In a letter sent to faithful of the Diocese of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, His Grace, Bishop Tikhon confirmed that two parishes and numerous faithful have been affected by flooding in the Wilkes-Barre region.
“I am also asking all the faithful of our diocese to continue to offer prayers for those who have been affected by the present disaster: those who have suffered great personal loss, have been displaced or have had their homes and businesses destroyed and damaged by the flooding,” Bishop Tikhon wrote. “One of our parishes, Holy Cross in Williamsport, has sustained some water damage, and Saint John the Baptist Church in Edwardsville is presently under the evacuation order in effect for Luzerne County and the Wilkes-Barre area.”
Wilkes-Barre’s Holy Resurrection Cathedral appears to have been spared flood damage. While reports elsewhere indicated that the Plains district of Wilkes-Barre had been especially hard hit, Holy Trinity Church also appears to have been spared.
“Anyone who is in a position to offer assistance should make every effort to help those who may be in immediate need of food, clothing or lodging,” Bishop Tikhon continued. “It is times like these that provide us with the opportunity to put into practice the commandments of Christ: by offering our help to those in need, by being generous to those in want and by sharing the love of Christ in concrete and visible ways.
“As we look to these immediate needs, we should also prepare ourselves for the long-term work of recovery and clean-up from the present devastation, which will undoubtedly take weeks and months,” Bishop Tikhon concluded. “I would ask all of our parishes to consider all the ways that they might help in the coming days and to take united action within your parishes to help bring healing and restoration to the wider community.”
The complete text of Bishop Tikhon’s letter may be read at http://doepa.org/files/2011.09.10-Letter-re-Flood-and-9-11.pdf.