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Diocese plans prayer service, accepts donations in reaction to shooting

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The last several days has proved that Buffalo truly is the City of Good Neighbors and this title extends well beyond the city’s limits. Western New Yorkers has responded to Saturday’s horrible shooting at Tops in so many Christ-like ways: through prayer, outreach, support, and care in kind and unselfish ways.

In response to this tragedy, so many have asked, “What can I do to help?” Our first response is prayer. 

All are invited to join us as our brothers and sisters of many faiths honor the lives of those taken suddenly, and perhaps provide some solace from this devastating incident that we will never forget. May God, in ways we cannot fully comprehend, console and comfort us, inspire our every effort to come together, and bring about the healing that we so desperately need here in our community and across our land. Faith compels us to reject the abject evil of racism and white supremacy, to say no to terror, and no to the intent to silence Black and Brown voices.

“Do Not Let Your Hearts be Troubled,” an interfaith prayer service will be held Monday, May 23, beginning at 5 p.m., at St. Martin de Porres Church, 555 Northampton St., Buffalo.

Secondly, Catholic Charities has a long history of serving and ministering to Buffalo’s East Side Community. Catholic Charities operates eight locations on the East Side, providing services including food, basic needs, counseling, WIC and workforce training. Parishes are asked to take up a second collection this weekend or next weekend. Pastors may want to take up the collection both weekends accommodating those who may be unprepared to donate. Proceeds from this collection should be made payable to “Catholic Charities:  East Side Collection” and forwarded to Catholic Charities, 741 Delaware Ave., Buffalo, NY 14209.

Also, individuals, parishes or groups who wish to purchase or collect needed items can support the diocesan affiliated ministries of the Response to Love Center, the Mother Teresa Home and/or St. Gianna Molla Pregnancy Outreach Centers.

Response to Love Center, 130 Kosciuszko St., Buffalo, NY 14212, is accepting the following items: canned goods, personal care items (deodorant, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shampoo, brushes, combs), toilet paper, paper towels, dish washing liquid, hand soap, Clorox bleach, gift cards to Target or Walmart. Contact Response to Love center at 716-894-7030.

The Mother Teresa Home, 208 Stanislaus St., Buffalo, NY 14212, is accepting the following items: baby wipes, diapers, paper towels, dish washing liquid, hand soap, laundry soap, gift cards to Target, Walmart or Aldi’s. Contact the Mother Teresa Home at 716-424-0217.

As we all move forward in the coming days and weeks, may we be united in our efforts to end racism and violence in all forms.

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