CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Fish is a popular dish for many Catholics during this season of Lent, a period of about six weeks before Easter, because they have to abstain from meat on Fridays.
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Corpus Christi hosts a fish fry every Friday during the Lenten season. They said it’s their biggest fundraiser of the year, and this year their fish fry is breaking records every Friday.
Back when the pandemic forced the church to quarantine, they said donations plummeted. Their only source was online donations from parishioners.
One of those parishioners is Diane Davies who said it’s also worth it to donate her time volunteering at the fish fry.
“We all need to do some kind of work for the church and this is the best way for me to do it,” Davies said.
The church said donations have tripled in a year and they’re even doing better than in 2019. They said the money from the fish fry is able to subsidize at least $40,000 for their school, going to touch-less faucets and towel dispensers as well as offsetting tuition for families in need.
“The fish fry helps us support our school. We support our school through donations from our parishioners,” said Fred Castillo, a deacon at the church.
Pastor Frank Martinez said this year they have more sponsors than years past, even from further cities like Houston and Dallas. He attributes that success to social media and online masses that can be viewed from anywhere.
“It really seems like people want to be a part….people want to give…and they want to be able to know that they’re making a difference,” Martinez said.
He also said they’ve had to cut their budget down, but have been doing that since 2018. He said it might even be beneficial because it helps the church get rid of unneeded expenses.