Hurricane Otis: Acapulco archbishop calls on faithful to help ‘our brothers in need’

Hurricane Otis View of damages caused by the passage of Hurricane Otis in Acapulco, Guerrero State, Mexico, on Oct. 31, 2023. Otis smashed into the port city early on Oct. 25 with winds of 165 miles per hour, leaving a trail of destruction. | Credit: SALVADOR VALADEZ/AFP via Getty Images

Leopoldo González González, archbishop of Acapulco, Mexico, expressed his closeness to those affected by Hurricane Otis in Mexico and called on the faithful to help the victims, noting that each person is “God’s provident hand” in working together with those most in need in the face of the emergency that began on Oct. 25 when the hurricane made landfall.

In a statement González read Oct. 29 in a video posted on the archdiocese’s Facebook page, he thanked Pope Francis for his concern for the situation there.

After thanking the Mexican Bishops’ Conference for the campaign undertaken to help those affected, the archbishop said that at this moment, “each of us is God’s provident hands for our brothers in need. Maybe what we can do to reach out seems little to us, but let’s not stop doing it, it’s very valuable.”

“In these moments of crisis and difficulty, may the best in each person come forward for the good of all,” he urged.

The prelate also expressed his solidarity with the family and friends of those who lost their lives and said that with the community he is praying “for their eternal rest and for your peace, your family, and your friends.”

“With special affection I pray for those who have not heard from any of their loved ones,” he added.

The archbishop of Acapulco also expressed his closeness to those who have lost their homes and asked the Lord “for the strength for them to move forward, supported by what is planned for these cases in our society and by our fraternal solidarity.”

González also lamented “the destruction caused to many churches in our parish communities. A lot of it is very great: the destruction in the seminary and in some religious houses.”

Destruction in Acapulco, Guerrero state

In the early morning hours of Oct. 25, Category 5 Hurricane Otis slammed into the city of Acapulco and moved toward other regions of the state of Guerrero, leaving behind a trail of devastation.

According to TV Azteca on Sunday, the death toll had risen to 43, with 36 people still missing.

It is estimated that almost 10,500 homes were damaged in addition to several hotels, while of the 70 gas stations in Acapulco, only eight are functioning. The hurricane knocked down more than 10,000 light poles, of which about 3,200 have already been put back up.

The inhabitants of Acapulco, Coyuca de Benítez, and other towns have requested nonperishable food and constant police patrols due to the looting that has been going on during the state of emergency.

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

Our mission is the truth. Join us!

Your monthly donation will help our team continue reporting the truth, with fairness, integrity, and fidelity to Jesus Christ and his Church.