Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Response to Katrina

Richard, of The Curate's Repose sent me a message today. He serves a parish in Metairie, LA. He described the situation there as "a total pass-up-the-dead-to-save-the-living-disaster (literally)". He is almost certain that he will have no church to return to. Visit his site for news and some startling pictures.

Richard asks that we consider giving to Episcopal Relief and Development;

On behalf of Episcopalians, ERD has sent emergency funds immediately to the Diocese of Mississippi. This emergency assistance will help vulnerable people whose homes are destroyed or severely damaged. ERD support will help the diocese provide aid to community members through two mobile response trailers, which are equipped with supplies like chainsaws and generators to assist in the recovery.

We are waiting to hear what kind of aid is most needed in Louisiana. We have also offered emergency assistance to dioceses likely to be affected as the storm moves inland, including Alabama and Tennessee. Forecasters also warn of the risk of high winds, flooding, and scattered tornadoes in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.

We offer our prayers for the people affected by this disaster – those whose homes are under 10 feet of water, those who have lost family members, and those whose businesses have been blown down and swept away. Please join us in praying for people affected by Hurricane Katrina.

To make a contribution to help people affected by Hurricane Katrina, please donate to the US Hurricane Fund by credit card at or by calling 1-800-334-7626, ext. 5129. Gifts can be mailed to: Episcopal Relief and Development, c/o US Hurricane Fund, PO Box 12043, Newark, NJ 07101.
A prayer offered by Renee Miller;

O God, we remember when the disciples of Jesus were terrified after a long night on a turbulent sea. When they cried to you for help, you stilled the sea and brought them to safety. We ask now that you comfort and still the hearts of those suffering from the effects of Hurricane Katrina. We pray for those who have been displaced and who now must return to homes destroyed or damaged by the storm. We pray for those whose lives were lost and for those who now must grieve the loss of a loved one. We pray for those who are attempting to offer help and relief to victims. While we wonder why such devastation can occur, where lives and property can seem held so capriciously in the hand of what is uncontrollable, we know, O God, that you count every hair on our head and that our names are written on the palm of your hand. Let your loving grace wash over those who must now face damaged lives, homes, and possessions. Hold them close to yourself until they are sure of the security of your loving embrace. Calm their hearts and still their souls, O Lord. We ask this for the sake of your love. AMEN.

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