A generous gesture in the Diocese of Rochester enabled 10 New Orleans teens to attend the National Catholic Youth Conference.
Nearly $6,000 was raised, with approximately $5,000 coming from pleas made during NCYC parent-pilgrim meetings prior to the conference. Other monies came out of profits from the sale of souvenir pilgrim hats, shirts and buttons.
The fundraiser supported youths from St. Andrew the Apostle Parish in New Orleans, who would otherwise not have been able to attend the NCYC due to devastation brought on by Hurricane Katrina. The match between Rochester and St. Andrew the Apostle was coordinated through the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry.
“From what I hear, (the parish) lost darn near everything. These folks are really down,” said Sue Versluys, Rochester’s diocesan interim coordinator of youth ministry. She said the local effort was an example of “seeing the face of Christ in the disaster,” adding that people were eager to help because they knew their contributions would directly support the beneficiaries.