Bishop Praises Resilience of Flood Victims

The Bishop of Carlisle has praised flood victims in Cumbria, in the North West of England, for their resilience as he urged Christians to pray.

The Rt. Rev. James Newcome, spoke of his pride and gratitude to local clergy and congregations who have stepped in to assist flood victims with shelter, food and comfort.

"One of the most encouraging things about all of this is the way in which people have worked together to help the unfortunate people who have been most affected," he said.

"The grit, the resilience and astonishing sense of humor that has been shown by all the people in the worst affected areas."

Ten flood warnings have been issued for north-west England, while six are in operation in Scotland and four in Wales. In Northern Ireland, the Met Office warned of localized flooding in the west.

Floods hit Cumbria after record rainfalls last Thursday and Friday, leaving some 1,300 homes flooded. The Chief Executive of Cumbria, Jill Stannard, said fewer than 50 people remained unaccounted for, while around 60 people continue to shelter in the two main reception centers.

Bishop Newcome paid special tribute to PC Bill Parker who disappeared when a bridge over the River Derwent collapsed on Friday morning.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with all those who have been caught up in these terrible events, but particularly they are with the family and friends of PC Bill Barker," he said. "The community grieves at his loss. We are all so grateful for the dedication and bravery of all those who have been involved in rescue and support."

He encouraged Christians to pray and look for practical ways to help the thousands of people whose homes and businesses have been affected.

Churches Together in Cumbria have released a call to prayer for those who have lose homes and livelihoods, as well as emergency service personnel.

It reads, "In the presence of God: We wait to see what the immediate future will bring, we grieve with those who are facing great loss, we yearn for respite and peace, we pray to God for strength and courage."