Thousands in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama were told to evacuate their homes this week as Hurricane Isaac made its way toward the Gulf Coast.
The Category 1 hurricane made landfall early Wednesday morning and is expected to continue hitting the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico with rains and damaging winds. According to reports, the storm is already causing major flooding and could bring record-breaking rainfall in some areas before it is over. So far, it has killed at least 29 people and caused widespread flooding in Haiti.
"We don't know what this week will bring," says Jack Munday, Director of the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team, which is gearing up for possible deployment. "But we do know that God loves each and every person in the Gulf Coast."
While winds from Isaac have been clocked at 80 mph, experts say the biggest concern presently is the pace at which the storm is moving. With Isaac moving as slow as 6 mph, affected areas could be hit for 36 to 48 hours by heavy rains that could cause devastating floods. At times, the storm has been almost completely stationary, dumping its heavy rains on a single spot, reported The Washington Post.
In response to Hurricane Isaac, groups including the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team, The Salvation Army, and World Vision are preparing to launch a multi-state disaster response effort.
“Once Isaac makes landfall, our team is ready to get immediate relief supplies to families and children who need them most,” says Phyllis Freeman, World Vision’s Domestic Disaster Director.
"When a disaster like Katrina strikes, we go in the Name of Jesus Christ, put our arms around those who are suffering, and tell them of God's grace and strength to see them through their trials," adds Franklin Graham, President of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
NRB members are encouraging the Christian community to pray for the children, families, and communities in the path of the storm; pray that the damage would be minimal; and pray that those impacted by the storm would find the help they require.
Hurricane Isaac’s landfall coincides with the seventh anniversary of Katrina, the deadliest and most destructive Atlantic hurricane of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season.
Published: August 29, 2012