling 1-877-Help-CRS (1-877-435-7277).
Local schools also held fundraisers for Haiti, including Boutte Christian Academy.
The school offered a dress-down day for a $1 charge per student.
The students dressed in Saints gear and held a rally for the team on the Friday before the Super Bowl.
Each student released a black and gold balloo
n at the event and prayed for those in Haiti who have been affected by the earthquake.