Building short-term teams to continue the restoration process in the Gulf, post Hurricane Katrina.

By January 17, 2006

USA (MNN)–Young Life is looking to build short-term service teams this summer to Mississippi.

The First Presbyterian Church of Ocean Springs, Mississippi sustained significant damage from Hurricane Katrina. The main sanctuary had minimal water damage and they have been worshiping in it, but the first floor of the main fellowship building was completely submerged.

This level contained their children’s Sunday school rooms, nursery, and an in-house Montessori school. With the damages so significant, it was better to call the area a complete loss and start over.

The youth facility was also severely flooded, and all of its contents are gone. The manse, home to the pastor, his wife and three small children was also flooded and they lost their personal belongings.
Many of their congregation also lost their homes and everything they owned. As many as 30 church families lost their homes entirely. 8 of the 12 elder’s homes were completely destroyed. An additional 40 families suffered severe flooding.

Approximately 80 percent of the church family has been affected in a significant way. Most of these families did not have flood insurance as it was not recommended and this level of storm was so unexpected. Their home owners insurance is not covering these losses caused by the hurricane.

Service projects may also include the surrounding community. Teams will focus mostly on building and renovating the facilities lost in the hurricane. There will be painting, light construction and a few landscaping projects.

The vision of service will be to support this church as they work toward being a source of hope and healing in the Ocean Springs community.

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