Washington D.C., Apr 14, 2020 / 08:31 am America/Denver (CNA).
The bishops of the United States have offered their prayers in solidarity with the victims of extreme weather over the Easter weekend. At least 30 people were killed due to severe weather across the southern U.S. April 12 and 13.
“This Easter Monday began with the sad news that storms swept across multiple states in the South overnight, killing at least 19 people [at the time of this statement] across Mississippi, Georgia, Arkansas, and South Carolina,” said a statement co-signed by USCCB President Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles and Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City, who leads the conference’s domestic justice and human development committee.
Storms also caused damage in Alabama, Texas, North Carolina, Louisiana, West Virginia, and Tennessee. On Monday evening, the death toll from the storms was revised to “more than 30.” Recovery efforts are ongoing.
The archbishops said Monday that “we must reach out and offer assistance to those affected, especially those who are grieving the loss of loved ones.” They acknowledged that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this is harder than normal, but still essential.
“We pray for those who are suffering, for those who have died, and for the first responders who are courageously offering help,” said the archbishops. “We also pray for those who remain in the path of these storms and for their safety and well-being.”