Building up others while rebuilding lives

Building up others while rebuilding lives

Building up others while rebuilding lives

A Christian humanitarian aid organization continues to minister to the physical and spiritual needs of tornado victims.

Last week's storms raked through the South, including Alabama, Georgia, and Kentucky. In response, Samaritan's Purse has dispatched teams and volunteers. Spokesman Leroy Wentz is in hard-hit Selma, Alabama. After assessing the situation, he says they plan to be there a while.

"We're seeing buildings, homes just totally destroyed, roofs off others, massive trees down all over the place," he reports. And with several power poles and lines down, "parts of the town still don't have power. Parts of town still are not accessible. They're still trying to get streets cleared out."

As for those affected, Wentz says the residents have mixed feelings.

"You have that resilient group that they've been there before, and they're going to tough it out and get through again -- then others that are just overwhelmed and totally in a state of what do I do next, and they're just in shock," he laments. "They've lost everything. They've lost their home, and everything about their normal life has been upended, and they don't know which way to turn."

Recovery efforts are still in the early stages, and Wentz says more volunteers are needed. Samaritan's Purse has counselors on hand encouraging the survivors to turn to Christ and depend on Him. That, he says, is the primary reason they work with disaster victims -- to build them up spiritually as they rebuild their lives.