Category : Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 6, 2019
Lost all power and the wind is whipping like crazy in @SummervilleSC; a lot of tree damage as far as the eye can see #chswx @Live5News #HurricaneDorian #weather #southcarolina #lowcountrylife pic.twitter.com/i6PXNQhJYA
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 5, 2019
Hurricane Dorian Track at 8am looking like big impacts locally here in the South Carolina Lowcountry
8am advisory on Dorian. Still a cat 2 with 105 mph winds. Windy and wet along the Florida coastline, but conditions could be much worse from Savannah, GA north through NC as the storm gets really close to land. pic.twitter.com/sS5AUyn8dq
— Storm Alert 3 (@WRCBweather) September 4, 2019
On the morning of July 4, I left Delhi for Uttar Pradesh to report a story on India’s feverish toilet-building campaign. I was out on the street most of the day, when I noticed ink in my journal was smudged with raindrops. “The monsoon has arrived,” I noted.
The smudged page also contained a fragment of overheard conversation: “We will marry our daughter to you only if you have a foot.” It was the first line of an intriguing story I would never write, because the next day I went for a morning jog in Delhi’s beautiful Lodhi Gardens.
That is really the last thing I remember with certainty. I only learned later that I had, somehow, made my way from the gardens to New Delhi’s Golf Course Colony, several miles away.
This is where a malignant brain tumor, as yet undiagnosed, struck me down and left me thrashing on the ground.
At one point he was taken for dead by a mortuary crew, who toe-tagged him: “Unknown Caucasian male, age 47 and a half.” Almost 70, @rodnordland found something to cheer him up after a brain tumor was found. “Well, I could learn to love this tumor.” https://t.co/EWlnJNoVYB
— Peter Baker (@peterbakernyt) September 1, 2019
— Charleston Weather (@chswx) September 3, 2019
5PM: No major changes. Dorian is still a severe hurricane with 150 MPH max winds. The NHC track continues to indicate a too-close-for-comfort recurvature, with the closest pass Wednesday. All depends on where and when it stalls out, which is expected Monday. pic.twitter.com/Y382eUlGOh
— Charleston Weather (@chswx) August 31, 2019
(Local Paper Front Page) A Lowcountry South Carolina Parish gets its steeples back 30 years after Hurricane Hugo toppled them
For David Shorter, Thursday morning brought back a monumental memory.
He was in the seventh or eighth grade at West Ashley’s Blessed Sacrament School in the 1960s when a construction crew installed the twin spires atop the new Catholic church next door. The schoolchildren were allowed to step over the steeples before they were hoisted into place.
Of course, Shorter also remembers them being blown down by Hurricane Hugo in 1989, and the church’s brick towers have stood unadorned ever since. At least until Thursday.
Shorter was among a few dozen who gathered just outside the church to watch as a construction crew hoisted the first steeple back into place.
“I ain’t missing this for no reason,” he said. “Twice in a lifetime.”
The spectacle was so dramatic that those involved waited until after the morning rush hour on Savannah Highway, reducing the chance of causing any wrecks. Thursday’s weather was near perfect: clear skies and only the slightest breeze. But a computer glitch with a construction crane ended up delaying the lift until the lunch hour.
But by 1:20 p.m., the first one — weighing almost 3 tons — was stood up and hoisted off the ground….
A few dozen gathered just outside the church to watch as a construction crew hoisted the first steeple back into place.https://t.co/xzmq5NlGiL
— The Post and Courier (@postandcourier) August 2, 2019
When Cyclone Idai struck the Southeast Africa coast last week, it swept away everything in its path, including churches, schools and homes in the Mozambican port city of Beira and beyond.
By Sunday, the number of confirmed deaths caused by the storm in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, already surpassing 700, continued to rise as churches, Christian relief organizations and agencies raced to aid the three countries most affected by the tropical storm.
After causing extensive flooding as a tropical storm, the cyclone — traveling at a speed of up to 177 kilometers (106 miles) an hour — made landfall on the Mozambican coast on March 14 and continued inland. On Saturday, agencies reported that the number of deaths had reached nearly 750 and was expected to rise in the three countries.
Last week, Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi said the number of deaths in his country could reach 1,000. Initial government estimates said nearly 1.8 million people were affected by the floods — including 900,000 children, according to UNICEF….
The fields where my grandfather and his brothers once played football are currently covered by several feet of water.
My grandpa Bert was born in a small Nebraska town called Oakland, a couple hours north of Lincoln, just down the road from Senator Ben Sasse in Fremont. Like much of northeastern Nebraska, these towns are now in crisis, battling the historic flooding that has devastated the state’s farms and ranches, killed three people, and dislocated thousands.
Currently the state estimates $439 million in damages to infrastructure, $85 million in damages to homes and businesses, $400 million worth of cattle lost, and $440 million of crops destroyed, placing the total damages, by my count, at around $1.3 billion….
Sadly, I cannot help but see this quickening destruction happening in my home state. The flood has soaked thousands of homes and hundreds of businesses to ruin in places that already struggled with a trajectory of economic decline and despair brought about by forces outside their control.
To understand the impact of these catastrophic floods in Nebraska—what they will mean for the communities in the weeks, months, and years after the rivers recede and the roads clear—we have to look at the state of the farmers, the men and women who have loved this place even when no one else did.
In the aftermath of this year’s flooding, many Nebraskans will show the generosity and persistence that defines this place and many others like it.
But rural America needs more than the occasional profile highlighting its ordinary decency https://t.co/wGgLLwDzT0
— Christianity Today (@CTmagazine) March 22, 2019
An RNS profile Article of Jamie Aten, a disaster psychologist who founded the Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College
At the turn of a new year, people often anticipate weddings, births, reunions, a promotion or other joys. Few greeted 2019 this week by counting on a flooded home or a dreaded cancer diagnosis.
Even Jamie Aten, a disaster psychologist who founded the Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College, wasn’t prepared for the news he received in 2013, when his doctor told him he had Stage IV colon cancer. Only 35, he had a wife and three young daughters. His academic career had just begun.
But as his oncologist told him, “You’re in for your own personal kind of disaster.”
Indeed, Aten would come to see his encounter with cancer through his field of study, which concerns resilience on the community level (he studied Hurricane Katrina) as well as the individual level.
Now 41, Aten has written about his journey in “A Walking Disaster: What Surviving Katrina and Cancer Taught Me About Faith and Resilience,” which will be published Jan. 14.
In a recent @RNS interview, @WheatonCollege‘s @drjamieaten speaks about his forthcoming book, A Walking Disaster: What Surviving Katrina and Cancer Taught Me About Faith and Resilience. Read it here: https://t.co/YNmO8QrfrG
— Wheaton Experts (@WheatonExperts) January 8, 2019
Scant attention is devoted to how we might avert the next catastrophe or whether we need to change the ways we function in a world where “extreme weather” no longer lives up to its name.
Climate change has caused our seas to rise and fueled ever-more powerful storms that hurl massive amounts of water from the oceans and clouds. And while much of our attention has been focused on the fragile coast, South Carolina’s inland communities have repeatedly taken a beating, as well, most recently from the trillions of gallons of water dumped by Hurricane Florence.
Consider that the tiny town of Nichols, a 90-minute drive from the coast, sank beneath floodwaters for the second time since Hurricane Matthew drowned the community in 2016. Rebuilding was still under way when Florence caused the nearby rivers to again jump their banks.
Climatologists and risk management experts say South Carolina, like much of the country, is woefully unprepared for these new threats, partly because the resources to help people understand and prepare for flooding are decades out of date.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s flood risk maps don’t consider several key factors, including sea level rise, development trends and extreme rainfall that can exacerbate flooding. Yet they are still the primary guides for how and where homes get built….
— Mike Fitts (@MikeFittsat140) September 24, 2018
During those first few days, we pastors were in shock. What would happen with our families? What would happen with the communities of faith we ministered in? We helped elderly people and small children flee the island for the mainland, unsure if we would ever see them again. The devastation across church facilities and congregants’ houses was enough to stir further panic. How were we going to rebuild? Where would we find the finances and the labor to work through this?
On a deeper level, we were forced to restate the purpose of our ministries: How were we going to minister to our communities during this time of utmost need? After decades of prosperity gospel teaching flooding our Christian churches and networks, we knew the majority of Puerto Ricans were not spiritually prepared to deal with a dream-shattering disaster like this.
But God, who loves us and works everything for our good, used these trying times to refocus the spiritual mindset of congregations everywhere, reshaping our understanding of the Christian life as it was intended to be since the beginning of the church in Acts: a group of chosen and saved people living in true community, loving God, loving their spiritual brothers and sisters, and loving the lost souls.
A few days after the hurricane, local congregations started to meet—no programs, no liturgies, no buildings in some cases. They read the Psalms, sang, and prayed. Without jobs and with no utility services at home, a sense of shared community kicked in, and everyone started to look for opportunities to serve the most pressing needs.
🇵🇷From Puerto Rico:
🇺🇸To our brothers and sisters on the mainland:
Keep praying and interceding for us, get to know the political and economic issues affecting our island (it’s your island too!), and don’t forget the needy and desperate among us https://t.co/rIQX0LeQAT
— Christianity Today (@CTmagazine) September 20, 2018
(LA Times Front Page) Unrecovered–A year after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico still struggles to regain what hasn’t been lost for good — while fearing the next big one
The rain falling into Bianca Cruz Pichardo’s home in Puerto Rico’s capital forms a small stream from her living room to the kitchen, past a cabinet elevated by cinder blocks.
The living room is dark, save for some light coming from the kitchen and a bedroom. The 25-year-old cannot bring herself to install light bulbs in the ceiling’s sockets because she fears being electrocuted.
For a year, her landlord in San Juan has told her he will repair damage caused when Hurricane Maria ripped through the island last September, she said, but still nothing. The worst of the rain is kept out by a blue tarp that serves as a temporary roof.
“He says, ‘This week I’ll bring the materials over,’” she said recently. “But he doesn’t do anything.”
Throughout Puerto Rico, the destruction caused by the devastating wind and rain generated by the Category 4 hurricane a year ago Thursday still shapes daily life.
One year after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico still struggles https://t.co/pefBnDtbRL
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) September 21, 2018
A Terrific ABC Nightline Piece on the rescue efforts in North Carolina in the midst of Hurricane Florence
Watch it all, it is a model of a news story that covers faith seriously and respectfully.
“Q:What do you need?” “A:Right now prayers. We’ve done everything man can do. Now it’s in God’s hands and we’re going to trust Him.”
This is the sign at the end of the abc report the ref is 'My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever' West Lumberton Baptist Church #hurricanes #media #religion #faith #parishministry #HurricaneFlorence #grief #perspective pic.twitter.com/NOBaM6t7Uf
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 15, 2018
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 14, 2018
Charles Cejka, Edenton, N.C.
Unfortunately, my family does not have the resources to put gas in our vehicle. If we did, the gas pumps here in Edenton, N.C., are empty just minutes after being filled it seems. Long lines of cars wait for fuel to arrive.
I, myself, came here to this city to care for my father, who was diagnosed with cancer, with next to nothing to my name.
We have no way out, so we are staying. We live together in a double-wide trailer.
The family and I have spent the last two days determining what takes precedence to pack and store away. We have prepared meals ahead of time. I bagged up paperwork and made many of my meals ready to eat and water filtration materials available for use. We struggled to find water to store with so many store shelves bare, but we managed.
As Hurricane Florence gets closer, our fingernails seem to get shorter. All this family can do is double-check things, lose a bit of sleep and pray.
“Unfortunately, my family does not have the resources to put gas in our vehicle…We have no way out, so we are staying. We live together in a double-wide trailer.” Tales from those in the path of Florence. https://t.co/CO2SngXPkE
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) September 14, 2018
FLORENCE: 5 AM UPDATE#Florence's track is unchanged. Winds are slightly weaker, 110 MPH. The outer bands are approaching NC's coast. If it makes landfall it should weaken. It's still possible Florence stays over water, remaining strong & moving south. pic.twitter.com/DkiO9DL8S9
— JoeyLive5 (@JoeySovine) September 13, 2018
NEW FLORENCE UPDATE —
— Live 5 Weather (@LIVE5WEATHER) September 12, 2018
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 10, 2018
(Stuff) Restoration of ChristChurch Cathedral risks delays if cathedral funding not granted sooner, Anglicans say
Restoration of the Christchurch’s Anglican cathedral could be delayed if the timing of public funding is not changed, church leaders say.
Church Property Trustees general manager Gavin Holley told city councillors on Monday that $10 million in council funding for the restoration needed to be paid sooner than planned. The money was needed within seven years, rather than the 10 years outlined in the council’s draft long term plan for 2018 to 2028, he said.
The Church Property Trustees own the cathedral building and land in central Christchurch. Holley, who was submitting feedback on the council’s long term plan, said restoration could not start until the $10m in funding is changed to within seven years.
(NBC) Faithfulness in little things is not a little thing–Heroic mailman still delivering the mail after California wildfires
Postman Trevor Smith has picked up mail from a senior community for the past 8 years. Today, he picks up their melted mailboxes.
The Island of Anguilla in the Diocese of North East Caribbean and Aruba featured in the most recent BBC 2 series, An Island Parish. It was badly affected by Hurricane Irma.
Speaking to The Church of England Newspaper on 27 September, Bishop Errol Brooks, whom the TV programme described as a ‘rock’, said the western half of Anguilla had suffered the worst. This is the Methodist area and two of their churches had been “really messed up”.
Of the three Anglican Churches the roof of St Andrew’s Island Harbour had been badly damaged. The winds that blew throughout the day had lifted a sheet or two of the roof in the main church St Mary’s in the Valley, and water had got inside.
While the worship area of the new section of St Augustine’s remained intact the 200-year-old section of the church had been badly damaged. “I do not know where to start,” said the assessor.
Damage was worse on the island of Dominica, where one of the Pirates of the Caribbean films was shot. The roof of St George’s Church has gone and the rectory, where this writer stayed when doing a locum on the island, is badly damaged. Barbuda, a small island off Antigua, had now been evacuated. The island of St Kitts however escaped without any damage.
Read it all (may require subscription).
(WSJ) The damage from Hurricane Maria–mostly in Puerto Rico–could be worse than Harvey and Irma combined
Hurricane Maria caused an estimated $40 billion to $85 billion in insured losses, mostly in Puerto Rico, catastrophe-modeling firm AIR Worldwide said Monday.
More than 85% of the insured loss is in Puerto Rico, AIR said. The firm’s preliminary damage estimate is higher than the firm’s estimates for Hurricane Harvey, which made landfall in Texas in August, and Hurricane Irma, which passed through the Caribbean before reaching Florida earlier this month.
To Mexico now where the death toll from last week’s earthquake has climbed to well over 300. Structures have been damaged throughout central Mexico, including more than 150 churches. That’s according to the country’s archdiocese. Hardest hit were churches in the state of Puebla, the epicenter of the quake. NPR’s Carrie Kahn sent this report from the town of Cholula.
CARRIE KAHN, BYLINE: In the center of town sits Cholula’s ancient pyramids said to be the widest in the world. It’s never been fully excavated, but to get to what is visible involves a steep climb.
Fifty-three, 54, 55 – I’m climbed at the top of Cholula’s ancient pyramid where the Church of the Remedies sits on top of the pyramid. Two of the beautiful churches’ domes have collapsed, and they’re not letting us go to the top. Instead, they’re holding mass outside.
UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: (Speaking Spanish).
KAHN: Dozens of parishioners have made the climb in search of solace in Sunday mass.
GERARDO LOPEZ RAMIREZ: (Singing in Spanish).
KAHN: Gerardo Lopez Ramirez is the church’s organist and tenor. He says his town is in mourning.
Some of the homes hardest hit by Hurricane Irma in Florida are also the least likely to be insured.
Florida has more mobile and manufactured homes than any other state. These homes, which are built in factories rather than directly onto a lot, often house low-income residents and seniors seeking cheaper housing for their retirement.
The homes are also less likely to be insured than many other types of homes, with the Florida Manufactured Housing Association estimating as many as 50% of the homes may lack insurance.
O God, Master of this passing world, hear the humble voices of your children. The Sea of Galilee obeyed your order and returned to its former quietude; you are still the Master of land and sea. During this storm we turn to You, O loving Father. Spare us from calamity, keep us safe in the palm of your hands and help us walk in your footsteps with gratitude and praise in all things. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 8, 2017
NEW track: Now is the time to fully prepare for Irma in Central Florida. Details on Channel 9. pic.twitter.com/MOyMztwHjM
— Brian Shields (@BShieldsWFTV) September 7, 2017
There is still much uncertainty as to northward turn timing and direction.
Diocese of South Carolina Parish Priest Karl Bruns Writes his Parish–On Hurricane Irma and the Current Litigation
I want to thank all of you for your prayers last Wednesday as we held a diocesan wide day of fasting and prayer and ask that you continue to lift the Bishop, the legal team, the Standing Committee, the clergy and the lay ministers of the churches of the Diocese in your prayers.
Our appeal for a rehearing by the State Supreme Court was filed on Friday and later that evening, the news of our appeal was made public. You can read more about the appeal here: http://www.diosc.com/sys/index.php, and you can read an analysis of the appeal at A.S. Haley’s blog; http://accurmudgeon.blogspot.com, and further information can be found at Anglican ink: http://www.anglican.ink/.
Basically there were two appeals made; the first was made on the grounds of violation of the state and federal constitutional guarantees as well as violation of 300 years of application of the natural principles of law by the courts in South Carolina. The second appeal for a rehearing was made on the grounds that Justice Kaye Hearn failed to disclose her personal connections to The Episcopal Church (TEC), to the newly formed diocese that is known as The Episcopal Church in South Carolina (TECSC), and her membership at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church in Conway, South Carolina.
After the ruling was handed down on August 2nd, the Diocese of South Carolina and the joining churches, we were given fifteen days to appeal, and we were granted an additional fifteen days to respond. Our motion to appeal was delivered on September 1st and TEC and TECSC will be given fifteen days to rebut our appeal. They will probably ask for and be granted a fifteen day extension, meaning that the State Supreme Court would not make a ruling until the first of October.
The hurricane metaphor holds very true in our situation as after the first of October (or whenever the State Supreme Court decides what they will do), the tract of the timeline becomes very unpredictable. I ask for your continued prayers and remind you to not only pray for wisdom and justice but to also pray for “the other side.” Romans 12: 14 says that we are to bless (pray for) those who persecute us and that is what I strive to accomplish in my prayer life. It is not too late for you to reach out to others and inform them of what is going on in our diocese and the unjust ruling that we have received and I encourage you to follow your conscience and act.