Update on Hurricane Harvey

Image: NOAA

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…

Like you, we are watching Hurricane Harvey very closely. We are in communication with DR leadership of both state conventions in Texas. They are working with Texas Emergency Management and partners in planning an appropriate response.

The National Hurricane Center predicts:

Harvey is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 15 to 25 inches and isolated maximum amounts of 35 inches over the middle and upper Texas coast through next Wednesday. During the same time period Harvey is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 7 to 15 inches in far south Texas and the Texas Hill Country eastward through central and southwest Louisiana, with accumulations of up to 7 inches extending into other parts of Texas and the lower Mississippi Valley. Rainfall from Harvey will cause devastating and life-threatening flooding.

We are asking that you place your kitchens on ALERT. Make sure they are prepared to respond. Also, please make sure you volunteers are prepared to staff these units at capacity for at least two weeks from the date of deployment.

We are also asking that your recovery units be placed on STANDBY. We do not expect to be able to send equipment and personnel into the affected communities until the Texas Conventions receive permission from the state emergency management leadership. However, having your volunteers and equipment on STANDBY will help Southern Baptists serve those affected with the appropriate response as quickly as conditions and local law enforcement allow.

So, I am asking those with feeding units to put your people on ALERT. If you need to draw from other areas of the state to put together a team, then do so. If you need help from us here at the office, please let us know. If you are feeding trained and would be willing to go with a unit, please let us know here in the office and we will put you in touch with one of the feeding teams as they need help.

Recovery units are being placed on STANDBY. I am asking Chainsaw, Flood Recovery, Shower and Laundry units to place your teams on STANDBY for possible response. For team leaders, please be in contact with your volunteers to see if they can respond. (Remember if you cannot field an entire team, we will work to join volunteer teams together to form a team.) When you have decided if and when your unit might be able to respond, please let Elizabeth Holmes or I know of your availability with an email or text. If units need any tarping material, we have it available here at the MMC.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Thanks for all that you do in bringing Help, Hope and Healing to those affected by a Disaster.

In Christ Serving Together,
Wes Jones

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