October 2005



Congregation of Holy Cross 
Southern Province

The National Enquirer of the

Congregation of Holy Cross
Vol. 16, No. 10


Father John Korcsmar and other leaders from Dolores Parish, St. Ignatius Parish, and other Austin Interfaith congregations went up to Dallas for a regional gathering of I.A.F. groups 

There were survivors from Katrina and Rita there.  There were many interesting stories.

One of them was that when Katrina was driving people out of New Orleans, some people went to some of the towns near the Louisiana--Texas border.  In one of those towns, the mayor and city leaders did not want people to come there because they saw them as a burden on the rest of the city.  Interestingly enough, they too became evacuees and had to hope that some town would take them in!

The organizers and leaders from T.M.O. in Houston were invited by the Mayor of Houston to work with the evacuees in the Astrodome.  The other organizations provided food, medical care, counselling and other things.  The T.M.O. people decided that their contribution would be to organize the people within the Astrodome.  They gathered people together to discuss what their needs might be.  Out of that came issues like the cell phones being turned off for non-payment.  The mayor was then able to get them turned back on again, since the cell phones were often the only way for people to stay in touch with their families.

One of the very difficult questions to be dealt with is who will be "at the table" in the discussions about rebuilding New Orleans.  There will need to be many decisions about which schools, hospitals, clinics, bus routes--churches, and the whole social, physical, transportation, medical infrastructure of New Orleans will have to be rebuilt.  Some things will come first, some later, and some not at all.


In the yellow shirt, Jacob Cortez, son of Ernest and Oralia Cortez, makes a point during one of the workshops.

Jacob is organizing in Tucson, AZ.



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