For the first time on record, two category-4 hurricanes made landfall in the same year. Hurricane Harvey made landfall in August, followed by Hurricane Irma in September.
In response to the devastation, Catholic Charities organized special second collections at Masses in the Diocese of Raleigh. Thanks to the generous donations of the faithful, the diocese collected $613,432 from its parishes for hurricane relief.
The initial response of Catholic Charities focused on immediate needs such as food, water and shelter. As the relief effort continues, Catholic Charites assists people in resettlement and rebuilding their lives. According to Catholic Charities representative Dan Altenau, agencies adapt their efforts according to the specific needs of each disaster-impacted community.
There was no official appeal for relief efforts for Hurricane Maria, which first brought impact in late September. However, Catholic Charities received nearly $50,000 from 16 parishes to help those impacted in Puerto Rico.
In all, as of Nov. 17, the faithful of the Diocese of Raleigh contributed $662,847 in hurricane relief aid and. All money collected is sent to the USCCB Office of National Collections.
Staff and volunteers from the Diocese have also been deployed to assist in relief efforts.