By Christie L. Chicoine
CS&T Staff Writer

PHILADELPHIA – A collection is being taken up at St. William Parish in Northeast Philadelphia for Pakistani Catholics of the Philadelphia Archdiocese whose families have been personally affected by the flood in Pakistan.

The parish has a large number of Pakistani Catholics, many of whose relatives continue to suffer from the flooding that began in late July and has left an estimated 1,500 people dead and at least 4 million Pakistanis homeless.{{more}}

The flood is reportedly the worst in the South Asian nation’s history. With a population of nearly 150 million people, Pakistan is the seventh most populous country in the world.

Father Dominic Isaac, coordinator of the Philadelphia Archdiocese’s Pakistani Apostolate, is scheduled to celebrate Mass for Pakistani flood victims and relief efforts at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 12, at St. William Church.

“We shall continue to pray for the Pakistani people,” Father Isaac said. “As a priest and diocesan coordinator, I have great sympathy for all these suffering people – their relatives here tell me their stories.”

Father Isaac, who is also a consultant of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services, is originally from Pakistan. He said his own family members were not directly affected by the flood.

Father Isaac asked that Catholics of the Philadelphia Archdiocese come to the aid of their Pakistani brothers and sisters.

“We should be generous to help them and to pray for them,” he said.

To contribute to the Pakistani Catholic Community Flood Relief Fund sponsored by St. William Parish of Philadelphia: send a check payable to St. William Parish marked “Pakistani Catholic Community Flood Relief Fund” and send by standard mail to St. William Parish, 6200 Rising Sun Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19111.

For more information, call the parish office at 215-745-1389.

Caritas Internationalis, the Vatican-based umbrella agency for national Catholic charities, launched an appeal in August, asking member agencies for $5.5 million to fund Catholic relief efforts in Pakistan throughout the next three months.

U.S. members of Caritas Internationalis are Catholic Relief Services (CRS), Catholic Charities USA and the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.

Headquartered in Baltimore, CRS is the official overseas relief and development agency of the USCCB.

For more information about Catholic Relief Services’ aid to Pakistan, including how to donate to CRS online, visit or call 1-877-HELP CRS (1-877-435-7277).

Donations may also be sent via check by standard mail to: Catholic Relief Services, P.O. Box 17090, Baltimore, MD, 21203-7090. Donors are asked to mark “Pakistan Flooding” in the memo section of their check.

CS&T Staff Writer Christie L. Chicoine may be reached at 215-587-2468 or