It's not often that we have a natural disaster of such magnitude that the media need not exaggerate the story. Here is a picture from NASA that shows the satellite's-eye-view of the smoke and flame:
My husband and I have friends in areas threatened by the fires, as well as many of my family members, and former students and colleagues and their families.
Many people in L.A. and SanDiego counties have already lost their homes, and it is expected that many more homes will be lost before this is over. In places not threatened by fire, poor air quality due to massive amounts of ash and smoke is a serious problem. All San Diego county school districts, as well as Catholic schools operated by the Diocese of San Diego were closed today, as were several college campuses, including UC San Diego and USD.
Let us remember all of the people whose lives have been affected by these fires in our prayers.