Responding to Ike
600-mile wide Hurricane Ike barrelled ashore at 2:10 a.m. on September 13 packing winds in excess of 100 miles per hour. In its wake seven people were dead in Texas, six in Louisiana. With the floods that followed , Ike is now blamed with 47 deaths in nine states. The Episcopal Church is responding to the needs. The Episcopal Relief and Development website reports:
The Episcopal Diocese of Texas has been deeply affected by the storm. Recent reports are focusing on the destruction in Houston, Orange, Galveston, Beaumont and other areas. News continues to pour in and assessments are currently under way. Episcopal Relief & Development is responding with funds to address immediate needs of vulnerable families.An Episcopal Church News Service article is online here: Texas dioceses respond to Hurricane Ike. You may donate to the relief effort through Episcopal Relief and Development online here: Hurricane Ike Disaster Response and select for the money to go to Ike Relief.
The Episcopal Diocese of West Texas has been impacted by evacuated populations. Twenty-one of their institutions are functioning as Red Cross shelters and network of more than two hundred volunteers will maintain the shelters for as long as they are needed. These churches offered meal programs and relief supplies including tarps and water.
“Episcopal Relief & Development is communicating with affected dioceses in Western Louisiana, Texas, West Texas and Arkansas and is providing critical assistance as the needs arise,” said Don Cimato of Episcopal Relief & Development. “We are working in coordination with voluntary organizations at state and national levels with the goal of preventing the duplication of services.”
Reports from the Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana suggest that the damage caused by Hurricane Ike is significantly worse than Hurricane Rita. Clergy and parishioners have had their homes flooded. The Lake Charles and Sulphur region was drastically impacted and continues to be threatened by water surges.
“We are prepared to provide food, water, medicine, shelter and other basic supplies as well as long-term rebuilding in the aftermath of the destructive hurricane season,” continued Cimato. “Please continue to support and pray for the people affected by Hurricane Ike.”
Diocese of Texas Bishop Don Wimberly updating his Diocese