A priest and former US Air Force chaplain, Father Thomas Maikowski has more than four decades of religious service under his belt. Those serving as chaplains, as Father Thomas Maikowski did, often are called on to help individuals in the aftermath of tragedy or disaster.
In the wake of the recent shooting, the Diocese of Orlando in Florida has extended assistance to family and loved ones of the victims. It has served as the “hands and feet of Christ” in practical ways, such as offering grief support, taking care of funeral Masses and burial arrangements, and offering financial assistance in some cases.
Within hours of the shooting, bilingual staff members from Catholic Charities also made their way to downtown Orlando, setting up at the Hampton Inn to provide a safe meeting place for family and friends of victims, as well as offering translation assistance. The effort was facilitated in part by Deacon David Gray of the Orlando Diocese as part of a pastoral response to the tragedy.
A good number of the victims were Latino, hence the need for translators to help facilitate support and counseling with the families and loved ones. Other local Catholic churches and charity organizations are continuing to provide support and assistance as well.