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Locals step up for Haiti

More local churches are stepping up to help provide relief supplies and funds for Haiti, where a devastating earthquake struck last week.

“We wanted to try to do something in Suffolk,” CrossPointe Free Will Baptist Church pastor David Sexton said. The church is collecting medical supplies, food items, diapers and more to send to a team affiliated with its parent church, which landed in Haiti about an hour before the earthquake struck on Jan. 12.

Gateway Free Will Baptist Church, the parent church of CrossPointe, frequently works in Haiti, Sexton said. The team landed with a full load of medical supplies, but the provisions quickly ran out once the temblor hit.

“We’re trying to collect some things to get them shipped down to Haiti,” Sexton said. “Medical supplies and nonperishable foods — the medical supplies are the big thing.”

CrossPointe meets at the Hilton Garden Inn, 100 E. Constance Road, each Sunday at 10:30 a.m.

Requested supplies include antibiotic ointment, petroleum jelly, sterile latex gloves, sterile gauze, wound wash bandages, non-adhesive bandages, joint braces and wraps, slings, medical tape, sutures and other wound care supplies; nonperishable foods, rice, dry beans, trail mix and snacks; diapers and baby wipes.

A drop box is available in the hotel’s lobby during business hours. In addition, a special offering will be taken Jan. 24.

In addition, the youth group at St. Mary’s Catholic Church is having its annual 24-hour food fast, which will benefit the church’s Haiti committee. The group already planned to give the proceeds to the committee before the earthquake struck, said Donna Riley, coordinator of youth ministries for the church.

“We had already designated that our funds this year would be going to Haiti before the earthquake, but now it’s even more profound,” Riley said. “A couple years ago, the money built school desks for a school in Belladere where we have a twin parish, but this year we know the needs are much greater.”

The young people in the group ask family, friends and neighbors to sponsor them for the fast, either by the hour or for a flat rate. The youth spend most of the weekend together and have learning opportunities and prayer services throughout the day, plus “activities that will put them more in touch with what the people are enduring in Haiti,” Riley said.

Anyone who wishes to give toward the youth group’s fast is asked to call 539-5732.

For more information on CrossPointe Church, call 923-9059 or e-mail info@crosspointesuffolk.com.