Friday, October 14, 2005

Natural Disasters

In spite of the fact that the proliferation of natural disasters this year doesn't bode the end of the world, I still can't get over how many people have died this year in our world. It's mind-boggling. When I come into contact with one death, it's shattering; this is beyond imagination.

Tsunami: 275,000
Pakistan earthquake: 40,000 (forecast)
Hurricane Katrina in US: 1,000+
Hurricane Stan (Central America): several thousand ... unknown so far, but several villages are buried and lack of transportation, supplies, etc will do damage as well.
(and don't forget: AIDS in Sub-Saharan African: 2.3 million adults and children in 2004)

May we not become callous to the immensity of human suffering right now ... trust that God has a loving plan for the wind and the waves and the shaking mountains that obey his voice.

"All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated...As therefore the bell that rings to a sermon, calls not upon the preacher only, but upon the congregation to come: so this bell calls us all: but how much more me, who am brought so near the door by this sickness....No man is an island, entire of itself...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee."
- John Donne, from Meditation XVII

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