PRAYER EPISTLE – CONCERN FOR KERALA AND FLOOD VICTIMS
Prayer for Kerala and other Flood Victims
The southern State of Kerala is known as ‘God’s Own Country’. It attracts numerous global tourists because of its beaches, mountains, rivers, back-waters, valleys and forests. The land is thus regarded as a miniature expression of the Garden of Eden and God’s wonderful creation.
It is unfortunate that Kerala is reeling under one of its worst flooding disasters in its history. There are 39 dams in this State; shutters of 35 dams have been opened.
There are 44 rivers in this State, and in 41, water levels have risen above the danger mark; river banks are washed away. Since, it is a land of forests, several land-slides have damaged houses and habitats of the people. The hilly districts of Wayanad and Idukki have received excess rain of 70% and they have got cut-off from the rest of the State due to land-slides and floods.
The Cochin International Airport has been waterlogged; the run way is under 3 to 4 feet of water. Therefore the airport is closed. Even the road and river transport has come to a stand still in several parts and routes.
As per media reports, the death toll has risen over 60 (as on 15th August) and several are missing. In fact, a Red Alert has been issued in 14 districts. So far the loss estimated is 12,000/- crores. Several have lost their homes, lives, livelihoods, and agricultural fields.Not only have many people lost their dear ones and property, they are also under severe mental stress and anxiety.
While people may discuss the reasons for this calamity, it is a time for the entire Nation and the Global Communities to stretch both hands to embrace our sisters and brothers with our prayers and extend whatever support possible.
The National Council of Churches in India mourns with the people of Kerala. We assures them of our prayers and accompaniment at this time of trial and experience of crossing the valley of darkness. We hope and pray that the rains will subside and the flood waters recede.