Rita is now the third largest Cat 5 hurricane ever tracked, according to a Galveston newspaper, behind only Allen and Camille with winds of 190 miles per hour. Winds are up to 175 miles per hour. The hurricane is taking up most of the gulf of Mexico. About 1,100 Katrina evacuees still in Houston's two mass shelters were being sent to Fort Chaffee, Arkansas. Some Houston hospitals were evacuated. 1.5 million people are being evacuated from Houston alone. Lord have mercy on your people.
Save the weak and the orphan;
defend the humble and needy;
Rescue the weak and the poor;
deliver them from the power of the the storm.
They do not know, neither do they understand;
they go about in darkness;
all the foundations of the earth are shaken.
Almighty and most merciful God, you are still the Master of land and sea. We live in the shadow of a danger over which we have no control. The Gulf is like a provoked and angry giant. The sea can awake from its seeming lethargy, spill over its natural boundaries, invade our land and once again within a month spread chaos and disaster. Lord, have mercy.
We remember before you all poor and neglected persons in the paths of these storms whom it would be easy for us to forget: the homeless and the destitute, the old and the sick, and all who have none to care for them. Help us to protect those who have already lost so much and who are mourning, and to turn their sorrow into joy. Grant this, Father, for the love of your Son, who for our sake became poor and calmed the storm on the Galilee for the sake of his disciples -- Grant this in the name of your son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.