Leaders of three Episcopal churches in Sonoma County, California are deeply involved in care for people displaced by the raging Kincade wildfire, according to Episcopal News Service’s David Paulsen. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Healdsburg, just south of the fire zone, served as a gathering place for evacuees on October 27. Its congregants, together with those of nearby St. Stephen’s in Sebastopol and many from the Church of the Incarnation in Santa Rosa, have since been required to flee the area entirely. The parish clergy for the three churches have been active in providing pastoral care and distributing emergency support to members of their communities scattered across the region.
Northern California bishop Megan Tranquir has been helping to coordinate a regional response through conference calls, and Episcopal Relief and Development and other California churches have been contributing to the effort, with many offering to open their homes to the displaced.
According to the most recent reports, the Kincade fire, which began on October 23, is 65% contained, and has burned nearly 80,000 acres. There are five additional active wildfires in Southern California, as high winds and dry conditions continue.