Cathedral’s Barrel of Hope for Japan

Tuesday March 15th 2011

Belfast Cathedral’s Barrel of Hope is to be used to raise funds for the victims of the tsunami and earthquake which struck Japan on March 11.

Announcing the fundraising drive, the Dean of St Anne’s Cathedral, the Very Rev Dr Houston McKelvey said: “What we have watched on TV news reports and seen in the photographs in our newspapers shows a scale of devastation none of us alive today have even seen before.

“The consequences for life, livelihood and the people affected in Japan and elsewhere are so immense that any comment seems most inadequate.”

The Dean continued: “Despite having visited Sri Lanka after the Boxing Day tsunami, and been deeply affected by what I saw there, what has happened in Japan is on a much, much greater scale.

“We have placed a Barrel of Hope for Japan just inside the door of the Cathedral, to give the good people of our community an opportunity to reach out to help our fellow citizens in our global village. This community has done so before after the Boxing Day tsunami, and after the earthquake in Haiti last year and I appeal to them that they will do so once more.”

Dean McKelvey said the Cathedral intended to send a first donation of several thousand pounds later this week.

“We have been monitoring developments through our church and humanitarian relief contacts in the Archbishop of Canterbury’s office and at Christian Aid. We know that a massive effort between governments will be required but that will take time. More immediate help is required,” he said.

“I was delighted to see Shelter boxes being deployed already in Japan. These were provided by Rotary International whose effort was recognised in our first Spire of Hope Awards at our Good Samaritans’ Service last month.”

The Barrel of Hope for Japan will be available in the Cathedral from 10am to 4pm Mondays to Saturday, and on Sundays at services. Please make cheques payable to ‘Belfast Cathedral Sitout.’ Donations may be sent to Hope for Japan, Belfast Cathedral, Donegall Street, BT1 2HB. Gift Aid envelopes are available at the Barrel.


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