Springtime weather this year has been horrific, especially this week. On May 22, the tornado that plowed through Joplin, Mo., was the single deadliest tornado since the National Weather Service began keeping records in 1950. One storm has followed another daily, including today, striking communities large and small and leaving lives and landscapes changed forever.

Among the dead are Presbyterians, and amidst the damaged structures are Presbyterian churches. You can find out more details and information on how you can help through Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

Our hearts go out to all those who have been in the paths of these and previous storms and are now picking up the pieces in their wake. We pray:

Holy One, you are our comfort and strength in times of sudden disaster, crisis, or chaos. Surround us now with your grace and peace through storm or earthquake, fire or flood. By your Spirit, lift up those who have fallen, sustain those who work to rescue or rebuild, and fill us with the hope of your new creation; through Jesus Christ, our rock and redeemer.

Additional liturgical resources like the prayer above are available, including a service for those who have lost a home(PDF) and prayers for times of trouble and disaster(PDF).

May the peace of Christ be with you all.

Cindy Bolbach
Moderator of the 219th General Assembly (2010)

Gradye Parsons
Stated Clerk of the General Assembly

Linda Valentine
Executive Director, General Assembly Mission Council

Landon Whitsitt
Vice Moderator of the 219th General Assembly