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Update on OC Fires

A number of you have emailed asking about the "Triangle Fire" (or "Freeway Complex Fire") which has swept through parts of Orange County. Things have calmed down greatly today.  But it was sure crazy on Saturday!

Christ Reformed Church is located very close to Anaheim Stadium (where the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim play). The fire was never close to the church, although at my home (a few miles to the west of the church) it rained ash for two days. It was very smokey, and hard to breathe. Mind you, the fire was at least ten miles away!

We did have a number of church members displaced. One family was evacuated, another church member's father had homes burn on either side of his (in Yorba Linda) while his home was spared.  Several of our families live in communities adjacent to evacuated neighborhoods.  They were all packed and ready to go, but never got the call to leave.

It was a strange Lord's Day yesterday. It was hot and windy and we could see the dense smoke in the nearby hills to the north. A number of our members could not attend because of road-closures, yet we had a number of folk attending from a local URC plant, and several from Grace Presbyterian (Ron Gleason's PCA congregation) in Yorba Linda. The fire burned through the area where Grace is located to the north and east of us.  In fact, the apartments that burned in Anaheim Hills, are directly across the 91 Freeway from Grace.  And while the church was not damaged (thankfully), the road on which Grace is located (La Palma) was still closed on Sunday morning.

Here's a link to a great photo-essay if you are interested.  For those of you who don't know So Cal, the photos of Yorba Linda, Brea, Anaheim Hills, were all taken within a few miles of Christ Reformed, and many of our members know the locations that suffered damage first-hand. 

We are very thankful that God spared our congregation (and Grace Presbyterian).  Please remember to pray for all those who lost homes, or who have been displaced.  A fire like this disrupts life for nearly everyone who lives in or near these communities.  It take weeks for people's lives to return to normal.

Reader Comments (4)

For those who have never lived or spent any time in California, the nature of these annual fires may be a bit of a mystery. The native brush growth, primarily chaparral, does well in the dry Summers and damp Winters of the Mediterranean-like SoCal climate. But then before the rainy season starts the very strong winds begin to blow from the California deserts to the South, drying the brush further and making it like tinder for any kind of cigarette, lightning strike, or spark.

Before the state became populated by 19th century settlers the native American tribes used to take advantage of the situation and purposely set the brush ablaze in order to drive out hunted game. But now that situation has changed.

Personally, I like that climate and would not mind living there (although my spouse would never agree to it). But the fires and other natural events in the area do present a bit of a risk. Yes, indeed, our prayers are extended to everyone in the region affected by the fires. As though times are not becoming difficult enough, there's yet this obstacle they have to face.
November 17, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterGeorge
Oh the good ol days of living in Southern California and fires. I use to live in San Bernardino county and then up in the high desert (Apple Valley area) for almost half my life. The fires could really be frightning and to close at times. We live in Missouri now so we just put up with tornadoes and below zero weather in the winter along with humidity all year long. I prefer the mid west to the smog, rat race, and earthquakes (which really freaked me out). We will pray for all of you out there. Those fires are awful.......I know. Stay safe.
November 17, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterplw
The other place in the world that has fires such as California is right here in Victoria,Australia,and we are being prepared for a bad Bush Fire season.Total fire Bans-no naked flames in the open upon pain of heavy fine and or imprisonment-has been a part of my life and I am nearly 54.
I sympathise with those affected by these fires,and know that were it not for our Fire season being imminent,we would be sending crews over to help.
November 17, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterwayne
This fire was very close to several people I know. One of my friends said that his dad and several neighbor's fought ember's which was causing small fire's all night Saturday. Sure glad it is over and many homes were safe.

I well be praying for those who lost their homes.

Those pictures Pastor Kim, really show the fire and how it hit one or two homes and left the rest untouched. Only by the grace of God.
November 18, 2008 | Unregistered Commentertiminator

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