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21/11/2013: COMMUNITY TO CELEBRATE SPECIAL MASS FOR THOSE AFFECTED BY TYPHOON HAIYAN

PRESS RELEASE
WDC-114-2013
21 November 2013

COMMUNITY TO CELEBRATE SPECIAL MASS FOR THOSE AFFECTED BY TYPHOON HAIYAN

WASHINGTON, DC—Not even the strongest storm can destroy the faith of the Filipino people.

Filipinos continue to seek solace in prayer during these difficult times, with reports of people in areas hardest hit by Typhoon Haiyan flocking to Sunday Mass. Filipinos abroad have also celebrated Masses for those affected by the typhoon.

The Philippine Embassy is inviting the Filipino community and general public to celebrate a special Mass for those who lost their lives, homes, and loved ones in Typhoon Haiyan. The Mass will be at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle (1725 Rhode Island Ave NW Washington, DC) on Monday, 25 November at 7 p.m.

His Eminence, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington will be the principal celebrant. Concelebrating the Mass will be Father Gary Villanueva of the Archdiocese of Washington and Father Leo Patalinghug of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The Mass hymns will sung by the Ateneo Alumni DC Choir.

The Catholic Church has been a visible presence in typhoon relief efforts. On November 11, Pope Francis tweeted, “We remember the Philippines, Vietnam, and the entire region hit by Typhoon Haiyan. Please be generous with prayers and concrete help.”

Prayers and assistance have been truly been generous.

The Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States, has been doing relief work on the ground and encouraging its members to support these efforts. The CRS country program in the Philippines was established in 1945, making it the organization’s oldest. It has provided long-term recovery assistance to thousands of Filipinos after natural disasters and continues to do so in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan.

The CRS aims to get help to 40,000 families in Leyte. Hundreds of displaced families are seeking shelter in buildings of the Archdiocese in Palo, Leyte. Additionally, the organization set  up a fund for typhoon relief efforts.

In the US, Catholic schools encouraged their students to donate to CRS efforts. Some parishes, including those in the Archdiocese of Washington, took up special second collections during Masses to contribute to the CRS relief fund.

Other Christian denominations and religious communities around the world have also offered prayers and expressed their support in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan. ###