October 17, 2018
By Aaron Weaver
DECATUR, Ga.— The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship is continuing its long-term disaster response efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Michael.
In a recent update, CBF Disaster Response Director Rick Burnette notes that CBF Florida leaders Rachel Shapard and Kenny Phillips, a church starter and disaster response volunteer, have been assessing needs in Florida’s Panhandle, directing short-term assistance and preparing to offer recommendations for long-term response.
Other CBF state leaders are helping to coordinate early response efforts too. CBF Arkansas Coordinator Ray Higgins has been coordinating the transfer of shower and equipment trailers to affected areas in the Panhandle, and Terri Byrd, coordinator of Alabama, has been working alongside volunteers to bring supplies to Florida.
Meanwhile, the response to Hurricane Florence in the Carolinas has continued to develop and expand. Rev. Daynette Snead, who coordinates CBF’s response in Trenton, N.C., has begun to receive teams of volunteers. Over the past week, volunteers have helped to remove damaged materials from the small community’s town facilities as well as residences. First Baptist Church of New Bern, N.C., is hosting many of these volunteers.
CBF of North Carolina Coordinator Larry Hovis recently visited Trenton and other affected sites in North Carolina, including the hard-hit Whiteville community where CBF recovery work will soon begin. In cooperation with CBF of North Carolina, CBF Disaster Response is preparing to engage a local response coordinator to manage volunteers and other recovery activities with FBC Whiteville, N.C., serves as the local host. Burnette will be onsite in eastern North Carolina next week to assist the work.
Additionally, CBF of South Carolina continues to provide flood recovery in Conway through the assistance of Impact Myrtle Beach, a local partner. CBF Disaster Response is assisting with advertising volunteer needs in Conway and the online registration of teams.
CBF Disaster Response is also continuing its long-term recovery in Jacksonville, Fla. (Hurricane Irma) and Puerto Rico (Hurricane Maria). With a grant from CBF Disaster Response, Pastor Jesus Garcia, a member of the CBF Ministries Council, was able to install new air conditioning units in a facility where volunteer teams are housed as well as make other storm-related repairs to Iglesia Bautista de Metropolis, the congregation Garcia leads and the host church for CBF volunteers in San Juan.
CBF Global Missions Coordinator Steven Porter made an appeal October 12 for financial donations to support the response to these hurricanes, noting that while the number of volunteer requests has been plentiful, donations have been few.
“Whether we’re experiencing fatigue due to the increasing frequency of these disasters or we’re simply becoming numb to the news reports, I want to challenge our Fellowship to come to the aid of our churches in these areas and their communities,” Porter said.
“St. Basil the Great reportedly said, ‘The bread in my cupboard belongs to the poor.’ Perhaps we could add that the drywall in my shed or the extra $1,000 in our mission committee budget belongs to the folks suffering in the Carolinas, the Gulf Coast or Sulawesi, Indonesia. Even a small gift multiplied across our Fellowship can make a huge impact. Won’t you give generously today?”
Support CBF’s Disaster Response work today with a special gift. Your donation will change lives. Give your gift at www.cbf.net/dr-give.
If you prefer, you may also give by mailing a check payable to “CBF” to:
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship
PO Box 102972
Atlanta, GA 30368-2972
*be sure to include “Hurricane response” in the memo line
CBF is a Christian network that helps people put their faith to practice through ministry efforts, global missions and a broad community of support. The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.