Faith-Based Groups Bring Relief to Disaster
In our world today, there’s little doubt that faith-based groups sometimes receive criticism for following the Bible and seeking converts. That news sometimes is overshadowed by the real work of these faith-based organizations.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, USA Today (September 10, 2017) reported on a little-known fact in their article “Faith Groups Provide the Bulk of Disaster Recovery, in Coordination with FEMA.” In fact, Brock Long, FEMA administrator, encouraged the public to make hurricane relief donations via the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster. Approximately 75% of the organizations that are part of that alliance are faith based.
Two such groups include headliners like Samaritan’s Purse and Convoy of Hope. Samaritan’s Purse is an evangelical aid group run by Franklin Graham. Samaritan’s Purse is an “on-the-ground” group running chainsaws and debris removal. Samaritan’s has already responded to 20 disasters this year. Similarly, Convoy of Hope is a nondenominational Christian organization. And even before Hurricane Irma made landfall, they had three trailer trucks stocked with food, water and sanitary supplies. In major disasters, Convoy sets up feeding stations at FEMA’s request.
Indeed, it should not be surprising that faith-based groups provide an astounding amount of relief like this. The call of Christ was for mercy and compassion, at the same time that he called for his followers to share the Good News.