BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Southerners turning to their faith to make sense of the devastation left behind by the second deadliest tornado outbreak in U.S. history also will be counting on the federal government for help, which Obama Cabinet members assured would come quickly.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano toured hard-hit neighborhoods of Alabama and Mississippi on Sunday to offer condolences and pledge support.
The storms that roared across the South last week flattened churches and crushed the homes of pastors and parishioners in a ragged stretch from Mississippi to Virginia. At least 342 people were killed and thousands more hurt.
So on the first Sunday after the disaster, believers streamed into houses of worship to give thanks for being spared, to mourn the dead and to ponder impossible questions.