From Stuart Lang, GBMB State Missionary, Disaster Response:
I think we can all whisper a prayer of thanksgiving that Florence was not as bad as predicted. That being said, continue to pray as waters continue to rise in the Carolinas. Rivers have still not crested, which means we still do not know the full impact of the storm. Here's what I do know:
* I have received ZERO requests for needs in GA. If you know of needs, please let us know.
* Our feeding kitchen will not be needed in South Carolina.
* We are still on standby for feeding in western NC, VA, or WV. American Red Cross is very concerned the mountainous regions of these 3 states may yet see flooding.
* Randy, my counterpart in SC, anticipates the end of this week AT THE EARLIEST before clean-up efforts can really begin.
Some of you are probably wondering why other state DR ministries have deployed to NC but we have not deployed anywhere. Here's the simple answer. We (GA) committed to SC and were the only state to do so. At the time of that commitment, Florence appeared to have SC in its crosshairs, and no one would have imagined the lack of feeding need in SC. For 2-3 days, we were thinking Florence may even come into GA via Savannah which would have impacted our ability to help SC. Other states committed to NC just like we committed to SC. As it all turns out, NC sustained the brunt of the damage and will require the most out-of-state help.
Here are some practical ways you can help:
* Pray for those affected as they return to their houses and begin to rebuild.
* Pray for those families who lost loved ones.
* Pray for SBC DR efforts as they continue to ramp up over coming days and weeks.
* Discourage the collection of donations unless you have someone on the receiving end ready to receive and distribute those goods.
* Encourage your churches to attend one of our upcoming DR Orientations: 10/6 in Moultrie and 10/11 in Carrollton. Information and registration available at www.gbcdisasterrelief.org<http://www.gbcdisasterrelief.org>.
Stuart Lang, DMin
Georgia Baptist Mission Board