On October 29, a most unwelcome guest visited the northeastern U.S. — a hurricane/superstorm named Sandy. As that blustery Monday wore on, we knew we were in for an event many would remember for a long time.
The wind and rain rose throughout the day and into the overnight, taking down trees and limbs all over Bethlehem. Most of the city lost power. Schools and some businesses closed for days. Thankfully, the storm took no fatalities in our area.
The storm did knock out power to the Moravian Church Center for a day and our phone, e-mail and Internet connections for four. On top of that, our internal network file server failed at the same time.
At first, I lamented the lost productivity this storm unleashed. The storm interrupted, halted or made inaccessible a major part of the work I do everyday. The timing was terrible, with a board meeting, travel Winston-Salem, the Moravian magazine and a major project for the Northern Province all coming due. I found myself getting agitated that this storm disrupted my life.
But as I heard what was happening in New York and New Jersey I changed my tune. The images on the news painted a more dire picture. While our churches in these areas came through relatively unscathed, their communities were seeing homes flooded, neighborhoods destroyed, lives forever changed. We had lost power and connections; people 75 miles to our east had lost everything.
Not being able to shop at my local market, access my computer files or receive e-mail were small inconveniences compared to the tragedy elsewhere. Unlike those in the heaviest impact areas, I had a home to go to, an intact neighborhood and safe friends and family. Life for me would soon return to normal. For many, that prospect is months away.
In the coming weeks and months, our churches in Staten Island, New Jersey and New York will continue to be part of the effort to help those impacted by Sandy. More information about how you can help can be found on page 6, or by visiting www.simoravians.org.
From the December 2012 Moravian Magazine