Tuesday, March 5, 2024

‘Really Apocalyptic’: After Horrific Hawaii Wildfires, ‘This Is the Beauty of the Body of Christ’

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One of the leaders of a Christian organization that trains and mobilizes churches to serve their communities is describing the post-wildfire situation in Maui, Hawaii, as “really apocalyptic.”

Listen to the latest episode of CBN’s Quick Start podcast:

Despite the chaos following the disastrous flames that torched thousands of acres of land and killed at least 111 people, Todd Lamphere, vice president of government relations for CityServe, says he believes God is still moving in mighty ways.

“We’re seeing hope,” Lamphere told CBN’s Faithwire. “We’re seeing God’s people mobilized; we’re seeing God’s people activated; we’re seeing God’s people doing what God’s people do best, and that is being the hands and feet of Jesus.”

He said people are loving others and trying to help amid the intense “hurt and devastation.” Lamphere, who has been around many disaster zones, described the somber nature of seeing cars and houses destroyed, with people displaced and homeless in the process.

Meanwhile, much uncertainty abounds.

“A ton of people [are] still waiting to hear about their loved ones,” he said.

Watch Lamphere explain:

CityServe is working with local churches to distribute 250,000 prepackaged meals, with other resources — including cleaning supplies and toiletries — on the way.

“This is the beauty of the body of Christ and the faith organizations that do disaster response,” Lamphere said, noting the effort is being undertaken by numerous well-known Christian relief groups and churches who are coming together to assist.

In addition to immediate needs like food, clothing, and housing, there will also be long-term essentials people will require after the wildfires.

“The good part of a town destroyed and so it’s going to take a good while for all of this to come together,” he said, explaining CityServe’s role in the process. “We’re here to resource the local church long-term so that they can become the hero in the community.”

Lamphere used the Apostle Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 12 to underscore the importance of the church stepping up to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

“When Paul talks about ‘when one member suffers, all the members suffer with it’ … that’s really the beauty of the body of Christ … having that empathy,” he said. “It’s not sympathy. We’re not here to feel sorry for them; we’re here to feel their pain.”

Find out more about CityServe’s efforts here.

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