This past summer was extremely difficult for many in our province. As many enjoyed vacation time with family, others struggled with displacement and devastation from fires. Many people’s lives were altered dramatically. At one point in September, there were 158 fires burning in BC at the same time. 2017 represented the largest total provincial area burned in a single fire season. Consequently, 2017 represented the largest number of evacuees in a fire season. The Cariboo and Kootenay regions experienced great hardship in so many areas. Jobs and businesses were lost. Families were forced to move. Homes were destroyed. Ultimately, lives were drastically changed.
Many men and women in our district churches stepped to the gap, donating over $60,000 to the CPD’s Emergency Relief Fund. Following God’s prompting, they sought to bring their resources to a hurting region. It was truly moving to witness profound generosity during a time of great sorrow, struggle, and pain.
Reaching out to our churches, our district lead team sought to resource first responders, churches, and partner agencies with the finances we have been entrusted with. Through much prayer and discernment, we have partnered with Samaritan’s Purse, sending them $60,000. They are actively involved in recovery and restoration work in the Cariboo region. They bring great expertise to these efforts. As an organization, Samaritan’s Purse seeks to network impacted people with the necessary recovery resources and their goal is to restore the whole person; emotionally, spiritually, psychologically, and physically. Speaking with John Clayton (Samaritan’s Purse Canada), he communicated stories of renewal and rebuilding. Displaced individuals are being given assistance in securing new housing. Cleanup efforts are happening throughout the affected area. Opportunities to proclaim the Gospel are everywhere.
“[Our] ultimate goal is to equip those impacted with the tools and knowledge to evaluate and understand their specific situation, leverage the help available using their own resources first, and then access other resources as the situation dictates – all in Jesus’ name.” John Clayton
Thank you for your generosity and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit’s prompting. Every few months we will bring a brief report, documenting some of the stories of restoration occurring. Please continue to pray for those who are still trying to adjust to a new normal. Pray for the churches and pastors in the affected areas – that they would have opportunities to minister and shepherd as God leads.