10 Years This Week
10 years ago, there were buildings that stood and people that lived in Mississippi and the Gulf Coast region, that are no longer there.
As a church, we wanted to reach out and help the area. Dennis Cho was the leader of that first team, and I thank him and the rest of the SGV leadership that chose Biloxi MS as the site for our efforts. Through the years, people would often refer to us as the "Katrina" team, and sometimes mistakenly, the New Orleans Team, for we served those first seven years in Biloxi MS.
Biloxi didn't seem to get as much press as New Orleans. But the damage there was much more sweeping and bore the brunt of the storm itself. The damage in New Orleans was often the result of failing man-made levees. We would see firsthand how the shallow waters of Biloxi's picturesque Gulf Coast would provide little shelter from a category 5 hurricane. Homes and enormous structures were moved blocks from their foundations.
Since that time, we sent over 10 teams to the area, and then later expanded to other areas of service, including Oklahoma and New Jersey.
We started this blog so that we could document our efforts and what we learned along the way. We didn't realize some of the side experiences would be creating life long friends, saying goodbye to others, a better understanding and affection for Mississippi, and the wedding of two Habitat staff members.
To this day, people (and even team members) call us the "Katrina" team. It's a humbling reminder of what happened 10 years ago this week.
A dark moment for so many, allowed us to find and be part of the light to the area. We just wanted to point people towards hope and faith in God, in a difficult time.