By Catholic News Service 

WASHINGTON • The chairman of the U.S. bishops’ domestic policy committee May 24 called for “prayers for the victims and their grieving families and communities” affected by devastating storms from Texas to Illinois.

“I am profoundly saddened by the loss of life and the damage caused by the tornadoes and storms throughout the Midwest and related regions these past few days,” said Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida, chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development.

“As of this writing, millions of people in at least seven states have been affected by the powerful winds, rainfall and rising water levels caused by these conditions,” he said in a statement. Bishop Dewane noted that at least seven people have been killed in Missouri, Iowa and Oklahoma. Severe weather was expected to continue “in this devastated area” in the days ahead, he added.

“We are grateful that Catholic Charities and other organizations are in place working to provide for emergency needs” and to help people rebuild their lives and homes,” he said.

The Catholic Charities USA website – – has information about its efforts to help communities hit hard by the storms.