Friday, August 29, 2008

Friday August 29th, 4 PM CST

Dear Friends:
What was to be a day of great celebration has become a day of watching, waiting and wondering. On the third anniversary of Katrina, the day we were to break ground on our new community center, we are preparing once again to evacuate New Orleans for the 3rd time since 2004. Through it all we continue to depend on and praise our Lord for He will see us through. At our staff meeting today I took a brief look at Psalm 27. I have found verse 5 to be especially comforting:

“For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.”
That verse best describes our mindset as we move forward.

Speaking of moving forward, below are our first steps in response to Gustav’s possible landfall:

Our evacuation plan has already been put into action:
o People are being called to see if they need help in evacuating.
o Those that need our help will be evacuated on Sunday after our service if the city declares an evacuation.
o For those not evacuating with us, we have as many destinations and contact numbers as possible so that we can minister to them if needed.
o All of our office and ministry needs (computers, files, check books etc…) have been packed up and are ready to be loaded.
o All of our facilities have been prepared for the potential storm.
· Our tentative plans are to go to either Jackson, MS or Birmingham, AL depending on the storm track and resources available at each site.
· Village Bible Church has agreed to help us once again as our secondary site as needed.
· If the event is a catastrophic event, we will be helping people for 2 weeks to put into place their personal evacuation plan. We will not be setting up community as we did with Katrina.

As for what can you do:
o Pray, pray, pray and pray
o Gustav would dissipate and not be a threat to anyone.
o For the emotional spiritual well being of the people of New Orleans. This is a very dramatic event in light of Katrina and how many have not dealt with the effects from that
o For wisdom and discernment for the staff as we minister to people
o For strength and endurance.
o For city, state and federal government that they would respond in a proper and timely manner
o For God’s peace for those of us dealing with all of this

Consider a gift to help us in the evacuating of people. Please use our on line giving link on the website.

Our method of communication will be my blog site. This is where to keep informed.

Once again, thank you for your concern and prayers. God is the “high rock” that we will run to and depend on.

In HIS Grip,
Pastor John