In the wake of Hurricane Ida, I reached out to the GCI pastors in Louisiana and Mississippi. The response has been minimal, but I was able to reach two of our leaders.
Anthony Rice, our pastor in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, LA, sent this note:
I wanted to give you an update on the aftermath of hurricane Ida. I’ve been able to contact most all of the members in the Baton Rouge and Lafayette area. Lafayette received only minor winds. However, Baton Rouge was much closer to the eye. Most of our members are still without power and internet. Only two suffered damage. Thankfully neither one was significant to their homes. We are hoping to hold church services at both locations this weekend. Since the Baton Rouge church has power, many will appreciate being in an air conditioned space! Praise God!
I also spoke with Mike Horchak, the retired GCI pastor in Tickfaw, LA (just north of New Orleans). We lost phone connection several times as communications are still sketchy at this point. He and Pam are OK. They rode out the storm in their home, which was hit with 120 mph winds and 25 inches of rain. He said it was awful. The storm was much more powerful and scary than he anticipated even after going through hurricane Katrina. Two large oak trees fell in their yard but the house is fine. The neighborhood is full of downed trees, power lines and cell towers.
No word yet on former Tickfaw members living in the area, but he will be reaching out.
Lord, have mercy on our GCI members and those in our human family who are experiencing the devastation of this storm. Compel the church to be helpers and loving neighbors in the recovery effort. We trust you, Jesus. Amen.
With you in Christ,
GCI Regional Director, Southeast US