In July, the town of Highland Falls, New York, was ravaged by destructive flooding after a season of historic rainfall. Rivers and streams were overwhelmed which, caused severe damage to homes within the community. Kristy Graham, host of On the Ground with Samaritan’s Purse, sits down with Edward Graham to talk about what they saw while in Highland Falls after the storm. They interacted face-to-face with Team Patriot volunteers, North American Ministries volunteers, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Rapid Response Team chaplains, and homeowners.
“It’s exhausting work. It’s tiring. It’s hot. It’s humid. You’re mucking out a home. You’re pulling mud and debris out. You’re sweating. And [volunteers] are smiling and laughing and they’re doing it all day. God brings us the best people.” – Edward Graham
Kristy also talked with Robert Bogus, the team leader for Team Patriot volunteers in Highland Falls. Team Patriot provides Operation Heal Our Patriots alumni with the opportunity to once again serve under a common goal. The support Bogus experienced through Team Patriot changed the course of his life.
“I was able to turn around, work on my social skills from being isolated. I was able to have the unit camaraderie being with fellow veterans.” – Robert Bogus
Our podcast correspondent, Gabbi, talked with Joe Bartel, a homeowner who painted the picture of what it was like when the floods began. Bartel was able to connect with Samaritan’s Purse shortly after the flooding and within a few days, he received a call that volunteers were coming to help. Joe expressed his deep gratitude for Team Patriot volunteers that he now considers family.
Gabbi also sat down with Amber, a volunteer who values listening and relating to homeowners during their time of need. She reminds homeowners that their identity is not in the material possessions they lost, but instead it is in Christ alone.
“It’s exciting to see opportunities for new beginnings for people who might have been leaning on that stability of a home or a job or all of the material things that we call our identity. Our identity isn’t the baseball card collection or the collection of pictures from vacations that we used to take. Our identity is in Christ alone.” – Amber Twentyman
Local churches and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Rapid Response Team chaplains also came alongside and ministered to members of the Highland Falls community. Kristy sat down with David and Debra Hicks, who are Rapid Response Team chaplains. The couple shared about why they serve and the impact of the Gospel in times of uncertainty.
Please pray for the 30 new believers in New York who gave their lives to Christ during this response. And pray for our U.S. Disaster Relief teams who are serving across the country right now.