“Today is a new day for Indiana Baptist!”, says Butch Porter, the new State Director of Indiana Disaster Relief. This sentiment is being echoed throughout our state as God begins to bring renewed energy and excitement to various ministries within the State Convention of Baptists in Indiana (SCBI). One of those ministries experiencing revitalization is our Indiana Disaster Relief ministry.
In September, SCBI renewed its commitment to Disaster Relief by hiring Butch Porter as the new full-time Disaster Relief Director and adding Disaster Relief as a focused piece of the new Hoosier Heartbeat for Missions and State Missions Offering. This is an exciting time to be a part of refreshed trainings, increased volunteer opportunities, and renewed vision for growth within the ministry.
Disaster Relief hosted its first training of 2022 at Vernon Baptist Church in Vernon in September. Soon after this training, Hurricane Ian hit Florida and we had two recovery teams deploy to First Baptist Church in Venice, Florida. The teams were led by volunteer coordinators Don Morris and Joe Fox. In November, a second introduction training was offered at Grace Baptist Church in Greenwood and a third recovery team responded to Cape Coral, Florida led by volunteer coordinator, Keith Royer.
This renewed energy in our Indiana Disaster Relief is being talked about outside of our state:
Mark Hinson the onsite coordinator for the North Carolina Baptist Convention said- “It was an honor to have Joe Fox and his team here at the NC recovery site in Florida. They are a great team and I really enjoyed them being here and honored to have met them.”
Gaylon Moss, Missouri Disaster Relief State Director shared this quote after he recently worked with our teams in Florida- “Missouri Baptists are grateful for the help, hope, and healing brought by Indiana Baptist Disaster Relief to assist Hurricane Ian survivors. Indiana Baptist Disaster Relief is on the move!”
Coy Webb, Crisis Response Director of SEND Relief says, “We are excited about the renewal of Indiana SBDR as they are vital partners in sharing the compassion of Christ to those suffering in the aftermath of disasters.”
We are already looking forward to next year! There are two more trainings scheduled for early in 2023. One will be on January 14th at Cornerstone Fellowship Church in Peru and the second will be on January 21st at Northwoods Church in Evansville. Join the excitement and plan to attend one of these trainings!
We are also excited to say that Indiana Disaster Relief is looking to resurrect the trainings for Chaplaincy, Feeding, Incident Command, and Shower/Laundry. We are looking for you to partner with us! In the following months we will be restructuring our trainings, starting with Blue Cap training, new manuals, regional Chainsaw and Flood Recovery trainings, and Chaplaincy trainings. We will also be updating our website and creating online registration and online training opportunities! We have long range plans to develop the Feeding ministry and purchase a (QRU) Quick Response Unit designed to respond in 3-5hrs with 3-5 persons for 3-5 days serving 300-500 meals per day.
The Disaster Relief team is already growing! We have named Denny Smith as Assistant State Director, Joe Fox as Flood Recovery Coordinator, Don Morris as Chainsaw Coordinator, and Chris Conrades as Ministry Assistant. Will you join the team? Will you consider how God might want to use you?
It is a new day for Disaster Relief in Indiana and an exciting time to get involved. Did you know that Disaster Relief is second to VBS in salvations in the nation? That is our ultimate ministry, and you can be a part of taking the gospel to the nations through Disaster Relief!
For more information or to get involved, contact Butch Porter at firstname.lastname@example.org.