To the people of the Diocese of Calgary
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I write to you in the midst of severe flooding in many parts of our dioceses. The flood waters have required the evacuation of tens of thousands of people in our communities, and of course, among them are many members of our own parishes. As you will likely know from news reports High River, Canmore, parts of Calgary and surrounding areas have been particularly affected, but others in various centres downriver are also affected and under threat. I know that many of our folk have also been doing what they can to help; offering shelter for evacuees, providing food where needed, and volunteering time and energy to alleviate the impact of this crisis.
I am certain you already have been praying, but I would encourage you to persevere in that prayer for all who have been affected; remembering particularly those who have lost loved ones and those who have died, and for strength for those who are working to manage this crisis, particularly our emergency workers and civic leaders.
While it is likely that the main crisis will mostly be passed by the beginning of this next week, the recovery and clean-up will take weeks. Many of our neighbours will be struggling to get their homes and lives back in order. It will be a time of hardship, anxiety and frustration for many. It will be a time when many will need help, encouragement and support. Together as a diocese we will need to determine what it is that we can be doing to take our part in giving flesh to our Christian call to love our neighbour. I would ask that all of our members, with prayer and wisdom, seek ways to reach out as individuals and congregations to meet the needs that will be around us.
Please be assured of my prayers and those of the Synod Office staff at this difficult time.
The peace and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
The Rt. Rev’d Gregory Kerr-Wilson
Bishop of Calgary