Skip to main content

Donate Online Update on Current Disasters

May 16, 2014

Disaster relief vols head home after major deployment

ELEPHANTS AT WORK – Bill Martin (center) puts the finishing touches on a pile of debris in the neighborhood of Parkway Church, Tupelo. Martin is part of The Flying Elephants, the disaster relief team of North Oxford Church, Oxford. (Photo by Tony Martin)

Most of the Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Task Force volunteers who fanned out across Mississippi after the massive tornado outbreak of April 28 have been demobilized, as the remaining chainsaw, debris removal, and feeding needs have been taken over by local churches in many of the hardest-hit areas.

Don Gann, consultant in the Men’s Ministry Department of the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board where the task force is situated, reported May 13 that formal operations were wrapped up May 9 but some volunteers are performing “mostly mop-up” operations before they return to their homes in the next few days.

Gann said the task force volunteers performed over 200 jobs while mobilized, including feeding operations in Tupelo and Louisville, and chainsaw and debris removal duties in those two cities and a number of other locations.

Damage was significant across wide areas, Gann said, so much so that many property owners are going to have to decide whether to even attempt to rebuild heavily damaged structures.

Gann said task force leaders have been pleased with the manner in which local Baptist churches have picked up a considerable amount of responsibility for the relief and recovery needs in their areas.

“The task force is going to make available every resource we can to help local Baptist churches function as the center of recovery activities in their communities,” he said. Disasters like this one often bring spiritual needs to the forefront of people’s lives, according to Gann, and Baptist churches are in a prime spot to help. “Disaster relief activities really change how people outside the church view people inside the church.”

Gann said the task force also encourages churches to get involved in community disaster relief activities, as a means of outreach and as a good way to show the wider community that the church cares about them.

The Mississippi Disaster Relief Task Force is funded by gifts to the Mississippi Cooperative Program and the Margaret Lackey State Missions Offering.

The Mississippi Baptist Convention Board is accepting financial donations to assist the victims of the violent weather on April 28-29. Checks should be made payable to Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, with “Miss. Disaster Relief” noted on the memo line. The address to mail donations is Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, P.O. Box 530, Jackson, MS 39205-0530. On-line donations can be made at mbcb.org/giving.

“In-kind” donations such as food, clothing, or equipment are not being accepted at this time.

For more information, contact the MBCB Men’s Ministry Department at (601) 292-3335 or toll-free outside Jackson (800) 748-1651, ext. 335. E-mail: dvail@mbcb.org.

May 5, 2014

Baptist volunteers at work in hard-hit storm areas

Volunteers from the Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Task Force have poured into parts of Mississippi hardest hit by the April 28 tornadoes and associated storm fronts that resulted in multiple deaths over a six-state region.

Jim Didlake, director of Men’s Ministry for the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board in Jackson, serves as coordinator of the Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Task Force. He said May 5 that Task Force chainsaw and debris removal teams were in Louisville, Tupelo, and other areas of north Mississippi damaged by the storms.

Didlake also said two Task Force feeding units were operational, with one situated at South Louisville Baptist Church in Louisville and another at Auburn Baptist Church in Tupelo, to meet food needs in those hard-hit areas. Trained Task Force counselors are also available in several storm areas, he added.

Didlake estimated that approximately 125 Task Force volunteers were working in affected areas. “They will be in the Louisville area about two more weeks, and in the Tupelo area about 10-15 days more.”

Jim Futral, executive director of the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, issued the following statement: “The hearts of all Mississippians ache over the loss of life in the storms. The last storm victim was found May 1 as searchers located the body of a precious eight-year-old boy in Louisville. The process of replacing stuff and materials has begun but lives cannot be replaced. Some lost a family member while others lost families. While thousands are responding to do what they can to help, only the amazing grace can fill some of the empty spots.”

The Mississippi Disaster Relief Task Force is funded by gifts to the Mississippi Cooperative Program and the Margaret Lackey State Missions Offering. The Mississippi Baptist Convention Board is accepting financial donations to assist the victims of the violent weather on April 28-29. Checks should be made payable to Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, with “Miss. Disaster Relief” noted on the memo line. The address to mail donations is Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, P.O. Box 530, Jackson, MS 39205-0530. On-line donations can be made at mbcb.org/giving.

“In-kind” donations such as food, clothing, or equipment are not being accepted at this time. For more information, contact the MBCB Men’s Ministry Department at (601) 292-3335 or toll-free outside Jackson (800) 748-1651, ext. 335. E-mail: dvail@mbcb.org.

May 1, 2014

Mississippi Baptists working in disaster-stricken areas

Click here for more photos.

Response and recovery teams from the Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Task Force have been activated and dispatched to areas of the state hardest hit by the severe storms of April 28-29. The four areas in which the teams are primarily working are Lee County (Tupelo), Winston County (Louisville), Jones County (Sandersville), and Lowndes County (Columbus).

Each of the four areas currently has four to five Mississippi Baptist teams, mainly conducting chainsaw operations and debris removal. A shower unit is stationed at First Church, Louisville.

Response and recovery operations are ongoing in several other areas, where local Mississippi Baptist churches have assumed responsibility and have not requested task force assistance. Disaster relief-trained Mississippi Baptist chaplains have been mobilized in several areas. In addition, Louisiana Baptist disaster relief units are on standby and available if needed. A total count of volunteers was not available.

Mississippi Baptist churches reporting damage include South Louisville , Winston Association; Pleasant Hill, Lowndes Association; Parkway, Lee Association; West Jackson, Lee Association; and State Line, Golden Triangle Association.

The Mississippi Baptist Convention Board is accepting financial donations to assist the victims of the violent weather. Checks should be made payable to Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, with “Miss. Disaster Relief” noted on the memo line. The address to mail donations is Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, P.O. Box 530, Jackson, MS 39205-0530. On-line donations can be made at mbcb.org/giving/

“In-kind” donations such as food, clothing, or equipment are not being accepted at this time.

For more information, contact the MBCB Men’s Ministry Department at (601) 292-3335 or toll-free outside Jackson (800) 748-1651, ext. 335. E-mail: dvail@mbcb.org.

April 29, 2014

Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Force Mobilized - Donations Being Accepted

The Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief Task Force has been mobilized in response to the severe weather outbreak across Mississippi on the afternoon and evening of April 28. A number of task force teams were dispatched overnight to hard-hit areas, and more teams will likely be activated as damage assessments are completed.

The Mississippi Baptist Convention Board is accepting financial donations to assist the victims of the violent weather. Checks should be made payable to Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, with “Miss. Disaster Relief” noted on the memo line. The address to mail donations is Mississippi Baptist Convention Board, P.O. Box 530, Jackson, MS 39205-0530. On-line donations can be made at mbcb.org/giving/

“In-kind” donations such as food, clothing, or equipment are not being accepted at this time. For more information, contact the MBCB Men’s Ministry Department at (601) 292-3335 or toll-free outside Jackson (800) 748-1651, ext. 335. E-mail: dvail@mbcb.org.

Archives