Convoy Brings Hope to City of Joplin
Convoy of Hope, a Christian disaster response ministry, is spearheading relief efforts for families victimized by the vicious tornado that destroyed approximately 30 per cent of the city of Joplin, Missouri.
"Thousands of survivors in Joplin are hurting today," says Hal Donaldson, President of the Springfield, Missouri-based ministry. "Some have lost loved ones; thousands have lost their homes, posessions, and businesses. It's heartbreaking, but it also provides an opportunity for the nation to come alongside the residents of Joplin to give them hope."
As of Friday, Convoy of Hope had delivered nearly 500,000 pounds of food, water, and emergency relief supplies to the Joplin community from its World Distribution Center Warehouse in Springfield. Convoy of Hope is also delivering tents, cots, blankets, camp stoves, lanterns, and propane donated by Bass Pro Shops in Springfield.
"The outpouring of support has been phenomenal," Donaldson says. "We want to thank all the corporations that are donating truckloads of supplies and everyone making financial contributions. This is what keeps our trucks rolling and ensuring that the people of Joplin receive the help they need to get through this traumatic episode."
NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray, a native of Joplin, is also encouraging support of the Convoy of Hope disaster response effort. McMurray's racing team affixed the Convoy of Hope logo and the words "Joplin, MO" to his Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Marine race car that competed in Sunday's Coca-Cola Sprint 600 NASCAR race.
"I think it's really hard for people who see all the pictures to know what the town used to look like," says McMurray. The NASCAR driver says that not only was the house he grew up in destroyed in the tornado, but the entire neighborhood he lived in was taken out.
Convoy of Hope continues to work through churches and volunteer teams to meet the needs of those who are struggling to put life back together. The ministry is using the site of the Faith Assembly of God Church in Joplin as a temporary base of operations.
The church building at Faith Assembly was severely damaged in the tornado, and services are being held under a large tent on the parking lot. "People tell me our church is gone," said Pastor Larry Griffin. "But I tell them it's not gone. It's right here under this tent."
You can support the Convoy of Hope effort by donating online through their website at this link:
Convoy of Hope
You can also send a $10 donation to Convoy of Hope by texting CONVOY to 50555.
While we rarely agree with President Barack Obama and his perspective on life, we are grateful for the excellent Scripture-inspired message he shared at the memorial service at Missouri Southern State University on Sunday.
The President quoted from 2 Corinthians 4:9: "We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed."
He concluded with lyrics from the song "Amazing Grace:" "Through many dangers, toils, and snares I have already come; 'Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far and Grace will lead me home. Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, and mortal life shall cease, I shall possess within the veil, a life of joy and peace."
The President concluded the recitation by saying: "May Grace guide the people of Joplin home." If there is any community in this state and nation which has long been guided by God's Grace, it's Joplin, Missouri. We are thankful that the President recognizes that that is what makes Joplin great.