Press Release – For immediate release – Aid to the Church in Need Canada
Emergency Aid Campaign for India
Montreal, Wednesday, May 19, 2021 – Aid to the Church in Need Canada (ACN) is launching an appeal for urgent support for its project partners in India. “In a plea for help sent out last week, Sister Christin, a religious Sister from the Holy Cross congregation I was fortunate enough to meet on a trip in 2016, implores us to help. In a video, she says the health system has flat out collapsed,” says Marie-Claude Lalonde, national director of ACN.
Sister Christin lives at the Holy Cross Monastery in Calcutta and works with grassroots communities in her diocese. She says she has never experienced a situation like this in her life. “Desperate patients line up outside the emergency rooms of hospitals in major Indian cities, waiting for beds and oxygen. People are dying for lack of oxygen,” adding, “The fear and panic of our Indian people is palpable. “
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Indian Catholic Church has been working to support the most vulnerable affected by the health measures. Now it is being hit hard by this second wave. “Every day, news of the deaths of Sisters and priests who were collaborators, friends and lay animators of our base communities, pour in,” Sister Christin also tells us.
Watch the video of Sister Christin below:
A Situation as Critical as Ever
In addition to Covid-19 wreaking havoc on the population (278,719 deaths officially recorded as of May 18, 2021, and more than 4,000 deaths per day, on average, since the end of March), the western part of the country is now grappling with the devastation caused by cyclone Tauktae. It is the worst storm to hit this part of the subcontinent in 30 years.
For more information on the situation in India, we invite you to read an interview conducted by ACN with Archbishop Anil Couto, Catholic Archbishop of New Delhi, published by ACN Canada on May 7.