August 22, 2021

Dear parishioners and friends of our parish,

If you’ve seen the recent news coverage of the unspeakable suffering that the people of Haiti
are experiencing, and the extreme poverty that the people of Afghanistan are living through
these days under the Taliban rule, you’ll no doubt be as horrified as I am. These two countries
have become truly the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

Thousands of innocent children and families in those lands are facing an unimaginable
tragedy, combining the deadly dangers of natural disaster and war with the horrors of
poverty, Covid–19 pandemic and near starvation. Several priests who became my friends
during the time when I served as a volunteer in Haiti and the Dominican Republic twenty years
ago have kept me informed of these heart–breaking situations. I learned that so many people
there are so deeply wounded and malnourished that they don’t even have the energy to cry.
They remind me of what my own family went through in the aftermath of the Vietnam War.
It has been difficult for the Church in those two countries to respond to the overwhelming
needs of the people with their limited resources. In our own diocese and parish, there are
families with deep personal ties to Haiti and Afghanistan, and they are asking us to join them
in these worthy causes.

Many of you have already been generous with your weekly contributions. Your generosity
empowers the Church to preach the Gospel, make disciples, and support others in our
community who need help. We are grateful for the many ways in which you are answering
the cry of the needy. Another way that you could help the poor, especially in these
circumstances, is by dropping donations into the poor boxes located on the wall by the doors
of our church. You may want to consider the poor box as part of your weekly worship
experience. If you have unused coins or pocket change cluttering up your homes, please
donate them for this purpose as well. The St. Vincent de Paul Society of our parish will use
these extra funds to offer immediate assistance to the families in need.

We earnestly appreciate your ongoing support as valued members of our church family. Be
assured that your financial support, in every creative way, is making a difference in someone’s
life. Together, let us show the compassion of Christ and the courtesy of our great nation to the
brothers and sisters who are most in need right now.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Msgr. Cuong M. Pham