The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California has an update about the wildfire situation in that region on its website today:
The geographical area of the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California was hit by 18 different fires on Sunday night and Monday morning, destroying hundreds of structures and forcing the evacuation of thousands, including residents of an Episcopal retirement community and patients from several hospitals.
“These tragic fires have greatly impacted some of our congregations. Some of our people have experienced great loss,” said Bishop Barry Beisner. “Thank you for holding the people of this diocese in your heart.”
The Church of the Incarnation in Santa Rosa opened its doors as a shelter for some of the displaced, as did Emmanuel, Grass Valley.
Several highways were closed off for hours as the fires jumped major arteries.
All throughout the diocese, air quality ranged from somewhat smoky to extremely toxic. Authorities say several people have died in the fires, but their names have not been released.
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Director Ken Pimlott said fires had scorched parts of eight different counties, including Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, Nevada and Yuba.
The causes of the fires are under investigation.
“As this fast-developing crisis gets clearer, we will be keeping our friends informed,” Beisner said. He thanked the many people from around the church and community that contacted the diocese with “expressions of concern, assurances of prayers, and offers of assistance.” Donations to the bishop’s discretionary fund can be made securely online.
Please join us in prayer for those who are affected by the fires and for those who are fighting the fires.