First Responders, Disaster, Digging and Praying
My first official response as a Billy Graham Rapid Response chaplain was in 2003 Ft. Meyers, Florida after the five hurricanes. Then in 2005 was hurricanes Katrina and Rita. I chose to go to Groves, TX and Shreveport, LA. But went to New Orleans the next year. I can't pick a favorite story except one man in the St. Bernard Parish in New Orleans in 2006 came to our food/supplies location and hadn't smiled since before Katrina. His wife died of cancer a month before hurricane and they lost everything. We prayed for him and he was filled with joy and salvation. He looked like death worn over before but he changed immediately and could not stop smiling. He was unrecognizable from just minutes before. I forgot who took this photo, but sure glad they did. Because it's one of the most memorable parts of all the times I've responded to disasters. From left is me, the man we prayed with and a young volunteer who prayed with us. He is the one who began talking to the man and i just remember when he came under the canopy thinking, God, please help this man he looks like he's ready to quit.
Also, in 2005 Groves, Tx after Katrina and Rita, as a BGRRT Chaplain,I visited a business on the KMart corner where us cchaplains and Samaritans Purse were sheltered. The owner was a very short man, physically deformed and could could not operate a pen or pencil, and could barely walk well. His home needed trees and debris romoval and tarps. And when i asked him if he cansign the Samafitans Purse ppermission paper, he took his shoe and sock off his right footand signed the pap. Needlass to say, i said a prayer with him and his cco-workers and he rededicated his life to Jesus. He said he was Baptist when i had asked him if hehas Jesus in his heaft. O how many times ive said the same thing before.