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Places Of Worship Spring Into Action To Join The Post-Sandy Relief Effort

NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) -- During times of hardship many people look to places of worship for comfort and support, but in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy those places have taken action and played a role in the relief effort.

When Sandy hit, Chabad Center of the Five Towns in Cedarhurst, Long Island was transformed from a child care center into an emergency relief station.

"I meant to try and carry people through devastating times," Rabbi Shneur Wolowik told CBS 2's Don Dahler on Wednesday.

In Babylon, members of Pastor Tom Sutter's congregation have taken action to help those affected by the storm.

"It was exhilarating to see what was going on. People of all different faiths, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, stepped up to help almost from the moment the storm ended," Sutter said.

A group of Mennonites from Pennsylvania have spent more than a week in Union Beach, N.J. helping homeowners recover.

Victims of Sandy said they are grateful for any help they can get.

"What they have done here is Herculean -- and that's putting it mildly. They sprung into action so quickly and accommodated everybody," Karen Green explained.

And that help keeps coming.

"I just can't believe, they just keep doing more! Just when I think they've done it all, you get another e-mail saying there's more for you," Deena Intrator said.

Members of a Presbyterian church turned their gymnasium into a feeding center, staffed with a team of volunteers ready to hand out all of the donated clothing and supplies that rolled in.

In the aftermath of the storm, volunteers were heading out to help clean up devastated homes.

"Helping hands,  volunteers to go around, and yes, get into the gutter, coming back smelling of sewer, and when I gave them a hug, one of them said 'Rabbi, I stink.' 'I said this is your badge of honor," Rabbi Wolowik said.

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