Stillwater News Press


January 20, 2010

Stillwater parish raises $57,000 for Haiti

STILLWATER, Okla. — A local Catholic parish drew in $57,000 in special collections last weekend for Haiti disaster relief.

Father Stuart Crevcoure of St. John University Parish said $50,000 came from one donor.

The special collection for Catholic Relief Services was taken at the parish's Saturday mass and three Sunday masses. The collection brought in more money than any other special collection in  parish history, Crevcoure said.

Other local organizations are beginning to count the funds they've raised for earthquake relief efforts in Haiti.

Stillwater's First United Methodist Church raised about $10,000 during special collections at four services Sunday, said church administrative assistant Julie Nowak. Pastor Stan Warfield said $10,000 was his personal goal for the church.

Vicki Hennington, executive director of the north-central Oklahoma chapter of the Red Cross, said almost $4,000 has been donated to the Stillwater Red Cross office for aid to Haiti.

Hennington said donations can be dropped off at the Red Cross office at 114 W. Eighth Ave., at the Oklahoma State student union, or at the Stillwater Radio office at  408 N. Thomas Ave. Cell phone users can also text "Haiti" to 90999 to donate $10 to the Red Cross.

The Red Cross cannot take clothes or other items at this time, Hennington said.

Derrek Belase, pastor at Highland Park Methodist Church, said the congregation gave $1,500 at a special collection Sunday for Haiti. He anticipates the church will raise another $500.

The mood was somber at Highland Park's Sunday service, as church-goers mourned the loss of Samuel Dixon Jr. and Clinton Rabb, two missionaries with the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Both men were killed in Haiti after injuries sustained in the earthquake. Dixon was the executive director of the Methodist Committee on Relief at the time of his death. 

 "We're mourning the loss of great people who work on our behalf," Belase said.

An assessment team from The Salvation Army arrived in Haiti Friday with limited supplies, according to a release. More than 5,000 volunteers gathered in El Dorado, Kansas over the weekend and packed one million meals ready for delivery to Haiti.

Joe Day, pastor at Southside Baptist Church, said his congregation is waiting on further instruction from the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. Sam Porter, director of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, is currently in Haiti to assess the best plan of action for the BGCO, Day said.

The Salvation Army has raised about $2,000 locally, said Sgt. Robert Daniels, corps administrator of the Stillwater Salvation Army.

For more on local and national disaster relief, see Wednesday's NewsPress.

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