Dear Ministry Partners,
Florence has moved on, but the disaster is not over. New areas are dealing with flooding, and flooding continues unabated in some areas. Damage is still being assessed.
There are many people to thank and acknowledge for their work and servant hearts as they help people in need in the areas dealing with the disaster. There have been deliveries of supplies, tree removal crews, compassion teams, and hours and hours of coordination. To all involved - THANK YOU!
The words below are from a Facebook post of a person who received help from a disaster recovery team form Hope, Wake Forest and Bethel, Claremont NC.
"This is the best and most caring group of guys that truly care for people in need. I can't thank them enough for their hard work for someone they didn't even know. I appreciated the talks here and there...they spoke to me like they cared about me and what I had gone through. I knew it wasn't fake talk. These men cared for our mental health and well-being. May Christ be your wingman and keep you safe. Thank you!"
If you are able to help, please consider volunteering. We have a volunteer sign up form on the SED website at http://se.lcms.org/hurricane-florence-recovery/
From Lou Jander, Texas District: September 20:
Dr. Lou Jander is a former Texas District Disaster Relief Coordinator and author of "Disaster Ministry Action Plan Workbook." He and his wife Martha traveled to North Carolina to offer compassion care to those in need. He writes....
"What a day! Spent most of today in two small towns: Dillion (pop. 6,000) and Latte (pop. 1,300), South Carolina. Again, were rerouted from the "planned" GPS Route to side roads. I-95 was closed between Florence, SC and the Pee Dee River...extensive flooding on the Interstate. When we arrived in Dillion, we visited a Red Cross Center with a number of people including county sheriff members and residents in the shelter... we listened to their stories, shared the Word with them, and prayed with and/or for them. There were some homeless people staying in the shelter...their stories were heartbreaking...they didn't have much before the flooding and had very little after the flooding. "
From Pastor Greg Williamson, Fayetteville NC
Greg teaches at a high school in Lumberton NC.
"I gave Mary Beth Clark, Maxton, NC, two gift cards. Her mobile home roof was ripped off during Hurricane Florence. She lost most her possessions and is staying with family members. Mary Beth has four boys, and they are living out of suit cases until they can find suitable housing. Mary Beth works on staff at the Lumberton High School cafeteria and is eager to get her family back to a stable, predictable routine. She was very thankful for the gifts. They'll help her as she transitions from temporary housing to a more stable, permanent housing situation."
Hurricane Florence continues but
the storm is no longer front page news, unless you are in South Carolina where rivers are cresting 2 weeks after the storm. Communities are on mandatory evacuation orders. Pastor David Panning (Holy Lamb, Myrtle Beach) has been working with a team to help families in Conway and Myrtle Beach move their belongings to higher ground as they prepare for their homes to be flooded. We give thanks to God that early reports today are showing that it may not be quite as widespread as first thought, yet with that good news is still the reality that many homes are flooded and roads have been closed and…life is different.
Your help is needed.
You can surround these folks in prayer. You can pray for all who are responding to the emergency crisis. You can pray for the continued generous hearts and hands of God’s people.
You can serve.
Orphan Grain Train, Millersville MD is a collection site for needed materials. St. John’s, Alexandria VA and Redeemer, Fredericksburg VA are collection sites. Materials delivered there will be picked up by Orphan Grain Train volunteers and driven south. (Thank you Tom and Liz DeMik). Bethlehem, Aiken is a collection site.
There are congregations and schools across the district assembling flood buckets and personal hygiene kits for distribution. Check our
for updated lists of additional items, such as tarps, formula and ensure, and cleaning supplies.