Update as of 09-12-2017: This relief fund also benefits victims of Hurricane Irma.
A letter from Fr. De Freeman
August 31, 2017
Greetings to you all in the name of Christ Jesus our Lord.
I would imagine at this point one would have to be the proverbial ostrich with its head in the sand to not have seen or heard accounts of the tragedy that continues to unfold in Southeast Texas and Western Louisiana. Many of you will no doubt be moved with a desire to help and may even be formulating your own plans for how our parish can assist. Compassionate hearts are wonderful, but at this point it would be foolish for us to attempt to send teams of people into an already chaotic and dangerous environment. In an effort to maximize our potential assistance to people on a more intimate and local level, I am asking for you to join me in the following initial course of action:
1) Pray for those who have been affected.
2) St. James will set aside $5,000 from our currently budgeted funds for Outreach in order to provide assistance to those in need who were affected by the Hurricane in Southeast Texas.
3) In conjunction with this action, we will be accepting further monetary assistance from everyone who feels compelled to provide assistance. Donations can be made online HERE. After you are prompted to enter an amount, click "next" and you will be asked where to direct your donation and you can simply select “Hurricane Harvey Relief.” You may also bring your donation to the church office, or include an offering in any of the collections on Sunday, Wednesday or Thursday worship services. Please make sure to mark your check or cash (envelope) with “Hurricane Harvey Relief.”
4) We are beginning to establish a relationship with a church, or group of churches, in the areas that were hit hardest by the flooding and the destruction- not necessarily in the Houston area. Our rationale here is that after experiencing Hurricanes Ivan and Katrina, we all understand that media coverage is often focused on the larger metropolitan area of Houston, but there are many people in smaller outlying communities that will have been devastated as well, and not have the benefit of national media attention. Without receiving the widespread attention, we believe these areas may be overlooked to some extent in the outpouring of help, and thus we can make a difference.
5) We will continue this relationship with this church or group of churches over the next many months in order to provide ongoing assistance with cards, needed and desired items, prayers, and even sending teams to assist with removing sheetrock, rebuilding, etc., for short missions.
While we are not large enough to help everyone who has suffered loss, we can make a difference, especially if we focus our efforts. St. Paul’s Daphne will be partnering with us in this endeavor, and we have also invited other Episcopal Churches from Baldwin County to join us as we move forward. May you always know your blessings.
In Christ's Joy and Love,