Beloved homes are reduced to mounds of trash. Family heirlooms, photos, and recipes; vacation mementos; expensive, meaningful jewelry; needed medications; financial records; favorite shoes and outfits; and an endless list of other irreplaceable items representing a much-loved life are gone forever. And of course, that does not even consider the terrible loss of life.
How does anyone get through it all?
Saint Theodora experienced several devastating fires that claimed the community’s food, supplies, and many other necessities. One such fire occurred on her forty-second birthday. Fire devoured all their winter feed, the entire supply of flour, provisions, and farm implements. Once extinguished, Saint Theodora’s response was to clean up, rebuild, and keep going. (Seven Principles 36-37). Unfortunately, that fire would not be the last time she had to go through that process.
Saint Theodora offered this guidance in times such as these, “God alone remains. Let us attach ourselves to Him with all our hearts, and He will take care of us” (Journals and Letters 292). She also said, “God alone can console you, strengthen you.”
Those who recently experienced such loss because of the tornadoes can follow Saint Theodora’s advice. Those who did not can help by praying and sharing. Our combined prayers are powerful in healing and recovering. Passing on our pocket change and sacrificing a cup of coffee or two also is needed for those who are now left with nothing.
(Photo of marker on the spot where St. Theodora/Mother Theodore Guerin, and her five companions first stepped on the grounds of St. Mary-of-the-Woods.)
©Mary K. Doyle