Of Disasters, Preparedness and You

I’m coming up for air and finally turning attention to stuff going on in the world (other than Church stuff).

I have caught up a bit about the horrible challenges that many are experiencing in Texas, due to rains and flooding.

Some people were notified to leave your home now or face the possibility of being cut off for days or worse.

So… would you be ready for such news?

“There’s a [FILL IN BLANK] coming.  Stop what you are doing, get your kids, and leave NOW.”

Friends, you simply must make plans along these lines, especially if you are responsible for the well-being of others.  You need some sort of plan.  That plan should include drinkable water, food, proper clothing, transportation and a place to go, if possible.  And don’t forget comms and self-defense.

Could you stop what you are doing, grab a bag, and leave?

I’ll bet quite a few of you readers have made at least basic preparations.  You may have “go bags” or “get home bags” or “bug out bags”.

It would be interesting to hear what you have done for BOBs or even your everyday carry items.  Others could benefit from ideas.

Remember: It always happens to somebody else… until it happens to you.

And…

GO TO CONFESSION!

Share

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Global Killer Asteroid Questions, GO TO CONFESSION, Semper Paratus, TEOTWAWKI and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

41 Responses to Of Disasters, Preparedness and You

  1. Sonshine135 says:

    I have a camp stove and fuel within reach along with about a 3 day supply of trail meals for the entire family, a 9mm semi-automatic, and I have chosen a rallying point in case we all are separated that is high and dry. Depending on the situation, we have a choice as to go to a different populated area or a lesser populated area and hunt and trap. My preference would be to go into the mountains with a lot of state park land available. Chances are if the SHTF, the states and feds will not be worried about the parks, but corralling and controlling the main population centers. I also have taught hiking, escape and evasion skills to my family. we also have a good ability to shelter in place or hunker down for awhile as well, but not as well prepared in that area as I would like to be.

  2. acricketchirps says:

    [FILL IN BLANK]? You mean like [MOTHER IN LAW]?

    yeah, my plan is to follow the Sonshine135 family around at a safe distance and live off their garbage.

  3. moon1234 says:

    BOB: Three VHF radios, with separate AA battery packs to augment the Li batteries, 9mm Semi-Auto handgun, five days of MREs, 12 pack of bottled water, water purification tabs (in case bottles run out), matches, lighter, small pot, large knife, small knife, thermal blankets, 100 rounds of ammo, two flashlights, flint sparker, first aid kit, small bottle of rubbing alcohol, small bottle of high proof drinkable alcohol (field surgery or nerves), survival book, small roll of duct tape and a few other odds and ends.

    This is just in the BOB. If time allows we take shotguns, rifles and about 1000 rounds of ammo as well. We have to keep what we have and give on our own terms. Locations are family and friends that we have talked with and are willing to take each other in. Some in town, some in rural areas.

    We also keep 50 gallons of fuel (mix of diesel and gasoline) onsite at all times. If people ask it is our lawn mower/snow blower/tractor fuel. It also doubles as extra fuel if gas stations are out. Portable 5000w generator is also available to pump water from the well.

    If things get really bad people will be trying to pour out of the cities. They will be looking to take whatever they can get their hands on. Training with rifles is important. People that are desperate can be like wild animals. We train all family members on how to stop an attacker, scare an attacker and mis-direct an attacker.

    We also have plans for someone to pickup our parish Priest and hide him if necessary. Several families have determined a transport schedule to keep Father moving in case someone is “looking” for him. We only know two other people and told others to not tell who the other protectors are. That way the chances of Father being caught a diminished as no one will know exactly where Father is at any time. Father also does not know about this plan. I think he would object and think we were all nuts. [Right. This is all crazy talk… until it isn’t.]

  4. rtjl says:

    Part of your plans should include your neighbors. Consider. I work at one end of my city and my children are at the other end of the city. If I had to leave NOW, I probably wouldn’t be able to get my children before I left. They would be on their own. I would feel better knowing at least one of my neighbors has my back with respect to my children. When you work out your emergency plans you should work them out with your neighbors to make sure important others are covered in case you can’t get to them. And make sure you are prepared to reciprocate. If they can’t reach their granny to get her out and you can…. just sayin…

  5. Elizabeth D says:

    My plan is to go to my parish church. It is about a block away. That’s all–but JESUS IS THERE. So if the SHTF I make a beeline for Jesus. I don’t have a car. There are lakes in walking distance for water. You can live a long time without food.

  6. As as Bear, I’m pretty much self- sufficient. My human relatives think only in terms of weather. The derrecho (inland hurricane) of 2009 was devastating, but it was amazing how people came together to help total strangers, clearing roads with chainsaws, etc. We live on a small farm and I have pondered how the Rule of St. Benedict might be adapted. I don’t see us bugging out so much as hunkering down and living on stocks of supplies and the occasional goat-B-Q. I have wanted to organize with our neighbors, but I don’t think they’d be interested until they were at our door looking for eggs.

    Don’t you think the Zombiepocalypse craze is a means of processing this possibility?

  7. Moral_Hazard says:

    Preparedness and emergency planning is fine, but I think plenty of people go to goofball levels. My favorite are the people that have everything short of crew-served weapons but can’t walk five miles. But if it’s a hobby, I guess :shrug:

    I live in a population center, but I keep some essentials, like food, water, flashlights, etc. We lived through Sandy so I try to keep the cars gassed, but if some real disaster hit, I doubt people will be driving out of the NYC metro area because the roads will be simply jammed like in Houston during Hurricane Rita.

    I try to stay focused on likely events, such as the power being out for a few days, gas stations losing their supply for a week or two, the house catching on fire. I like to have a bug out bag, but more for a middle of the night fire in the winter time than some silly apocalypse scenario.

    I saw a funny post on some prepper article a few years back that the most important aspect of preparedness is cardio.

  8. FrMJPB says:

    Most important thing in the first BOB I prepared was my letter of ordination to the priesthood with ecclesiastical seal and notarization (along with old celebrets issued for international travel so as to have corroborating evidence of my priesthood)….just in case–never know where one might end up and how long the manure might be hitting the fan!

  9. Bea says:

    Full gas tank at all times.
    Bottled water in the car.
    Near the door: Meds, purse with IDs, passport, cash, Holy Water and my St. Benedict crucifix, flashlights.
    If I have time to remember, I’ll grab a garbage bag and fill with irreplaceable family photos.
    Never thought of guns and ammo but I;m sure my husband will think of that first.

    Great idea: moon1234. I’ve often thought of converting a closet into a hidden mini room to hide a priest.

  10. thickmick says:

    EDC Rosary in my pocket, and back up Rosaries at home ,in car and hidden in secret areas throughout neighborhood. Worst comes to worst, I have learned to build a rosary out of sticks and pebbles…Pro tip…practice making it in blind folded in case the lights go out. Ave Maria!

  11. Phil_NL says:

    It all depends very much on the environment you’re in.

    For example, in my case – very high population density country, most self defense tools not authorized and living of the land pretty much impossible anyway – it boils down to one of two options: lock the door and stay put till supplies run out (and pray things return to normal before that), or get word of what’s going on well before everyone else and grab the car to more accomodating pastures before the roads will be utterly saturated. Depending on what kind of calamity occurs, that means I might have a fighting chance with option 1, a longshot on option 2, or I’m utterly screwed. C’est la vie.

  12. Pingback: Of Disasters, Preparedness and You | Fr. Z’s Blog | therasberrypalace

  13. “C’est la vie” is ok unless we’re responsible for other people. The most we’re prepared for here is a Tornado as that is probably the most likely of all disasters. Flooding unlikely but the weather channel repeats it often.TURN AROUND,DON’T DROWN.Unfortunately i think ppl believe they are going to be that one person who will get through. Not unless your Aquaman or a mermaid. Not going to happen.

  14. KateD says:

    I’d tell you, but then….who would hear my confession? Lol

    Seriously though, what we are focusing on now is long term health care. If WTSHTF turns out to be TEOTWAWKI and is not accompanied by the Perousia, illness and injury would be inevitable. Even a good supply of antibiotics may run out or expire. So we are learning about making medicines out of plants.

    Regarding the original question, layers and redundancy are good where feasible :)

  15. tioedong says:

    I don’t know about cities, but in rural Oklahoma, you drive to a relative’s place and or to another town and get into a motel. Then the local Baptist church helps you eat, and later their youth group will help you rebuild.
    As for being prepared: yes, I had supplies in a car just in case. The problem? If a tornado hit, our car and garage would probably be blown to Kansas.
    Here in the Philippines, in typhoons, people evacuate to friends and relative’s homes, or to the local schools. We have our own water pump and a generator, and enough rice for ten days. We have a lot of disasters, but if you look at the number involved, the death rate is actually low.
    The real danger will be if Manila is hit by an earthquake. Then we will be overwhelmed with refugees, run out of gasoline, and maybe even lose our cellphones (oh the horrors). Back to water buffalo pulled carts I guess.

  16. Auggie says:

    In case of a typical Natural Disaster (hurricane, etc…), I’m not quite prepared, and need to get to the liquor store.
    In case of an Epic Catastrophe, I would crawl (or swim) to the local parish and have the priest give me some assignment (and Communion).

  17. Kathleen10 says:

    acricketchirps, lol!
    I’ve definitely given this major thought, and purchased items, but it’s not wonderfully organized, and I also fear I’d be grabbing family photos. You know, that might be a good idea, put some copies of family photos with your stuff. I’d have the same items as you all. One thing I want to know more about is water, how to sterilize it, ways to get potable water from salt water, etc. Water is the thing. I’m also interested in knowing how to find food by foraging, a variable very dependent on where you live.
    I can’t get my family interested in this at all. I’ve mentioned it and I get…blink, blink. After I mention it my sister usually tells me I should stop watching the news.

  18. FrAnt says:

    I have a EDC containing some everyday needs, flashlight,screwdrivers, rope, etc. It also contains Oil of Sick, chrism, pyx, rituals. Next is the BOB for my two cats and me.

  19. benedetta says:

    Obviously the [FILL IN THE BLANK] makes a difference. For some of us already the SHTF, in some respects, and none of the BOBs or other preparedness measures currently traded around are able to anything. I for one think that Jesus and the universal call to holiness are indispensable for any steps.

    While I don’t disagree that many practical and important preparations must be made particularly for families anticipating not only weather emergencies but terrorism (different forms), war, anarchy, I think that as far as Catholics, the poster above who said he would head to his parish and see how he could be of help, or the other commenter above who participates in a plan of protection for his pastor ,to be important aspects that should be thought out. In these sorts of necessary discussions however I wonder whether we sometimes place ourselves in spiritual danger when adopting attitudes, not just towards the predictable “enemies” or genuine threats, but expanding it generally towards everyone, like me/us against the world, including brothers and sisters in Christ and rationalize our insular and perhaps paranoid attitudes as necessary means to an end, or as protection, or even “self defense” when none of those quite fit the circumstances, and we wind up doing harm towards communities already vulnerable and in need of strengthening before being able to weather through, whether as individual, family, parish, neighbors with neighbors, etc. We say we can’t take on genuine works of mercy or outreach or helping a friend in need, because we are already too burdened with defending ourselves against various threats and forces which we fear. I do not think that sort of mindset to be of ultimate help, whether long term or short term preparedness. I do not think it very prudent to see to our material plans and preparations while keeping an internal social darwinism ethos that dictates that it is now, because these threats exist, a situation of survival of the fittest, necessitating that we mow down the weak and vulnerable in our midst in order to save ourselves. None of us can save ourselves, and, if we lose our lives we shall save them. Every society and culture through history has had to come to grips with various threats to organized existence. There is something I think not very Catholic about saying, ahead of time, that since some situations will call for “every man for himself” that we are thereby justified in certain actions in our own communities. One thing is for sure, one will not find in other preparedness conversations in a post about BOBs, to “Go to confession”! I think we should take good heed as Catholics. There are Catholic ways to do things when threats approach a community, and there are very not Catholic ways to do it. It doesn’t mean that we are not entitled to prepare and defend. It just means that we go with God in that process, that we don’t jettison our eternal homeland when and while the SHTF. There are myriad examples of people who did it the right way through history, and, when threats come knocking, communities have a call to respond in a uniquely Christian way. The consequences of deciding not to go machiavelli or darwin, to mow over the weaker guy, to cut and run from others who need us, in our preparedness and our attitudes, even when it gets hairy, are of the greatest import, of much more import than life, limb, property even.

  20. MWindsor says:

    Moon1234 – Only 100 rounds?

    It’s been interesting. The creek behind our house (about a quarter of a mile away) has been out of it’s banks four times this year. Today, about five miles downstream, one of the local fire departments was running their swift-water rescue unit full speed, picking up people that didn’t turn around – including a cop, by the way.

    The news said we got 8 inches of water in six hours. I’ve lived in this neighborhood for 17 years, and I honestly don’t think I’ve ever seen so much water as we had at sunrise today.

  21. MWindsor says:

    That should be 8 inches of rain.

  22. andia says:

    I keep a backpack with several days worth of clothes in the car and two cases of water at all times.

    I am fully trained in martial arts, carry 5 black belts and am trainined in the healing arts. I can build a cabin from the ground up, hunt, trap and fish for my own food and garden for vegetables. I cook fairly well. My “parish” priest would not survive a major disaster -given his health problems, but I would take along any priest I could find.

    I have a kit packed up of my greatgrandmother’s embroidery tools, the family prayerbooks and rosaries. I carry several rosaries on my person at all times. ( I think I’ll add several to the car) and
    I have my Divine Mercy Painting and my other religious articles in close proximity to my exit way. ( arranged as a home altar- would take 5 minutes tops to grab)

  23. mburn16 says:

    Disaster Preparedness is a tricky animal, mostly because how to prepare varies vastly by the “disaster” in question. The way one would prepare for (or respond to) a flood or is not remotely the same as the way one would prepare for mass civil unrest.

    While I am sympathetic to those who are determined to insulate themselves from almost anything….the chances that you’re going to have to go off and live as a bushman is next to nil. The most likely cause of a need to flee your home is natural disaster (flood, forest fire, hurricane, etc.). The second most likely cause of a need to flee your home is some kind of hazmat situation. In the vast majority of cases, your evacuation will be temporary.

    The best – and most reasonable – preparation advice you can give someone is to keep somewhere between $300 and $500 in cash in the home, near important documents (which will also need to be taken, and should include lists of doctors); to keep medication in a single location; to keep your socks and undergarments in one drawer for easy access; to maintain gas in the car of at least half a tank; and to have a plan to go to the home of some relation between 50 and 100 miles away. Oh, and have a means of transporting fido and fluffy.

  24. mburn16 says:

    Actually, truth be told, if the last few years have taught us anything, its probably that people are LESS prepared to be able to shelter at home, even in the very short term (i.e. tornadoes), than they are to quickly leave an area.

  25. Maltese says:

    I have a bug-out house in a tiny town of 1,000 in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by mountains, wildlife, abundant wildlife, and water, all two hours from where I live. I’m more worried about a catastrophic cyber attack or stock market crash than any natural disaster. When money disappears, people can go mad. An AR-15 is my gun of choice.

  26. Maltese says:

    Also, in an emergency we need community. Try living in the forest for a few days alone.

  27. Glennonite says:

    My truck always:
    3/4+ in tank,
    Bike w/pump & flat fix,
    Backpack (GO BAG) w/3 days food,
    5 gal. water,
    Med BOB,
    AR-15 w/150 rounds,
    silver, chewing tobacco,
    extra food,
    tow-straps and winch

    My goal is to make it home, with or without the truck, in three days. Beyond that, hungry folks will become a serious obstacle to travel.

  28. gramma10 says:

    Wow! Seems like most of you are prepared.
    I have a big berkey water filter and should get extra filters. It filters dirty water.
    I take meds that need refrigeration and are necessary for my ability to function.
    Guess I should get my cooling ‘thing’ activated.
    But really I figure that if something happens then it happens.

    I do not want to go crazy planning for a situation that may never happen.
    Plus I have walking issues. I figure I may be dead meat anyway if I had to rush.
    Got to trust in God mostly.

    We had a derecho here a few years ago. Very scary. I was just coming home when it hit. The electricity was off so the electric garage doors did not open. I eventually got inside via the front door but could not find my key at first. It was dark.

    Then the electricity stayed off for several days. We got coolers and ice and made it through.
    Reminded me of the Three Days of Darkness that is expected one day. Padre Pio spoke of it.
    Now that is really scary!

    When it is time for God to call we better be ready spiritually first!!
    He is in control and whether we have food or supplies or whatever when a disaster comes, He is our refuge and our strength.
    Read psalm 46. It is the best survival guide I know.

    Hopefully we all will be helping each other as we humans seem to do in an emergency if needed.

    When I was young many people built fallout shelters. To no avail.

    There is always some kind of a threat. And btw we could get into a car wreck or be on a plane or train etc if it crashes and die. I think death is what scares people.

    Stay right with God and His mother and they will handle emergencies with you.

    Think of St. POPE JPII—-who had tragedy after tragedy happen in his life, death and destruction.
    He did not hoard or save things….he prayed without ceasing.
    He planned for disaster in a better way!

    Look! God and Mary saved him all along the way! He was chosen for a purpose.

    So are we. When God wants us home nothing we have done to save ourselves will work anyway and if He does not want us home then He will see to it that we get what we need.

    Isn’t that faith in action?

  29. gramma10 says:

    Oh and if you have not read Left To Tell by
    Immaculée Ilibagiza
    http://www.immaculee.com

    I highly recommend it. She was not prepared for the Rawanden massacre and as you read of the horrors happening and her safety…..you realize that God was protecting her the entire time.

    He does that! And on 9/11 the people who were ok were saved by God.

    Remember the stories of people who missed the plane and some who did not go to work that day or were late??

    They had no planned supplies! In an emergency I think 9 X out of 10 what will happen will happen.

    So be close with the Holy Family and know that if it is your time to return home not much you do will thwart God’s plans! Of course try all you want is it makes you feel better.

    Miracles do happen. Believe and trust that God is in the drivers seat.

    Guess I sound like a fatalist but I assure you I am not. Be at peace!

  30. MattH says:

    I agree with Moral Hazard that physical fitness has to be part of a preparedness plan. A little cardio, even if it is just walking, and a little strength training, even if it is just bodyweight exercises, increases your success rate on both ends of that flight/fight spectrum, as well as giving you capacity to maybe help some others along your way.

    Having some tourniquets, and knowing when to use them and when not to, would be huge in many situations ranging from earthquakes to riots.

  31. SanSan says:

    Ok last comment……all of you are comedians! Loved everyones post and ideas…..I’m ready…..went to confession.

  32. thickmick says:

    Yes Gamma10…I 100% agree. Trust in God. DEUS VULT….You can have all the preps in the world, but if GOD has other plans for you, then submit.

    I, for one, worry about my selfish nature. I don’t want to work to hard at self preservation when say my neighbor is being beat up or starving. I know how I am, SELFISH, and pray for the courage to resist hiding and hoarding so that I can come to someone’s aid even if it means losing my life to do so.

    Be at peace… RIGHT! We are not made for this world and giving your life for someone else is something all Catholics should be ready to do when the chastisement comes.

    Will we be ready to shout…Take me!!!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ah9XCamPyKA

  33. RichR says:

    I’m in the middle of the disaster area in Texas. It’s heartbreaking what many have gone through, and it has scared many more as to how underprepared they were.

    I have water and ammo, but I’m seriously looking at getting my house in order should the worst happen. As for guns/ammo, I would say your best bet is a Ruger 22/45 because ammo is cheap, the gun is accurate, it is easily toted, and it is a great hunting/SD gun. In a SHTF scenario, people will fear any gunshot wounds because hospitals are either out of commission or overloaded.

    As far as food, you can get MREs pretty cheap, and they last a long time. Water sanitation tablets are also a great and easy way to have peace of mind.

    Get one of those Dynamo-powered radios with a built-in charger and light. Have a cigarette lighter, multi-tool pocket knife, Streamlight Pro-Tac AAA flashlight, and pocket first-aid kit on you.

    These are just ideas that have come to me as we watch all of this happen around us.

  34. Suburbanbanshee says:

    “Grace builds on nature.” Trusting in God is good, but He does expect us to use our God-given gift of good counsel, not to mention our God-given, human-formed virtue of prudence.

    When Jesus prophesied the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70, He didn’t give the early Christians a detailed plan but He did tell them what to do and how quickly to do it. The early Christians acted upon that plan both early on, and at the time of the actual fall, and all the time inbetween. That’s why they sold their property and lived off it in common, and that’s why the other communities often had to collect money to support them.

    OTOH, God prophesied a different sort of plan to Joseph in Egypt. He told him to store stuff up during the fat years so people could eat during the lean years. This also saved God’s people, because it ended up saving Israel and all his sons.

    So be ready for either scenario, depending on what is fitting for your state in life.

  35. Marc M says:

    I have never given much thought to this question, but this is giving me a lot of food for thought. There is a certain amount of preparedness that it seems might take a very minimal amount of effort- MREs, communication, first aid, etc. I appreciate Benedetta’s comment about not allowing the SHingTF to rationalize an un-Christian “every man for himself” mindset, but charity includes being able to protect my wife and small children if someone decides that any kind of violence or violation of them is a good idea.

  36. oldconvert says:

    As somebody above-thread said, possible precautions depend on where you are living at the time. Here in England, for example, gun laws are so draconian that the only people who can access them easily seem to be the criminals.
    However, there still have to be some priorities so take your pick:
    -self-defence
    -access to clean water
    -access to shelter
    -in cold climates, access to heat to melt ice/snow for water, and to prevent hypothermia (not necessarily cooking, go on, you can eat raw food at a pinch)
    -some form of communication device to find out what’s going on
    -food
    -light

    Lack of water can kill you in three days. Amazing how many people think it grows in taps, or is delivered to their property safely filtered and by gravity alone. We always have some bottled water for drinking – just in case – and water butts enough for the animals and to keep food plants alive. For consumption, it has to be clean water. Dirty water will kill you or at least render you incapable, very quickly. Typhoid, polio, legionella, cholera are all lurking there waiting to take over again. Be warned, those water-sterilising tablets don’t kill everything. If they did, the resultant brew would probably kill you as well. No, they contain a cocktail of ingredients designed to pick off the most likely micro-organisms and parasites lurking. As a generalisation, running water is safer than still or sluggish, simply because nasties don’t have time to multiply, but this doesn’t hold true every time, even in temperate climes. In hill sheep country for example, there is a very unpleasant little liver parasite to be passed on in that lovely tumbling crystal stream; and in other areas, even those apparently uninhabited, you better be very sure what is using that same water upstream before you get it, whether animals, people or maybe abandoned mines draining god-knows what.

    Some skills that need to be revived:
    -lighting a fire from scratch
    -cooking over open fires
    -just how to cook basic unprocessed, unprepared foods. Skills like skinning, gutting, filleting fish, plucking poultry, rendering root vegetables edible! People of my generation (post World War II) learnt these skills as routine, so there should be plenty of teachers still around for those who want to learn.
    -map-reading (those old pieces of paper that come with markings on and without an audio-commentary) and compass-reading
    -basic first-aid
    -ability to identify wild food plants and fungi and more importantly, the poisonous ones. No harm in learning a few medicinal herbs also
    -fishing with a rod and hook or hand-held net.

    If everything does all go pear-shaped, all of the hi-tech equipment and supplies will sooner or later run out or wear out, and will not be replaceable. So don’t depend on such things longer than it takes you to get back to the basics.

  37. Latin Mass Type says:

    I live in an area where I would actually try to get to if I didn’t already live here. We may not be as prepared as we could be but we could survive off the grid. I have been prevented from growing my usual vegetable garden for several years and this worrying.

    I am reminded that I am not always at home! I need a BOB in my truck in case I am returning from a trip to confession and there is civil unrest or a natural (or unnatural) disaster and I have to walk home!

    If nothing else, remember to keep a comfortable pair of shoes in your car!

  38. We just had our last round of storms this morning for what looks to be a week; hoping things normalize here in North Texas. I can’t count the times in the past 6 weeks that I have been in the tornado shelter with my family, birds, and dog. So grateful that we have warnings before a tornado reaches us; this gives me time to haul everything into the shelter that I need to preserve, which are important papers and my first class relics. I have all other things at the ready in a huge “tornado bag”

    We needed the water, but I pray for a halt to the rain, at least until what is here is not saturating the ground anymore. We are blessed to be higher in elevation than many people here. Thanks to all who have been praying for us.

  39. Andy Lucy says:

    Go Bags, Get Home Bags, Bug Out Bags……. and INCH Bags. INCH stands for I’m Never Coming Home. With the contents of this bag, we can start our lives over. Actually, bags. One for each of us, with the load distributed so that the mules (myself and 16 year old son) hump the heaviest rucks (large Bergen patrol rucks) and my wife and younger son have packs more suited to their frames. We do not load the bergens like an SAS patrol…. trying to hump 200+ pounds is crazy…. but they do weigh around 75 pounds. We do practice walking with them, and they have helped our cardio workouts immeasurably. LOL

    Bugging out is a last ditch measure for us. Most of our preps are geared toward bugging in…..but we do have the option of picking up and leaving. As Robert Heinlein wrote (paraphrasing), how many have died simply because they waited too long to leave, mainly because they were too attached to stuff that didn’t really matter?

  40. benedetta says:

    At this point, you’re just not going to be able to find anyone who has devoted their life to defending someone vulnerable from quite clear and obvious threats to health and property than myself, ongoing. I just want to be clear that I am not at all saying that one should not prep or defend, far from it in fact.

    I’m talking about a larger sort of issue that says that because there are many powerful forces arrayed against us and up in our grill, and at the same time there are always the sorts of events that one must be prepared to survive, that people develop with respect to the ordering of their day to day life some anticipation of marauders intruding such that even actions against brother and sister in Christ, sometimes beyond the pale, are justified in some imaginary crusade that hasn’t exactly started yet, thereby leaving all of us that much more vulnerable when the S actually HTF. I’m not saying that the commentating here about confession, checking in with parish, protecting pastor are “charity”, no, what I am saying is, one must be spiritually strong, ahead of time, as one’s first line of defense, and, as Catholic Christians, at least, we have some obligations to our worship communities to look after one another already, to be mindful of where support needs shoring up, in real time. I’ll tell you, a prime place to start is with our youth culture. Do our Catholic kids take a cue from the public school world where it’s fun to trash someone weaker or an easy target (that’s called sadism essentially by the way)? Even though they and the secular culture might say that one is somehow less a sissy and stronger for that, the reality is that strength protects. Strength brings together. Strength does not isolate and exclude the vulnerable in our midst for easy picking off. I think we should look to the Sacred Heart for this. The model of strength is Christ. Or, St. Joseph. Preparedness and awareness of all of these threats ain’t worth a hill of beans as a Christian if you don’t work plans into protecting others into your plans in the here and now. The fact that Providence gives us some inkling of what a SHTF scenario might look like is not really necessarily only that we may survive, us and ours. If we are Catholic Christians some part of the process of providing protection if those are skills we have would also involve noticing real time threats occurring now that would look to divide our communities and not let the enemy win. Perhaps I am questioning a pepper fundamental rule which dictates that one’s goal must be to survive alone with one’ s family, therefore consideration of all others are necessarily cut out of the process from the get go, as a working presumption. That sounds to me like a pretty secular prepare approach. I challenge people knowledgeable to consider in real time, what if scenarios, and how to get to the protection they desire, without letting the enemy divide believer from believer or take what belongs to someone else even now. I think such actions would go a long way towards investing in the ultimate moments where we face the worst. And could even make all of us stronger. I am sure most are tittering away at this pie in the sky talk, as usual, but that apparently cannot be helped. I guess I’m saying that between the prepping and the scenario where you are defending what little food and water you have for you and your family by standing at the door with the rifle, I think there is a lot of really unaccounted for territory which is even unfolding now, with some carnage or losses that could have been prevented, and these are losses that we in the Church simply cannot afford, whether “just practically” or “practically and spiritually” to forfeit to protect what we’ve got ourselves set on.

  41. Glennonite says:

    Benedetta:
    I know what you mean about the secular vs. Christian view on what to prepare for. Do I look out and only prep for myself, or do I plan to render aid for those in need. I hate to say it, but it really comes down to math. If I’m ready for a year w/o the grid, why not give X to this family who needs help?
    Because the word gets out and soon there will be a town of equally needy folks who will render any preparations down to nothing. No one will say, “He’s given enough.” If they’re hungry enough, folks will kill and take to feed themselves and their loved-ones. No one will be satisfied with the can of soup you gave away yesterday if tomorrow they’re hungry again and they know you’ve got at least one more can. Soon everyone is reduced to the same level of destitution.

    The reason EMT’s, firefighters, and police protect themselves and their fellows first is because if they go out of commission, they are useless to the mission AND are now another liability. Just some thoughts…