Randy C. Davis
Dear Tennessee Baptists,
As I write this letter, Hurricane Florence is making landfall along the East Coast. The satellite images of this storm have been awesome. The breadth and intensity currently reported promise a sizeable impact and catastrophic damage for some areas. Please pray for God’s intervention, for those affected and for the Disaster Relief volunteers preparing to respond.
I am always burdened for those in harm’s way when I see natural disasters wreak havoc in people’s lives, displacing thousands, destroying their homes and in many cases taking the lives of their loved ones. Continue reading
We want to personally thank each of you who were able to come and celebrate the 40th Anniversary celebration on July 14 at the Missions Mobilization Center in Mount Juliet. The MMC itself is a testimony to God’s working through long-time TBDR volunteers Don and Ann Davis and their desire to see TBDR flourish well into the future.
We had a good time of fellowship and heard from different volunteers and two of the former directors talk about the past, the present, and those who represent the future of Disaster Relief. After lunch, we had a mix of music, testimonies, and a word of encouragement and challenge from Dr. Randy Davis, President and Executive-Director of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.
From Baptist & Reflector
By Randy C. Davis
TBMB President & Executive Director
An EF5 tornado dropped from the skies five years ago and roared across Oklahoma’s open spaces at 200 mph. It locked on Moore, Okla., then slammed into the modest Oklahoma City suburb filled with middle-class, salt-of-the-earth people. It bulldozed an elementary school. It was over a mile wide and ripped a 17-mile path through the heart of that city. The devastation was comprehensive: 24 people killed, more than 200 injured, and more than $2 billion in damage.
And within hours, Oklahoma and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief teams swooped in to serve people. Among them were nearly 40 chaplains caring for the emotional and spiritual hurts of people. But the great thing about Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers is that every person goes as a minister of the Lord Jesus Christ, even if they are running a chain saw. Continue reading
From Baptist & Reflector
The members of a DR team from East Tennessee salute the flag at the home of Army veteran Myron Havrilchak. (Contributed photo)
SOUTHBURY, Conn. — Myron Havrilchak, a resident of Southbury, Conn., was among the thousands of homeowners who saw their houses and property substantially damaged by the tornadoes that recently swept through the area.
And yet, when the members of the Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief team arrived at the Havrilchak residence on May 26, they quickly realized Havrilchak had something on his mind that meant more to him than brick and mortar.
Havrilchak is a veteran of the US Army, and he proudly flies a flag in his backyard. But the storms had destroyed his flagpole, and the 86-year-old Havrilchak, having the heart of a solider, was focused on rectifying the problem.
“When we got to his house, he was more concerned about not being able to properly celebrate Memorial Day (which was two days away) than he was about the trees in his yard,” said Larry Sharp, a member of the DR team from East Tennessee that was deployed in Connecticut. “So, we went to a hardware store, we purchased a piece of pipe, took it back to his house and drove it in the ground.” Continue reading
Team Leaders, Secretaries and DOMs,
Thank you for your continued support to those who are hurting.
Las Vegas – As of Monday’s conference call Nevada SBDR was in communication with the State Emergency Manager and offering assistance with Chaplains to help minister to those affected by the shooting. Please be in prayer for all those affected by the tragedy. Continue reading
Baptist and Reflector
As the updates and images continue to emerge from the destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey, many Baptists in Tennessee are looking for ways to help aid the relief effort.
Wes Jones, disaster relief specialist for the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board, wrote a letter to Tennessee Baptist Churches that outlines ways in which churches can get involved. The letter, which can be viewed below, was sent to pastors and church secretaries across the state. Continue reading
Hurricane Harvey is shaping up to potentially be the greatest natural disaster in our history. Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief teams are staged and ready, but they need your financial support to sustain what will be a prolonged effort. TBMB Executive Director Randy C. Davis offers a timely perspective on what Tennessee Baptists are doing and will do, and how you can help.
Baptist and Reflector
Photo: Texas National Guard
MOUNT JULIET — Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief is monitoring Hurricane Harvey closely.
As of Monday, Aug. 28, the Tennessee Baptist DR feeding unit was still on alert status while response/recovery units are on standby, said Wes Jones, disaster relief specialist for the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.
Alert status means there’s a good likelihood the feeding unit will be called out quickly while it’s more of a “wait and see” scenario for the response/recovery units, Jones said. Continue reading
Update on Hurricane Harvey and what we are being asked to do at this point. I shared this information with all team leaders, secretaries and Directors of Missions earlier this afternoon. Please be in prayer for those in the storm’s path and those preparing to respond. Please let your team leader know if you are available for possible deployment.
I know that many of you have been monitoring Hurricane Harvey which is expected to make landfall later today in Texas and then possibly sit there for a while before going back into the Gulf and then hitting Louisiana. Pray for those in the path of the storm and that its impact will not be as bad as they think.
We have been asked to place many of our units on alert and standby. The following is part of an email that I received from the North American Mission Board… Continue reading
By Connie Davis Bushey
News Editor, Baptist and Reflector
KNOXVILLE — He’s known as the “Tennessee Squirrel” or the tree climber among Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers. Children seeing him swinging around in a tree with ropes have called him Spiderman.
He is James Brown, a Tennessee Baptist disaster relief volunteer. Brown not only climbs and swings from ropes in trees, he manhandles a chain saw. The trees have been damaged by storms or fires and need repair or removal. Many times the trees are reached by volunteers working from bucket trucks, but sometimes the trucks can’t be used. Continue reading