Today is Sunday, September 24th, 2017

Sending prayers to help those affected by storms

A dried up child’s prayer card is seen as residents in the Meyerland neighborhood of Houston empty their homes as they begin to recover from Tropical Storm Harvey’s catastrophic floods Aug. 31. The Buffalo Bayou, which courses through the nation’s fourth largest city, surged past record numbers and flooded thousands of homes in Houston. (CNS photo/James Ramos, Texas Catholic Herald)

By Father Timothy Gollob
Special to The Texas Catholic

August turned out to be a very interesting month. Texans are prepared for this time of year to be full of heat-related stories. We are geared to look out on the prairie and see a sea of brown grass, but whoa!

This past month has turned out to be a time when record amounts of rain have turned the pastures green.

The ranchers are rejoicing in abundant harvests of hay, full stock ponds and lots of grazing for the cattle. But too much rain…. is too much rain. We have witnessed the Harvey effect. Somewhere out in the Gulf of Mexico the weather people fixed their instruments on a tropical depression. Immediately they let the computers work up a course for the storm to take.

From the very beginning it was announced that if a hurricane formed, it would bring great mischief for the folks of South Texas. And so it happened.

It is hard to imagine a week of rain when the amount falling each day would be measured in feet instead of inches! It was really a catastrophic time when the cascading waters of the bayous would be compared to the flow of Niagara Falls for each daily total of water. A million gallons? A billion gallons? A trillion gallons?

Back in the days of wind-driven sailing ships which wandered the oceans, there were many times when the weather got downright nasty. It would be normal to be blown off one’s set course. It would have been a disaster to be lost in the midst of the great oceans, but they had a solution.

The answer was simply to wait for the darkness to fall. Then the navigator could see the stars. He would fix his sextant on a known constellation and from that be able to ascertain the location and the movement of the vessel.

I think that is what we prayed for during the Sunday liturgy while the rain was falling in heavy waves on Houston. We prayed that we might fix our attention and our love on our Superstar….Jesus. Following his lead and imitating his love, we can weather any storm. We can be a source of non-violence and of peace. Storms of hate only bring confusion which destroys. Love unites.

Father Timothy Gollob is the pastor of Holy Cross Catholic Church in Oak Cliff.


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