Darkness post-Katrinaby Kevin Butler
Five years after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, Lacy Thompson, former associate editor of the Louisiana Baptist Message, shares an opinion.
Darkness. Of all the Hurricane Katrina memories and images, the one that endures in me is darkness.
For weeks after the storm, I had to travel through New Orleans’ devastated Lower 9th Ward. Each night, as I crossed the Industrial Canal, I entered into a world that defined “surreal.”
There were no streetlights, traffic signals, porch lights or neon advertising signs, and rarely another vehicle on the road. To call it a darkness as deep as the soul is barely a clever turn of phrase. It was the type of darkness you feel when returning to a blackened house after a loved one’s funeral, knowing no matter how many lights you turn on, something and someone will be missing.
It was easy to feel isolated, forgotten, lost. Something was missing -- and maybe Someone as well.
“Do not hide your face from me,” the Psalmist cries to God. Entering the Lower 9th Ward each night it was easy to think God not only had hidden his face, but turned away completely.
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