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Tinian parishioners reach out to community members

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TINIAN — Parishioners of San Jose Church are once again seeking the support of community members to help rebuild the island’s church, which was destroyed by Super Typhoon Yutu in Oct. 2018.

“In this time of need we see people, regardless of ethnicity, coming together and giving their support,” said Balbina Perez, one of the parishioners.

She said the parish is selling raffle tickets for rebuilding the church.

As of Feb. 15, parishioners had already sold $7,000 worth of tickets, she said, adding that $25,000 worth of tickets have been printed.

The grand prize is a 2020 Hyundai Elantra or $10,000 cash and the raffle drawing is set for May 3 to coincide with the San Jose Fiesta.

The grand prize winner will be responsible for shipping the car and documentation fees.

Perez said there are also lots of consolation prizes.

“We greatly appreciate Triple J Motors as well as the other donors and sponsors,” she added.

The San Jose Church social hall is undergoing renovation to serve as a temporary house of worship.  Photos by Junhan B. Todino

Raffle tickets are sold at $10 each at San Jose Church on Tinian or at any Catholic churches on Saipan.

Fr. Anthony O. Aguason, the newly installed pastor of San Jose Church, said the Friends of San Jose have been very helpful in the rebuilding effort.

The group, he said, has also initiated the renovation of the church’s damaged social hall so it could be used as a temporary church.

Variety learned that it will cost at least $300,000 to renovate the social hall. The construction of the new church is estimated to cost $1.7 million.

“The renovation is still ongoing,” Fr. Anthony said as he also expressed gratitude to Tinian officials and local businesses, particularly Kyung Hee Corp., for their support.

Friends of San Jose president Kimberlyn King-Hinds said the support of everyone in the CNMI community “is so great.”

She said they are expecting to complete the renovation of the social hall before the fiesta in May.

Besides funding, their main challenges, she added, are construction materials and manpower.

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