Kentucky Baptists spring into action in wake of tornadoes

Originally published at Western Recorder –www.westernrecorder.org

Mayfield—Area churches and Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers are pulling together to repair damage done by tornadoes on Tuesday, May 10, that tore through western Kentucky, splintering structures and homes in Trigg and Christian counties and leveling neighborhoods and a business in Graves County. Winds reached up to 140 mph., and 10 injuries were reported.

“We were watching the tornado from one of our offices upstairs in the church, and we could tell that it was close to the school and close to the hospital,” said Chad Lamb, pastor of His House Ministries in Mayfield.

“As soon as we saw that we jumped in a vehicle and took off that way. We’re just trying to make sure that we’re doing the thing we’re supposed to be doing, checking on the flock, taking care of the people and meeting needs wherever we could,” he added.

The damage, although devastating, could have been much worse. Graves County Sheriff Dewayne Redmon told Associated Press that he saw the tornadoes heading toward the school.

“We knew that it was going to get hit,” he said. “But there’s only one reason why we didn’t lose a bunch of kids’ lives … and that was because of God. He shifted that tornado right before it got to that school.”

In cooperation with other area churches, including First Baptist of Mayfield, which opened its facilities to house those displaced by the storms, His House Ministries has become a hub of relief efforts, working with the community and sheriff’s department.

As they went behind Bennet Motors, a car dealership that was virtually destroyed, Lamb said, “That is something I will never forget the rest of my life. It looked like something out of a movie, something that you would see in a mass disaster on television or somewhere else. Every home back there was literally leveled, like they were gone. We started trying to help. We were praying with people, just trying to meet a need.”

Many others churches are pulling together to help out. The morning after the tornadoes, Sinking Spring Baptist in Murray dropped off a truckload of supplies, clothes, shoes, blankets and non-perishables in Mayfield. They are volunteering their time to clean up, too.

Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers have been deployed to the area. Teams intend to help the approximately 30-40 homes that were impacted by assisting with tarping, chainsaw needs, providing chaplains and meeting various needs.

“I think it’s awesome,” Dennis Manley, Purchase Area Baptist Associaton’s director of missions, said of the cooperation he has seen. “We have churches that are spread out in three counties. Yet, it doesn’t matter. When there’s a need, it’s exciting to see the churches rally together to help.”

“It’s kind of where we are, churches helping churches, churches helping people,” he said.

To get involved in relief efforts through donation, visit http://www.hishouse.tv /tornadorelief. Groups seeking to get involved in relief efforts should contact the executive pastor of His House, Tony Adams. (WR)

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