Christians Search for Survivors in Joplin MIssissippi
Christians stand with those still suffering from flooding in the Mississippi Basin and those recovering from tornadoes in Alabama. Now they are in Missouri where the death toll from Sunday’s deadly tornado in the town of Joplin rose to 123 bringing the nationwide tornado death toll this year to 488. Still bracing for more potential storms, with 1500 people currently unaccounted for, churches and search and rescue teams are responding to the vast needs in a town that was 79% destroyed in a matter of minutes.
What can you do? Join CEN’s Joplin Pray-Care-Share Response Group to:
- Pray together using emergency prayer alerts posted by National Day of Prayer which are also posted on the response group site.
- Volunteer and meet the needs of Joplin through their local churches already biblically networked
- Receive ongoing announcements from CEN field experts like Sherry Buresh, from the Christian Appalachian Project, who is familiar with responding in MO and who post updated reminders such as: sending material donations at this time creates more problems for the responders or Christian relief agencies.
- Post stories how the Christian denominations, relief agencies and churches are sharing the Hope of Jesus Christ sensitively and appropriately with survivors
Even as chaos spreads to Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas and Missouri, the promise of Jesus to bring comfort in the midst of sorrow still rises above the pain as survivors assess the damage and focus on what they are grateful for. “At what used to be Peace Lutheran Church, members of the congregation were overjoyed to find a stained altar cloth and candlesticks in the rubble” reports USA Today. The congregation will “meet Wednesday to start planning reconstruction of the church.”
Asked about federal assistance for storm survivors FEMA director Fugate told Fox News, “Well, you know, right now, the locals with the volunteers and the businesses are really meeting the initial response needs. We’re going to support primarily, I think, with housing and people who didn’t have insurance for losses. We know we had a lot of people that had tremendous losses, not counting the loss of life to family members, so that assistance will begin as people register, but you start with the basics, which is search and rescue, which is what the state and locals have done. We’re here to support them in their recovery.”
You may not be in a tornado alley or have your home flooded, but emergencies will happen to all of us and those we love. CEN prays you will see this tragedy as another wake up call to become a Ready Church, one with a Church Emergency Team in place, with supplies and a plan to respond biblically in these increasingly uncertain times. “Be Ready to give an answer for the Hope within” as Timothy reminds us.