(Above photo I took three year ago)
This Sunday Morning, I am joining the Holy Father and con celebrating with him the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in St. Peter's Square.
However, back at home in Richmond Hill, the town still remains evacuated due to the damage that Hurricane Matthew has brought. Evidently the roads are impassable and there is no electricity so the authorities have asked those who evacuated not to return.
In addition our bishop suspended the "obligation" to attend Mass in our coastal regions hit by the storm. So there is no priest or Mass at St. Anne Catholic Church in Richmond Hill!!!!
My Mass with the Holy Father for will be for my parishioners, especially those who may have suffered damage from the storm. But who knows what damage? I haven't heard a peep from the local media about Richmond Hill and what happened there.
As it concerns my family condo on Hilton Head Island, about 40 miles north of Savannah, which was also hard hit by the storm, I did find a video of the street on which our condo is situated and fortunately our area doesn't seem to be as bad as some other areas.
You can view the video of South Forest Beach Drive (near the Coligny shopping and beach area) by pressing this sentence here!
The reporter filming the auto tour remarks about half way in about a new hotel on the left side of the street and how unlucky for them to have their grand opening now. Then the camera goes to the right side of the street and the condo office with a green metal roof is shown with no exterior damage. A bit down on the right is our condo complex and the condos that face South Forest Beach seem unscathed as well. Ours is in the interior of the complex and would have been buffered by these condos. Who knows, though, about any large trees toppling onto ours or others in the interior. Ours, as well, is a bit higher up from the ground which would help with any interior flooding.
But I won't know for sure until two weeks from now when I return to the Savannah area. Tomorrow our group flies to Israel. We will be going to Catholic Relief Services ministries to learn how they approach helping those who need help from man made or natural disasters. A big part of their ministry is to help them to help themselves so that once they are gone, their recovery continues.
This will bring us into some areas of Palestine and Israel that are not very tourist or pilgrimage friendly. Pray for everyone.