Dear Friends in Giddings-Lovejoy Presbytery,
Presbyterians are helping flood victims in many ways. Woodlawn Chapel filled buckets with cleaning supplies. Pacific Presbyterian Church has turned its fellowship hall into a distribution center. Pastors have called the Presbytery Office asking how and where their congregations can offer support. Members have contributed gifts of money.
Pastors have responded to the crisis, requesting information and offering support for those recovering from floods. Some described the pumping out of their church basements as a routine their stalwart members have mastered. On Sunday I worshiped at Pacific Presbyterian Church. Following the service, Russ Williams took me on a walking tour the neighborhood to view the damage. I was impressed by clearly evident water lines six to eight feet above the ground water lines.
Three Presbyterian Disaster Assistance organizers arrived in St. Louis Monday afternoon. Our first step, they say, is to form a local team to coordinate with congregations in assessing community needs and organizing volunteers for clean-up, distribution of financial and material resources, and engaging in recovery efforts. For this team, we seek people with strong organizational and people skills. If you or others in your congregation would like to be a part of this team, please contact the Presbytery Office. Once in place, the team will match financial, material and people resources with needs. Donations received by the Presbytery will be distributed to fund flood recovery efforts. The team will keep you informed as opportunities for service arise.
Officials estimate 900 homes were inundated in the floods, mud and water closed roads and highways, and lives were lost. Outside Pacific Presbyterian Church last Sunday, the following words from Isaiah 43 were posted: “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.” God is with us as we trudge through the mud and water. God is with us as we clean up messes. God is especially with us as we help others. God is always with us. Please join the Presbytery Staff in praying for and helping neighbors who are suffering because of the recent floods. As opportunities present, may we show the love of God through our active witness.