LOUISVILLE

First, the Rev. Tom Dillard, pastor of Hopewell Presbyterian Church here and police chaplain for nearby Jeffersontown, Ky., successfully persuaded the city council — which was considering making a donation to aid Haiti — to make the $4,000 check out to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

A few days later, at his church’s annual chili cook-off and pie auction, Dillard volunteered to take a chocolate cream pie in the face to raise funds for Haiti, resulting in another $325 check.

Now the 182-member Hopewell Church is collecting a special love offering for Haiti on — what else? — Valentine’s Day.

“I just figured, let’s extend this a little further,” said Dillard. “And this year, since Valentine’s Day falls on Sunday, it seemed natural.”

Dillard and his congregation are urging other churches to follow their lead. “We would like to challenge all churches to take a special offering for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance on Valentine’s Day, to show our love and support for the people of Haiti, and all those who are working so hard to help them now.”

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance is accepting donations for Haiti relief and recovery online; by phone at (800) 872-3283; and by mail: Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, P.O. Box 643700, Pittsburgh, PA 15264-3700.