Seminary during Harvey

This is the first of a series of posts about experiences in Houston during Hurricane Harvey.

1. We’re totally safe at the seminary. Rain was nonstop and heavy, but our buildings are on very high ground and water never came close to the buildings. Most of the roads around us have been un-passable, so we’ve been holed up and waiting. As of Wednesday morning the clouds are gone and sun is up. Pools of water are drying up and the bayou directly behind us is going down. We’re still waiting for the waters to recede before real disaster relief can begin, but we’re preparing for outreach effort.

Water stayed far from the buildings

This was the highest I saw the bayou, its easily 30 feet high right here. But our buildings are another 10 feet up.


2. Because we can’t leave, the seminarians of St. Mary’s Seminary spent the entire storm in perpetual eucharistic adoration praying for those suffering around us. This constant vigil will remain until classes resume next week. We collected intentions on our facebook page and received over 60 (last count) replies. I know hundreds of other silent petitions are also being offered. Be assured of our prayers for you – those suffering, those suffering for others suffering, and those trying desperately to help. At one point power went out for about 12 hours, so we continued on in candlelight.


Mass by candlelight


3. Roads are clearing around us and we’re beginning our outreach. More info to come on my experience at a Red Cross relocation shelter downtown and our seminary effort at a private shelter up the road. More on that to come, but I’d simply like to reassure people that there is a very large group of people working very hard at ground-zero to keep dislocated families safe and comfortable. A lot more help will be needed, but it’s a marathon not a sprint. 

Thanks for all the support. More stories to come.

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