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UPDATES: NZ Bear, Canal Street Presbyterian, and The Matching of Need with Ability

Sunday, September 4, 2005  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt
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Here’s my World Magazine column from the new issue. It’s emphasis is on the long haul.

NZ Bear’s running total of contributions to disaster relief from the blogburst is at just under $790,000. Perhaps it will be able to cross the seven figure mark by the end of the long weeend.

One of the relief efforts I am supporting –assistance to Canal Street Presbyterian Church in the heart of New Orleans– got easier when the church’s webmaster was able to add a PayPal button on the church’s website and because the church established an address outside of New orleans where it can receive donations. That address is:

Canal Street Presbyterian Church
P. O. Box 3459
Suwanee, GA 30024

Other PCUSA churches have begun to respond to the needs of the 140 PCUSA congregations in the recovery region. Just this afternoon I heard from Blogotional’s John Schroeder that he is asking his PCUSA congregation to consider adopting a church in the impacted region. Here’s the comprehensive list of PCUSA churches in the region. With enough John Schroeders and Ed Brenegars, the matching of the needy with the willing within the PCUSA could be accomplished in a week.

Some other responses:

I am the pastor of the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Long Beach. I have been trying to contact the Long Beach Presbyterian Church near Biloxi (actually in the city of Long Beach). No success thus far, but we are praying.

God grant us all grace!

Another:

I took your advice and made a donation to Samaritan’s Purse. We also are supporters of Young Life. Anyway, I love your idea of churches partnering with other churches. I am heading out (on my own) to Baton Rouge tomorrow. I’m being met at the airport by someone from First Pres. Church of Baton Rouge and I will spend 2 weeks with them, helping in any way that I can. I’d like for our church to partner with them but I’m not an elder or a deacon. We called one of our assistanct ministers today to tell her about my trip to BR but she has not returned our phone call. I will give you our church information and hopefully get in touch with someone on Tues. Here’s the info:

First Presbyterian Church
P.O. Box 789
70 Union Street North
Concord, NC 28025
704-788-2100

Another:

I am a Presbyterian (USA) pastor in a church outside of Chicago. I read your webpage with great interest….Since I head up missions at our church, I am going to try to partner with one of the churches in the affected area. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

Please keep sending me updates, and I will note partnerships when the have come to fruition. For those outside the PCUSA, while each congregation can act on its own to design its own relief effort, no individual can commit a congregation to a particular project. These e-mailers are moving at the speed of light for Presbyterians, and I hope there are thousands more like them.

The prototype portal that NZ Bear is developing to accomplish the matching of needs and abilites is awesome, and I think pathbreaking. He needs some help. If you are a techie who’s heart is moved by the scale of the misery, contact him. If, like me, you have trouble spelling “code,” consider a financial sponsorship of the service. Neither NZ or I will take a dollar from this effort, but there’s plenty of cost involved as it grows. As with the blogburst, it would be great to have a tech company lead the way.

NZ has also established an e-mail list to keep interested parties up to speed on the progress of his portal development.

Memo to MSM: I know many of you are interesting in settling once and for all who can be blamed for sinking the Titanic, but how about some attention for NZ’s undertaking? He’s already done more for disaster relief thanmost dailies, and if he can figure out the matching project, he’ll be responsible for the alleviation of the suffering of millions. Give him a hand.

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