Monday, June 24
The Presbytery of Mississippi
In Genesis we read about Joseph’s brothers selling him as a slave. This was an evil act, but from it God created great good. Natural disasters can be like that—terrible and devastating, but God can bring forth great and good things during such times.
When Haiti was struck by a magnitude 6.5 earthquake in January 2010, folks in the Presbytery of Mississippi knew they had to help. After all, they had been on the receiving end of a tremendous outpouring of help following the devastation brought by Hurricane Katrina to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. They could empathize with the people of Haiti and knew how important it was to reach out to the victims of this terrible natural disaster. Working through Haiti Outreach Ministries, George and Linda Bates, former disaster recovery coordinators for the Presbytery of Mississippi, scheduled volunteer teams from all over the U.S. and Canada to go to Haiti.
One of these teams was a medical group led by Dr. Chuck Borum, a ruling elder from First Presbyterian in Natchez. Chuck’s team worked at a clinic in Cité Soliel, one of the hardest-hit neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince. The days were long and the conditions challenging, but Chuck’s group ministered to over 450 patients during that week, people who would not have been able to receive medical treatment anywhere else.
First Presbyterian of Pascagoula sent its first team about four months after the quake and has regularly sent teams since then to construct houses for displaced families in the Cité Soliel and Repatriote neighborhoods. As the Katrina disaster recovery wound down in Mississippi, the presbytery sent a 15-passenger van, a three-ton truck, and a dump trailer to Haiti Outreach Ministries to help in their recovery work.
Yes, Katrina was devastating, but the Presbytery of Mississippi thanks God for the lessons learned and for the opportunities to share its loaves with the people of Haiti because of the experience.
The Presbytery of Mississippi’s 36 congregations have 2,871 total members.
Let us join in prayer for:
Let us pray
Heavenly Father, in all that we say and do, may we reflect Christ’s love for all people everywhere. Help us all to look beyond our differences and concentrate on the commonalities we share as your children. Amen.