.- Aid to the Church in Need’s Christmas-time grants will assist persecuted and suffering Christians in countries around the world.
The Catholic charity has reserved funds for 18 aid programs to help dioceses in Haiti recover from the devastating January earthquake.
Its largest grants include $106,000 to help 270 students for the priesthood whose seminary buildings were destroyed by the quake. Another $65,400 will help repair a religious sisters’ convent which temporarily houses more than 50 women after the congregation lost most of its houses in Port-au-Prince.
In Pakistan, the Catholic Church will receive five aid packages including a $32,700 grant for a boy’s hostel in Hyderabad Diocese and a multi-purpose community center in Yohannabad, outside Lahore.
A grant will also go to Christ the King Seminary in Karachi, where up to 40 theology students are preparing for the priesthood. The grant will be used for library books and new air conditioning units, the latter being especially vital in a hot region where electricity is rationed.
Aid to the Church in Need will also provide emergency aid packages for Christians fleeing persecution. Seminarians from the Syrian Catholic Archdiocese of Mosul, which has seen some of the country’s worst anti-Christian violence, will receive $26,200.
Other aid packages are planned to go to a seminary in Grodno, Belarus, a country presently suffering political tension. Grants to China will help provide religious formation and will provide Mass stipends to priests.
Other Mass stipends are provided for priests in Kenya, Tanzania, Peru, Argentina, Nicaragua, Chile, Uruguay, Bolivia and the Dominican Republic.