One of the improvements I noticed recently as I entered our Administrative building is that we now have each of our core principles written prominently on the columns leading to the Chapel. Christ-centered. Caring for People. Courage. Trust. Vocation. Life-long Learning. As I am writing this, it is the Wednesday after Harvey and for so many it is the Wednesday OF Harvey. This life-altering event will have repercussions for hundreds of thousands of people for years to come. The biggest rain event in our state’s recorded history, the storm has displaced the residents of Houston, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Port Aransas, Rockport, and so many other cities and towns.
This affects our community here at home. There are students who had just returned to begin the fall semester and the others who couldn’t get back to campus before the storm hit. We have a sizable group of alumni in southeast Texas who are struggling with flooding and loss of possessions. Our brothers and sisters in the congregations of that area are mobilizing to help those affected and at the same time beginning the work of cleaning up their communities and helping others to do so. We have friends who have called, written, and posted to share the latest updates on progress and how to assist in the recovery effort.
I can’t imagine what these folks are going through. Pictures of elderly ladies on walkers in assisted-living facilities sitting in chest-deep water. A 34 year veteran of the police force drowning on his way to do the work of saving others. A young mother swimming a mile in choppy water, holding on to her 3 year old son, desperate to get to a rescue helicopter. Ordinary citizens going to extraordinary lengths with boats to rescue their neighbors.
Our community is preparing to help, and to put into action those principles that we remember each day. Donations of all kinds are being accepted for those affected by Harvey. We’re collecting clothing, toiletries, non-perishable food items, household necessities, cash, and other financial gifts. Concordia staff and students have planned a trip down to southeast Texas in the very near future to assist with clean-up. I’m always proud to be a member of this community, and you can be too. To learn more about how you can help, please visit http://www.concordia.edu/blog/five-ways-to-help-harvey-victims.html
May these women, men, and children find peace in times of trouble, love in the arms of family, faith in our God who promises that He is stronger than any storm, and joy in the knowledge that He works together for good for all who love Him and are called according to his promise.
May God bless you all….