Disaster Relief Dorian

Most of us have watched with shock at the images and videos of the devastation that Hurricane Dorian has left – most notably with our brothers and sisters in the Bahamas.  Yet, we know the storm is currently still being felt along the eastern seaboard.  We grieve the loss of lives and the catastrophic damage to homes, businesses and churches. With any tragedy, the Church has the opportunity to provide timely and helpful response to not only meet vital needs, but also to show the love of Christ in our care and practical action.
Hurricane Dorian, which has diminished to a Category 2 storm, is now tracking north along the U.S. Atlantic coast. The slow-moving storm remains a dangerous hurricane bringing heavy rain and sustained winds up to 105 mph to coastal areas.  On its current path, the storm is skirting the Florida and Georgia and is expected to make a stronger impact in the Carolinas late Wednesday and Thursday.  However, other weather influences could cause Dorian to shift directions and create a greater impact.

Dorian entered the eastern Caribbean Sea on Tuesday, Aug. 27 and then strengthened to a hurricane on Aug. 28 as it pounded the U.S. and British Virgin Islands. Puerto Rico, still vulnerable two years after Hurricane Maria, received localized heavy rain and flooding, but no major damage. Over the Labor Day weekend, Hurricane Dorian stalled over the Bahamas as a Category 5 storm. Damage assessments are under way for the worst-affected areas, Grand Bahama and Abaco islands.

Here are some ways that you can be involved:

Don’t neglect the power of prayer on behalf of individuals, families, and communities during circumstances like these.  We ask that in your personal life, as well as in your family or your LIFE Group that you pray with passion and urgency.

First, we encourage you to make a financial donation for disaster relief to our Disaster Response Ministry of the PCA’s Mission to North America (MNA) for stateside efforts and Mission to the World (MTW) for the Bahamas.  They both will be coordinating relief efforts for the long haul.  You can read more and donate online. There are other organizations such as Samaritan’s Purse, World Vision and the Salvation Army.  You can also give to Wildwood Church (note that it is for Disaster Relief) and help our teams go and serve.

Our Student Ministry had the opportunity to serve on several relief missions to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi post-Katrina, Tuscaloosa in response to the tornadoes, Baton Rouge after the flooding there, Houston after Hurricane Harvey and Panama City and surrounding areas after Hurricane Michael.  

At this point, we are uncertain where we will respond, post-Dorian, but will always be looking for opportunities to mobilize teams to either serve stateside or travel to the Bahamas for relief effort.  Stay tuned to this page for updated opportunities.

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