The Sask K of C Charitable Foundation is receiving donations from individuals, Councils and Parishes to assist victims of the devastating fires in Fort McMurray. These donations can be either sent to the Sask K of C Charitable Foundation or you can make the donation through our website at www.saskkofcfoundation.com.
All donors will be receiving a tax receipt for the amount of their donation from either the Sask K of C Charitable Foundation or directly from Canada Helps. All donations will be credited through to the Councils with respect to achieving the $7.00/member target.
At this point, the Federal Government has only agreed to match funds received by individuals through the Red Cross. We have been assured by the Red Cross that they will accept the donations we have raised and forward them to the government for matching. Only personal donations will qualify and we must have the list of donors to them before their donation deadline of May 30th, 2016. Once we provide the Red Cross with the names and funds from personal donations, we will have no authority over how these funds are paid out. All personal donations must be received in our office or paid through our website by THURSDAY, MAY 26th, 2016 if you want us to have them matched by the federal government.
We have also been in contact with the State Office in Alberta who have indicated that they will be working together with the District Deputy and the two Councils in Fort McMurray in determining where funding may be required for Church repairs, individual members etc. We have now been informed that 24 members of the Knights of Columbus in Fort McMurray have lost their homes. All funds received that do not qualify for government matching will be distributed through this avenue. It is the intent of the Sask K of C Charitable Foundation to continue to receive donations until June 15th, 2016.
Letter to The Most Rev. Paul Terrio, Bishop of St. Paul.
On behalf of all our brother Bishops in Canada, I wish to assure you and the faithful of the Diocese of St. Paul of our prayers and deep concern as so many of your people face the destruction of the fires around Fort McMurray and in surrounding areas.
As terrible as the wildfires and the damage they cause can be, each of us is equally moved by the overwhelming response of so many Canadians in helping those affected by this natural disaster – sending donations, giving shelter, offering food and comfort, fighting the fires, ensuring safety and security even at the risk of their own personal welfare. Their generosity and service are truly a blessing and an example for the rest of us!
Similarly, I have noted with profound admiration the number of Bishops who are inviting their parishes to remember in prayer and donations the many people in your region who have lost homes and livelihood, the tens of thousands forced to seek refuge elsewhere, and especially those who have died or been hurt. In turn, I am encouraging all dioceses to issue similar invitations to their people: to send individual donations to the Canadian Red Cross, or to take up collections which they can send directly to your diocese. Such contributions will assist the Catholic parishes and parishioners in Fort McMurray, as well as the Fort McMurray Ministerial Association, in their work and ministry for those struggling with the losses and damage of the wildfires.
Together with Pope Francis, confident that the Lord gives meaning to human sufferings, let us ask the Holy Spirit to enlighten our minds that we may find the right words capable of bringing comfort to others, and to open our hearts to the certainty that God is always present and never abandons us in times of trouble (Prayer vigil “To Dry the Tears”, Saint Peter’s Basilica, 5 May 2016).
Fraternally in Our Lord,
(Most Rev.) Douglas Crosby, OMI Bishop of Hamilton President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
If you would like to donate to the people of Fort Mac Murray Personal donations may be made to the Canadian Red Cross. In addition, dioceses / eparchies may want to organize parish collections for the Diocese of St. Paul. Bishop Terrio has confirmed that one-half of any contributions will be to assist the Catholic parishes and parishioners of Fort McMurray, while the other half will be forwarded to the Fort McMurray Ministerial Association for ecumenical assistance to those who have lost homes and jobs. These donations for the Diocese are to be forwarded to: Ms. Janice Atwal, Financial Officer, Diocese of St. Paul, 4410 – 51st Avenue, St. Paul, AB T0A 3A2