Wash, Rinse, Treat

by Trish Duggan, OPC Disaster Response Communications Coordinator

It seems almost counter-intuitive to be using water in the first phases of cleaning out an area devastated by flood, but it’s a necessary step—actually, a really, a crucial one. You can’t close up a wall when mold is present or has the ability to provide a hospitable environment for it. Crews at Neon Reformed OPC have been busy using power washers to clean as much dirt, debris and residuals from the walls of the church. It’s a process, one that can’t be skipped over. Once the water from the power washing dries, enzymes are sprayed in an attempt to eliminate mold growth. Neon Reformed OPC member, Dr. Luke Edwards, said, “cleaning the church is like debulking a tumor—you can get 90% of it, but you won’t get it all!”

The inbox of our volunteer coordinator, Jane Robinson, has been flooded (no pun intended) with offers of loving help, from all over the country. It’s amazing to see the the brothers and sisters in this denomination come together at a time of need and the depth of resource and sacrifice during desperate times. The visible church is never so obvious.

The Presbytery of the Southeast’s Mike Cloy, elder at Landis OPC in Marion, NC has led the charge (along with church officers) for this effort, having known and loved, along with his PSE brothers, this church in Neon. The church family in Neon is resilient, loves the Lord and lives by humble means. This past week has taken what little they had, but it hasn’t shaken their faith.

The last few days have been hard, even for the strongest. “I’ve served in disaster areas in Central and South America and have five years experience in combat zones around the world and the destruction I saw in Neon reminds me of that level of devastation,” Mike Cloy reflects. Mud, debris and possessions line the streets, almost as far as the eye can see. It’s almost impossible to describe, and photos really can’t do it justice. It makes obvious that the hope is in the promises of God.

Jane Robinson, a dear friend of the Neon OPC family, is beginning to schedule teams to come in groups of up to eight to arrive in Neon starting the middle of next week. The process of balancing the “hurry-up and wait” can be hard to manage, but the mutual love for the Lord makes even the most anxious, understanding. We are all working to the glory of the Lord.

So, what can you do? Don’t forget about Neon. It’s hard when the headlines begin to fade, the news crews move on, and life seems to go on as usual. The entire community of Neon needs you to pray. Prayerfully consider how you can help. Are you an adventurous type, and want to get your hands dirty? There’s a place for you. Can’t figure a way to get to Neon, at least not soon? Then pray, and consider a donation. But most of all, pray. The Lord has, and will continue to provide through the faithful members of His church.

More to come. Stay tuned.


Looking for OPC Short-Term Missions? Visit the OPCSTM website

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