Chaplain Recalls Observations in Joplin

God bless you, Joplin. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.


Seen on the back window of a vehicle with Kansas plates:  NOT SIGHT-SEEING; THIS IS A RENTAL.

A couple of out-of-state men were arrested for looting.  It has been reported that jail inmates provided them a not especially welcoming special welcome.

A dog was running loose, trying to cross Range Lane, the east side north/south major thoroughfare.  A Jasper County Sheriff’s department car pulled into a nearby lot and the deputy emerged.  The dog tried crossing the street again, but came back; the deputy slowly walked toward the frightened animal, it would seem talking to it soothingly, and eventually bent down, picked it up, and walked with it toward the patrol car.  Not surprisingly, it turned out to be a K-9 officer.

One looter was jumped by several passersby, duck taped to a chair, duck taped over his mouth, LOOTER written on his forehead in magic marker, and told “Eventually someone will come by to get you.”  The citizen arresters then left and called police.

A nurse came upon the scene of serious injuries right after the tornado hit and left her car to help.  She helped so long that search and rescue teams were out looking for survivors and spray-painted an X on her brand new car.  When she returned and saw it, she remarked to bystanders: “Well, I guess I’m alright.”

God bless you, Joplin.  Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

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About The Author:

John Harth has been a Catholic priest and emergency services chaplain since 1987 and is a Master Level Chaplain and Life Member of the International Conference of Police Chaplains, serving the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Cape Girardeau and Scott County Sheriff's Departments, Jackson and Kelso Police Departments, Jackson Fire/Rescue and the Cape Girardeau County Emergency Management Agency. He is pastor of the Immaculate Conception, Jackson. Fr. John is also a member of the Federation of Fire Chaplains and a charter member of the Missouri Fire Chaplain Corps.

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