(CCCB – Ottawa)… The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) and the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (CCODP) are launching a joint campaign to raise emergency aid for Syrian refugees. The revenues collected will assist the extensive work in the Middle East by Catholic charities and development agencies, particularly Caritas Internationalis.
This special joint emergency campaign for Syria begins Sunday, 30 June 2013, and will continue throughout the summer. It will culminate with a day of prayer and fasting for the people of Syria and all the Middle East on Saturday, 14 September 2013, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. All donations to the special campaign should be sent to Development and Peace by 14 September.
In a letter addressed to the Catholics of Canada, the Most Reverend Richard Smith, Archbishop of Edmonton and President of the CCCB, together with Pope Francis and all the Bishops of Canada, invites Catholics to be in solidarity with the people of Syria in their many sufferings from war, violence and displacement. “As a community of faith, let us pray to God to bring justice, peace and healing to the region. Let each of us do what we can to provide assistance and aid to our suffering brothers and sisters in Syria and its neighbouring countries,” the CCCB President states in his letter.
A CCODP news release reports: “Since October 2012, Development and Peace has been taking action to help victims of the civil war in Syria, and providing support for its partners in the region, mainly Caritas Syria, Caritas Lebanon, Caritas Jordan, Caritas Turkey and Menapolis. These partners work with refugees from the conflict, both inside and outside camps, and with host families, by offering medical and psychological and social services, establishing mobile medical clinics, providing medical and other equipment, and distributing food and non-food items. The most vulnerable individuals receive priority assistance: pregnant women, children, and the wounded. Bombardments in densely populated zones have claimed and continue to claim numerous victims within civilian populations.”
Link to the CCCB President letter (PDF)
Link to the special Webpage on Syria of Development and Peace