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Dominicans Survive and Minister During Hurricanes on the Island of Puerto Rico

Posted on April 26, 2023

Blog by Sr. Narcisa Barreto, OP

Puerto Rico’s streets are lined with hurricane evacuation signs – the sign of a people on watch for danger. But the hurricanes have made us more dependent on God’s merciful love, knowing that God will keep us safe whatever life brings. Hopeful are we who live in the land of Puerto Rico, we who love land, nature, and people at every stage of life!

As a native Puerto Rican, I have lived through so many hurricanes and so many crisis moments of chaos and destruction. Sadly, I have seen that the poor always seem to pay a higher price in these tragedies. in 1 Johm, 3:17, 1 John 3:17, the apostle tells us, “Whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?” As followers of Christ, we are called to share our abundance and to offer God’s charity.

As a native Puerto Rican, I have also been blessed to also see the recuperation from many hurricanes and natural disasters – the reconstruction of homes and the reclamation of land. I have been witness to a marathon of love – men and women cooking for their neighbors, distributing food and clothing, and offering financial assistance.

We Puerto Ricans know how to respond to a hurricane. We board up the places of refuge, like homeless shelters nursing homes, and schools. In response to the loss of shelter, schools serve as a sanctuary for children, and universities open their doors to house the needy and those made homeless by the storm.

We are grateful to FEMA, who has helped us recover so many times. We are also grateful to the Dominican Sisters, who have always contributed time, treasure, and prayer.

Prosper the work of our hands, O Lord.  Prosper the work of our hands.
Psalm 90:17.

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