Springfield Bishop Keeps Disaster Relief on the Radar

A recent article in the Berkshire Eagle covered remarks given by Springfield Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell about the continuing need to support the victims of Hurricane Irene.

McDonnell spoke at St. Joseph’s Parish Center on North Street where he acknowledged the difficulties for many families in Western Massachusetts in 2012 while praising the generosity and response of the community as a whole.

“The needs seem to be growing instead of declining,” said McDonnell.

Despite the demands, he said donors rose to the challenge and McDonnell called it the “miracle of the year that was so terrible otherwise.”

Specifically mentioned was the work of Higher Ground; Robin Lenz was present to talk about the effect donations from Catholic Charities have had on her efforts.

Representatives from Williamstown groups who assisted Irene victims were also on hand, saying the donations were beneficial to their efforts and came at a time when people were running out of options.

A total of 225 homes in a Williamstown mobile home park had to be abandoned when Irene hit last August, according to Robin Lenz of Higher Ground, a group formed in the wake of the storm. To date, only 66 homes have been cleared for occupancy and 153 will never be occupied again.

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