Please read this letter written by CSI Medical Director, Dr. Marcus Cobb who recently visited Louisiana. His firsthand account tells of the overwhelming needs that the news media has all but ignored. CSI is still at work in Louisiana and we need your help. You can still donate to help.
August 31, 2016
Dear Apostolic Believer,
The Baton Rouge flood situation is MUCH worse than you thought. How do I know this? I recently returned from Baton Rouge after touring the area with some of my fellow Board Members from Compassion Services International. Our annual meeting was originally scheduled to be held in St. Louis, but at the last minute we changed the location to Baton Rouge so we could join our contingency there “on the ground” and tour the area for ourselves. Right after the floods, we sent emergency funds to several churches, so they could address immediate needs of their buildings. Why was this important? Because on the weekend of August 11-13 Baton Rouge received more rain in SIX HOURS (more than 40 inches) than the State of California has had since 2012.
Look around your own home. Look in your living room, family room, your bedrooms, bathrooms and your children’s play room. Look at your sofa, chairs & tables. Look at your carpeting & your wood or vinyl flooring. Look at your kitchen appliances, and the contents of your cabinets. In fact, look at everything that rests on the floor. Now, imagine that all of a sudden, there is four feet of water in your home. Everything on the floor, and anything that doesn’t rest higher than four feet above the floor is suddenly and completely submerged under water. “I have a basement”, you say. Well, the homes in Baton Rouge don’t have a basement. Most everything is on the first floor…which is why the contents of more than 100,000* homes, businesses and churches in Baton Rouge were completely destroyed by the “100 year flood” they just experienced.
Why wasn’t the severity of this devastation reported by the media? My personal opinion is that between Hillary, Trump and the Summer Olympics, we were already “flooded” with news in the middle of August. Also, unlike Hurricanes Katrina & Sandy, this was not a named storm, nor was there dramatic film footage of a bursting levy to capture our imagination.
Instead, there is house after house, on street after street, in neighborhood after neighborhood with their entire contents piled up at the curb—because it was all completely and totally ruined. Well, insurance will cover the lion’s share of their losses, right? Wrong!! Many of the affected homes, businesses and churches were in a “flood zone”, which meant that they couldn’t buy flood insurance because insurance companies refuse to offer it to such high risk customers, or the price of insurance was cost-prohibitive. Meanwhile, those who are NOT in a flood zone didn’t have flood insurance because…well, they’re not in a flood zone. Are you starting to get the picture? CSI has been on the scene of many natural disasters over the last three decades; but never before have we seen so many Apostolic Believers affected by a single disaster.
COMPASSION—“sorrow for the sufferings or trouble of another or others, accompanied by an urge to help”. That dictionary definition of COMPASSION is exactly what is called for at this momentous time, and will be needed for many months to come as our brethren in and around Baton Rouge endeavor to rebuild and replace their belongings. What they most need right now is MONEY—whatever you can spare, both now and in the weeks & months to come. They also need skilled (and unskilled) workers to volunteer in the many churches that are trying to meet the needs of their parishioners, while also tending to the church building and the parsonage.
Folks, the need is GREAT. Every little bit helps. It is time for God’s People to step up and practice the Golden Rule. If it were your home; your business; your church that I have been describing, what would you wish for readers of this letter to do? We are asking you to do just that. In Jesus’ Name.
Please visit www.compassionservices.org to donate today.
Dr. Marcus Cobb – Medical Director
Compassion Services International