By Philip Timothy, Managing Editor
ALEXANDRIA – The Louisiana Baptist Convention wants churches and pastors to know help is on the way.
Disaster relief teams are in place or on their way, incident command centers are up and operating, taking calls and coordinating assistance (more than 1,000 calls a day just at the state command center in Alexandria), and financial aid is being disbursed to pastors.
So far, 57 pastors have received $1,000 each to help with expenses, “distributed through the director of missions in each of the affected areas,” according to Bill Robertson, pastoral leadership team leader.
“We expect to help even more,” he added.
Louisiana Baptists Executive Director David Hankins, who has been touring the regional incident command centers, said he wants pastors to know they are not alone.
“Many of the area pastors are working in their communities in addition to tending to their own needs. We want them to know we stand with them during this difficult and demanding time and will do everything we can to assist them in every way possible,” said Hankins.
“Louisiana Baptists are again showing their commitment to the Lord and their communities by their quick and sacrificial response to this historical event,” he said. “Our State Missions staff is working with area DOMs in an attempt to account for every pastor and every church in the affected areas.”
According to combined information from the regional incident command centers, 76 churches have been damaged by the flooding. Likewise, 25 parsonages and homes of pastors and staff members have also sustained considerable flood damage.
“If you know of a pastor or staff member whose house flooded, please contact Bill Robertson,” said Hankins. “If you know of a church that flooded, please email Wayne Shepherd, our executive assistant.
“While overwhelmed by the need, I am encouraged by the Lord’s provision and the spirit of His people,” Hankins continued. “Please continue to pray and participate in any way you can – either through making a financial contribution, providing needed supplies or by volunteering your time.
“May God continue to bless and direct our efforts in the days ahead,” Hankins said.
Write to Bill.Robertson@LouisianaBaptists.org to report a pastor in need, or, email Wayne.Shepherd@LouisianaBaptists.org, to report a church that experienced flood damage. Alternatively, call 877.487.4658 to share the information.
Check for additional information at LouisianaBaptists.org.