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2nd collections in Catholic Masses in Manila for Sendong victims

/ 10:40 PM December 19, 2011

MANILA, Philippines—To help raise funds for the victims of tropical storm “Sendong,’’ the archdiocese of Manila will have second collections in all its Masses, particularly during the Simbang gabi (dawn Masses) until Christmas Day, according to Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle.

Tagle also urged parishioners on Monday to keep their Christmas celebrations simple and focus on “the real meaning of Christmas,” saying the calamity that struck northern Mindanao and parts of the Visayas was an “eye-opener” for everyone.

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He said the tragedy offered a reason for the Catholic faithful to pause and reconsider how their lifestyles and the government’s policies affect the environment.

“We are calling for simple Christmas parties and celebrations, and (for people to) just focus on the real joy of Christmas, which is not about splendor, decorations or dancing,” Tagle said. “In this particular situation, Christmas is about Jesus uniting Himself with the poor and this event should help us bring back its real meaning.’’

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The archdiocese will collect monetary donations, while Caritas Manila, its social service arm, will receive donations in kind, the Church leader said.

Also in a Veritas interview, Iligan Bishop Elenito Galido said the victims needed food, blankets, slippers, underwear, medicines and mosquito nets.

“It is so saddening to listen to the victims because some lost their entire families, sometimes only one child was left. The stories are really depressing, but then I also saw their strength to really survive and face this with courage,” he said.

Galido said monetary donations for the Iligan diocese may be sent through its Banco de Oro account (312-008-7526).

Father Anton Pascual, executive director of Caritas Manila, said his group had already sent P200,000 to the diocese of Iligan as initial assistance.

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TAGS: archbishops, Archdiocese of Manila, Calamity, cash donations, casualties, Catholic Church, Charity, cyclones, Disasters, faith, Iligan diocese, Luis Antonio Tagle, Philippines, Religion, Sendong, Storms, Weather
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