Christian Ministries Aid Thousands of Californians Affected by Wildfires

Multiple churches have joined in the efforts to provide wildfire relief.

With California suffering deadly wildfires, some of the worst in the state’s history, a number of churches have stepped in to help Californians devastated by the wayward flames . It is estimated that a minimum of 62 individuals have died due to burns. Among them, 59 are due to the “Camp Fire” located in the state's northern areas. The blaze was spread by heavy winds coupled by dry weather. The Camp Fire also burned down 140,000 acres and destroyed more than 8,500 structures.

Paradise, a small retirement community located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, is located approximately 140 miles to the north of Sacramento city. Christy Presswood, a Chico Church of Christ member, described the sun as an orange ball, due to the smoke from the burning. The church is located 15 miles west of the retirement community in Paradise. The number of victims could rise, as the list of missing persons is in the hundreds. Presswood concurred with this hypothesis. She said a number of elderly people live in trailer parks and it will be impossible for them to escape the blaze.

The Chico congregation, made of about 110 members are working in tandem with the Tennessee headquarters of the Churches of Christ Disaster Relief Effort. The team will offer aid to people who require it. The list includes a few evacuated members of the church who continue to wait to see whether their homes survived.

About 500 miles away to the south is the Woolsey Fire. This blaze came horrifyingly close to Malibu's Pepperdine University on the night of November 9 and during the morning of November 10. 435 structures have been destroyed with almost 100,000 acres burned.

Other ministries have sent aid to California. A team from the Convoy of Hope's Disaster Services announced on November 9 they had brought supplies like blankets, food, and water to their Chico facility. Jeff Nene, a member of the Convoy of Hope, said they have supplies due to their response to Redding Fire, another disaster which happened a few months back. Even churches far away from the fire are trying to help. One distant church is the Newsong LA Covenant Church, led by Pastor Adam Edgerly. The Covenant church will send donations to those churches present in the vicinity.

Resources
  • The Christian Post
  • The Christ Chronicle
  • World Religion News
  • CBS News

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