Our hearts and thoughts are closely joined to our brothers and sisters in the path of the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. As the hurricane hit first at the beautiful town of Corpus Christi it seemed like a call from God to stir us into action. Corpus Christi is the Latin for “Body of Christ.” As Saint Paul wrote many years ago, “when one of the members of the body suffers, all the members suffer.” In this terrible tragedy where so many have lost their homes and all they possess, when some have died and others are injured, the hearts of all the members of the Body of Christ share in the pain of their loss. But as Christians we are stirred to action. Tragedy brings out the best in others; it always does. We have seen the bravery of our police officers, firefighters, those on search and rescue patrols, emergency medical personnel, national guard, those serving in our shelters, the Red Cross, and so many other regular people who are doing all they can to help. It speaks to the goodness that lies in every human heart; the care and compassion that we have for our neighbors, especially those in need. In a country where politics has caused such sad divisions, where some people choose to tear down the fabric of our society by their hatred for others, by violence and destruction of property, how important to see manifested in these days such beauty, goodness and kindness. No one cares if you are a Democrat or Republican, no one is asking whether you are an illegal immigrant – what matters is that each person is seen as a beloved child of God; every life is sacred and precious; and those who are working to help their neighbors in need care little for differences. Every human life matters. We are all Americans who suddenly are confronting the fragility of human life and the most precious blessings that we have: our blessed nation and the freedom we possess as Americans; the cherished gifts of family and friends, the beauty of the gift of life, the faith in God that gives us strength and peace, and the reality of God’s love that surrounds at every moment of life in good times and in bad. Nothing else matters in the end. May we learn to treasure the priorities in life and not wait for another tragedy to strike to build up the bonds of unity and love with everyone in our country – brothers and sisters all in Jesus Christ – members of the Body of Christ (Corpus Christi). God bless those confronting this hurricane; God keep them safe and bring them through harm’s way; God fill them with hope for the future and give them strength.