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The Trumpet Herald

Giving the trumpet a certain sound

October 2005

Hurricane Katrina

On August 29, 2005, hurricane Katrina, then a Category 4 storm with 145 mile per hour winds made landfall near Buras, Louisiana. It had already passed over Florida causing 11 storm related deaths. Ten thousand people, sheltering in the Superdome were exposed to rain and wind when the storm ripped holes in the roof. One levee broke in New Orleans.

On August 30, the death toll in Mississippi had risen to 100. A second levee broke in New Orleans. An evacuation of New Orleans was ordered.

On August 31, New Orleans police call off search and rescue operations to combat looting.

On September 1 the military decides to deploy 30,000 National Guard troops as looting and violence were spreading. The survivors at the Superdome and the Convention Center are without food, water, electricity, and working toilets. The crowd at the Superdome is up to 30,000 with an additional 25,000 at the Convention Center.

September 2 through 7, thousands of National Guard troops arrive with food and water. Congress approves $10.5 billion for initial rescue and relief efforts. The Congressional Budget Office predicts that Katrina's aftermath will include the loss of 400,000 jobs. Gasoline prices spiked at over $3 per gallon. (“Katrina Timeline,” The Associated Press on MSNBC.com, Sep. 18, 2005)

As this is being written, the death toll from Katrina is over 1000 and expected to rise further. Although it currently appears that the death toll from Katrina will be far less than the Galveston Hurricane of 1900, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimates Katrina will be recorded at the most destructive storm ever in terms of economic losses. (http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2005/s2506.htm)

Hurricane Rita which made landfall along the Texas-Louisiana coast on Sept. 24, caused new flooding in New Orleans, but was overall much less damaging than expected. (“Rita's Wrath Less Than Feared,” washingtonpost.com, Sep. 25, 2005)

Inspired Commentary

And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. (Luke 21:25-27)

While there have been hurricanes before, it seems currently we are setting new records.

Potential Flu Pandemic

The initial outbreak of what could explode into a bird flu pandemic may affect only a few people, but the world will have just weeks to contain the deadly virus before it spreads and kills millions.

Chances of containment are limited because the potentially catastrophic infection may not be detected until it has already spread to several countries, like the SARS virus in 2003. Avian flu vaccines developed in advance will have little impact on the pandemic virus. (“World has slim chance to stop flu pandemic, Reuters, Sep. 20, 2005)

Inspired Commentary

A pestilence such as a widespread deadly flu without an available vacination would likely cause a substantial fear on the part of great numbers of people with resultant drastic actions.

For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Matt. 24:6-8

Polar Ice Melting

A record loss of sea ice in the Arctic this summer has convinced scientists that the northern hemisphere may have crossed a critical threshold beyond which the climate may never recover. Scientists fear that the Arctic has now entered an irreversible phase of warming which will accelerate the loss of the polar sea ice that has helped to keep the climate stable for thousands of years. (“Global warming past the ‘point of no return’,” The Independent (online edition), Sep. 16,2005

“There could be dramatic changes to the climate of the northern region due to the creation of a vast expanse of open water where there was once effectively land,” Professor Wadhams [reportedly an artic ice specialist at Cambridge University] said. “You’re essentially changing land into ocean and the creation of a huge area of open ocean where there was once land will have a very big impact on other climate parameters,” he said. (ibid.)

Inspired Commentary

We have seen unusually destructive natural events lately. The above report suggests that we are in for more.

In the last scenes of this earth’s history war will rage. There will be pestilence, plague and famine. The waters of the deep will overflow their boundaries. Property and life will be destroyed by fire and flood. We should be preparing for the mansions that Christ has gone to prepare for them that love Him. (Last Day Events, p. 24 [1897]).

Oral Sex Among Teens

Signs of moral breakdown continue to appear in the press:

Slightly more than half of American teenagers ages 15 to 19 have engaged in oral sex, with females and males reporting similar levels of experience, according to the most comprehensive national survey of sexual behaviors ever released by the federal government.

The report released yesterday by the National Center for Health Statistics shows that the proportion increases with age to about 70 percent of all 18- and 19-year-olds. That figure is considerably higher for those who also have engaged in intercourse. (“Study: Half of All Teens Have Had Oral Sex ,” washingtonpost.com, Sep. 16, 2005)

Oral sex has been associated in clinical studies with several infections, including gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes and the human papillomavirus, which has been linked to cervical cancer. Condoms and other forms of contraception can be used to decrease the health risks of oral sex, but few teens use them. (ibid.)

Inspired Commentary

Given the entertainment trends in western society, the above report may not be surprising, but it should be none the less disturbing in terms of the potential loss of life to God’s kingdom when evil has run its full course and is put to an end.

And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. (Matt. 24:12-13)

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