Since the day after Hurricane Ian struck Florida, chaplains from the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team (BG-RRT) have been on the ground in hard-hit areas to pray and comfort people impacted by the storm. According to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, while Samaritan’s Purse fulfills work orders helping residents repair homes and clean debris, the chaplains are providing “emotional and spiritual care” as Floridians cope with the aftermath.
Since Hurricane Ian left a path of destruction and devastation in its wake, many of the people who have visited with chaplains are grateful to have survived, but still hold back tears from the loss and suffering they have witnessed. Some shared stories of near-death experiences and recalled seeing the heartbreaking sight of uprooted trees, flooded homes and streets, and people’s belongings lost to the water.
According to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, “as chaplains’ encouragement washed over the weary and anxious, many Floridians responded with a brief smile that appeared to be a glimmer of hope. And before they left, chaplains individually offered prayer to each passersby,’ adding, “if accepted, the chaplain reached across the table and took their hands. While the chaplains were lifting their burdens up to God, some residents blinked back tears or nearly broke down.”
With words of encouragement, the chaplains are giving Floridians much needed hope that they will get through this difficult time. Endless prayers for their healing and recovery are also helping Floridians as they turn to God for help. Chaplains will continue to provide a source of comfort for those impacted by the hurricane as Samaritan’s Purse continues to help pick up the pieces as communities recover and rebuild.