Several SBTC DR units already deployed after Hurricane Beryl

MATAGORDA, Texas (BP) — Disaster Relief (DR) units from the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention (SBTC) have already deployed even as now-Tropical Storm Beryl makes its way northeast along the eastern edge of Texas and parts of Louisiana.

Beryl made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane near Matagorda around 4:30 a.m. Monday (July 8), about 95 miles southwest of Houston. The storm pummeled coastal areas like Galveston as well as the outskirts of Houston, America’s fourth-largest metro area. Nearly 3 million people are without electricity.

“We have one mass care feeding unit, two shower trailers, one quick response feeding unit and one chainsaw unit mobilized,” said SBTC DR director Scottie Stice in an email to Baptist Press (BP). “However, we are less than 12 hours from landfall. More units will be activated.”

Houston has experienced flash flooding Monday after several inches of rain, with more expected. Flash flood warnings continue for Houston and Galveston.

At least two people were killed in southeast Texas by trees felled by the storm. Prior to its arrival in the U.S., Beryl caused widespread damage in Mexico and the Caribbean, killing at least 12. At one point, the storm reached Category 5 strength.

DR resources including a mass feeding unit, a chainsaw unit and a laundry unit are heading to three locations today — Wharton, Galveston County and Spring, Texas. More locations will probably be added in the coming days, Stice said.

The mass feeding unit in Wharton will prepare meals that will be delivered by the Salvation Army.

“We will be here to serve so long as we have financial and volunteer resources available,” Stice said. “I anticipate requesting out-of-state DR teams.”

Stice urged Southern Baptists to pray for “God to be in the details.”

“We have logistical and volunteer needs already,” he said. “Pray for our volunteers as they meet needs of survivors. Lastly, pray with us as the gospel is shared with the Texas Gulf Coast communities.

“I wish to thank Southern Baptists that have already sacrificed so much to get us to the field,” Stice continued. “SBTC DR is supported by CP, state mission offerings, and designated gifts. Thank you, Southern Baptists, for your prayer and financial investment in Southern Baptist Disaster Relief.”

(EDITOR’S NOTE — Laura Erlanson is managing editor of Baptist Press.)

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