|Christian retailers and publishers impacted by Hurricane Sandy|
|Wednesday, 31 October 2012 10:48 AM EDT|
Christian retailers and publishers have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy, called one of the worst storms in the nation's history.
Since the storm made landfall in New Jersey on Oct. 29 with maximum sustained winds of 90 miles per hour, at least 55 people have been reported dead, millions remain without power and damage could total $20 billion, USA Today reported.
Jim Pitman, director of retail operations for CLC Ministries International, overseeing its seven-store CLC Christian Bookcenter operations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, told Christian Retailing that all CLC stores were closed Monday and two remained closed Tuesday.
"Buses and trains have now resumed operation, so we hope to have the remaining shops open Wednesday," he said. "We praise God that all our bookstores were undamaged by Hurricane Sandy. While the wind was very fierce, especially at our bookstore in Northfield, N.J., we have found no physical damage. About half of our staff lost power in their homes. ... Power has now been restored at our CLC headquarters [in the Philadelphia suburb of Fort Washington, Pa.] and our housing complex."
Pitman noted that the largest tree in his yard crashed due to high winds. "While it could have hit many things, including a missionary housing apartment next to it, it fell in the one place where it did no damage," he said. "Talk about God's protection. We were a bit shaken, and decided to sleep in the basement. Our staff have all reported that they and their families are safe, so we praise God for that."
Steven Kaye, founder of Teaneck, N.J.-based Creation By Design, which offers Bible-based trading cards, said he has been without power since Oct. 28, and electricity will, most likely, not be restored until next week.
"The hurricane has been substantial," he said. "We have had to close and will remain closed until power is restored at some point. In today's market, the loss of any sales is significant. No one has been hurt by falling trees or other damage, and so far, none of us have been flooded. This is saying something compared to our neighbors who have sustained substantial damages."
Based in Phillipsburg, N.J., P&R Publishing has been shut down by Hurricane Sandy. "We are currently closed due to the storm," the publisher's website said today. "You may still place orders online, but they will not be fulfilled until we return, which is unknown at this point."
New Jersey was the hardest-hit state by the storm, which stretched 900 miles wide at its peak. Now downgraded to a tropical storm, Sandy remains enormous, reaching from the Great Lakes to New England. At its peak more than 8.5 million people were without electricity Tuesday, and at least 17 states suffered intense effects from the storm, USA Today reported.