Earthquake in Haiti
On August 14, a massive earthquake hit Haiti, resulting in major devastation to this impoverished nation. Meanwhile, tropical storms are exacerbating the situation. An estimated 1.2 million people, including 540,000 children, have been impacted with more than 1,900 deaths and thousands more injured, leaving local hospitals overwhelmed. Homes, schools, businesses and infrastructure that stood there a month ago simply no longer exist today. The Haitian people are now in dire need of medical care, shelter, food, water, clothing, and other supplies, as well as the materials to rebuild. The recovery process will remain for years.
The Washington metropolitan area is home to many thousands of Haitians. Many are our parishioners and many of our local parishes have close ties with Haiti through medical mission and parish twinning relationships.
In the wake of this humanitarian tragedy, Pope Francis said in his weekly audience, “As I raise my prayers to the Lord for the victims, I address a word of encouragement to the survivors, desiring that the international community will take a shared interest in them. May the solidarity of all alleviate the consequences of the tragedy.”
In response to the great need of the Haitian people during this awful time, parishes are asked to consider supporting relief efforts. Cardinal Gregory has also authorized the Pastoral Center Finance Office to send funds to assist with this recovery. The faithful of this Church of Washington responded with great generosity when a previous earthquake struck Haiti in 2010, just as the faithful have always been very generous to those in need and, in particular, when there have been natural disasters.
Please share with your community that Catholic Relief Services has a presence on the ground in Haiti and is assisting already. Should your parish and your parishioners wish to help provide immediate assistance for our Haitian sisters and brothers, please go to: https://support.crs.org/donate/haiti-earthquake. Your prayers and support can make a difference, and your assistance is greatly appreciated.