I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me”—Psalm 69:2.
Since we gathered last Sunday for worship, we have been inundated with photos and videos from the devastating floods and destruction from Harvey in Houston, Rockport, Beaumont, Port Arthur, and other cities. There are heartbreaking stories-the little girl suffering from hypothermia, who survived after being swept into a canal by clinging to her mother’s body. There are stories of compassion. Wednesday, during a respite from the storm in Houston, some people began removing debris from their houses. One 69-year-old gentleman who lives with his wife and two grandchildren, ages 5 and 12, asked for help on social media. 50 people, most of whom he had never met, showed up to help. “This Pews under water: is what America is all about,” said his wife.
Emmanuel Episcopal Church
In this Sunday’s gospel, Jesus reminds us what being a Christian is all about. It’s not sitting back, grateful that we have not lost everything, waiting for God to clean up the mess: “If any want to become my followers let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”
The Outreach Committee has noted that Good Shepherd makes an annual gift to Episcopal Relief and Development on our behalf. They encouraged us, if we want to make personal donations, to do so at http://www.episcopalrelief.org/
The Bishop of Texas, the Rt. Rev. Andrew Doyle wrote on Monday that Episcopal Relief and Development and Diocesan staff have already begun to help coordinate relief efforts. He said, “I continue to give thanks for all those around the world who are praying for South Texas and for this Diocese. It is of great comfort to us to know that we are connected to and supported by the larger Body of Christ.”
So may we continue to pray, give, and stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters affected by the storm not only this week, but in the months and years to come.