ANDERSON, Ind. —
Monsignor Robert Sell arrived in style Saturday at the St. Vincent de Paul Run/Walk for the Poor, which raised about $20,000 for poor relief.
Tim Doherty, the archbishop of the Lafayette diocese, which oversees Catholic churches in this region of Indiana, was unable to attend the event as expected. So Sell, the pastor of the two Catholic churches in Anderson, had the privilege of arriving by helicopter in Doherty's place.
"It's a bit of a disappointment, but he's (Doherty is) a busy man and we know he has a full schedule. We understand," said event co-chair Becky Hull.
She anticipated that nearly 400 people would participate in the Saturday walk and run. The run took place early morning, and the walk was at noon.
Hull said this was the fifth year of the event, which is held annually at a variety of locations around the country. According to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul website, the 2012 project attracted more than 19,000 participants and raised a total of $1.8 million at 220 sites.
Hull said the local event has increased in size each year, as have the monetary goals. Unlike some fundraisers for the poor, the event had an emphasis on monetary or tangible donations rather than food. Beds, couches and other pieces of furniture were donated with the purpose of giving needy families the essentials of life.
"This is a very community-oriented event, not just a Catholic event. Obviously, we're a Catholic organization, but we don't just serve Catholics. We're trying to help families that need it," Hull said. "And this is a fun day for the kids and everyone who showed up here."
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