My travel this week has taken me around the western then the southern perimeter of superstorm Sandy. While it is nice to tell you that the travel was uneventful and your notes and prayers sustaining, many of our friends and families have had their lives forever changed.
Of our staff alone Kit Ilardi and Fr. Nestrock have immediate family on Staton Island and in other boroughs of New York City, in New York State, in New Jersey, in Delaware, and beyond. There is no way for me to know how many of the extended cathedral family have been impacted … but given our Lord’s teaching about who our neighbors, who our brothers and sisters, are, anyone impacted by this storm is our cathedral family. I am asking you to do three things right now:
First – pray for all impacted by and responding to this storm. Start right now, if you have not already, and pray every day. Be sure to include in your petitions a prayer for those who have no one to pray for them
Second – give something, nothing is to small, to support financial relief. Right now use the American Red Cross, Episcopal Relief and Development, or give during this Sunday’s services marking your gift “Sandy relief”. When I return I will work with your Cathedral Leaders to determine some focused efforts to address relief needs.
Third – remain steadfast in your commitment of prayer and support. The efforts to rebuild lives, homes, businesses, and communities is going to take a long time. We will be looking at many ways to help in addition to prayer and financial support. These may include mission/work trips, clothes gatherings and more.
God presents us with an opportunity in this to be what a cathedral is to be – a extension of apostolic presence and witness. I have an abiding calm that we will rise to this with God’s great grace.
This is another day, O Lord. I know not what it will bring forth, but make me ready, Lord, for whatever it may be. If I am to stand up, help me to stand bravely. If I am to sit still, help me to sit quietly. If I am to lie low, help me to do it patiently. And if I am to do nothing, let me do it gallantly. Make these words more than words, and give me the Spirit of Jesus. Amen.
Book of Common Prayer 1979, p. 461