Many of you have asked how we are doing, how our church family is doing and how you can help. We appreciate all the support.
Yes. The situation is very grim and we are still in the middle of it. It’s hard to put into words. We are OK with our family. We have at least a half dozen church families displaced and a few more stranded traveling. There are many friends in our community who have been displaced. Not all have had flooding in their homes. Some have been devastated.
There is massive flooding here. We have creeks that are above historic levels. Just south of us Cypress Creek rose and dumped 8-12 feet of water into a subdivision. Same with Spring Creek to the north of us. There have been mandatory evacuations. Rescue crews are out in boats saving people. In some places you can’t see the first floor of the homes.
On the west side of town in the Cypress and Bear Creek areas they had to do a controlled release of two reservoirs so the levees wouldn’t break. People in the neighborhoods downstream are flooded. Dave and Dianne Hornor of Peace Community CRC had to evacuate and go to their church.
Those are just two areas. There is really bad flooding on the Buffalo Bayu in the center of the city. Fort Bend County in SW Houston where Mike Johnson (CRC pastor) lives was hit hard. To the north of us Pastor Pablo (church planter) had to evacuate his home in Splendora with flooding he said was “catastrophic.” They are in a shelter near by.
There are people staying in shelters all over Houston. Once the rescue phase is over we will have lots of work cleaning up.
We are praying for others and finding ways to help.
Here are a few ways:
1. Pray. We underestimate the power of prayer. Pray for God to move Harvey along. Pray for reservoirs to hold. Pray for families displaced. Pray for us to trust God and be Jesus to folks. Pray for our broader witness as Christians. There are some amazing ways we see the church being the church stepping up.
2. Donate. There are ways now and will be opportunities in the future.
Here are a few ways:
https://somebodycares.org (in Houston for 30 years; very well connected with city serving the poor)
https://www.redcross.org/donate/donation (they are doing great work in the city)
Our deacons are starting to coordinate efforts. Nothing in place yet since we are still in the middle of it. Feel free to check back in once we are out of emergency mode.
Some good advice about giving:http://m.chron.com/news
3. Volunteer. There will be lots of volunteer opportunities.
There will no doubt be local projects like helping one of our CRC planters Pablo Gaggero with his flooding in his home. He is in a shelter with his family in a nearby church. He said the flooding was “catastrophic.” There will be many others.
Here is an article my friend wrote. He is a local pastor up the road.
We are also working on coordinating efforts locally. Here is one example:
As I write this update, Jacie and Natalie on her their way to a local shelter to volunteer. Several of our local high schools and larger churches are sheltering displaced families. I have been fielding messages and communicating with people in our church, community and out of state. We will have more information once we are out of crisis mode.
I hope this update is helpful. Thank you for all your prayers.