Ninety per cent of the Archdiocese of New Orlean's churches, schools and parishes were badly damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Yesterday Archbishop Alfred C Hughes of New Orleans appealed to Catholics the world over for prayers and material aid to support efforts by the archdiocese to meet the many needs victims. The archdiocese has established a fund to provide short term aid of basic necessities and long term projects for rebuilding ruined church buildings. The Archbishop said over 90% of places of worship, church run schools, parishes and other buildings are seriously damaged and no longer able to serve the diocese's 150,000 Catholic families. According to the National Catholic Register 30% of the people in the archdiocese of New Orleans are Catholic. Before the hurricane hit there were 140 parishes, 90 chapels for adoration (49 in town and 41 in the area) three Catholic universities; 14 high schools; 15 middle schools; 38 institutes of Brothers and 25 of Sisters. Archbishop Hughes calls on Catholics all over the world to join a "community prayer network for the victims of Hurricane Katrina with the slogan "One church - one community". He says the goal is "20 million prayer intentions". Caritas offices in north America have launched an "operation home" asking families to find temporary accommodation for the homeless. Already 60 diocesan Caritas offices have had offers of accommodation in good condition. The Bishops of Mexico have asked for a special collection in aid of hurricane Katrina victims on Sunday 25 September. Caritas Mexico has opened a bank account for donations to help the victims and Cardinal Noberto Rivera, Archbishop of Mexico City said he is sure Mexicans will give generously. Source: Fides
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