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Oklahoma City church network forges ahead

Oklahoma City area churches continue to join a new ecumenical disaster relief network aimed at effectively serving and providing long-term aid to disaster victims.
by Carla Hinton Modified: June 21, 2013 at 4:02 pm •  Published: June 22, 2013
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Oklahoma City area churches continue to join a new ecumenical disaster relief network aimed at effectively serving and providing long-term aid to disaster victims.

Stephen Brewer, associate director of the Austin Disaster Relief Network, said his Texas-based organization's recent training session for metro-area pastors and church leaders drew more than 300 people from more than 50 Oklahoma churches and ministries.

“I think so many churches in the city have been desiring to work together but not necessarily knowing how to do it,” he said recently. “We are absolutely amazed at God's provision.”

I told about the new disaster relief network being formed with Oklahoma churches in a June 8 story. Brewer and other representatives of the Austin network arrived in the metro area immediately after the May 19-20 tornadoes that left a trail of devastation in several areas of Oklahoma.

Brewer said he told Oklahoma clergy leaders that organizing themselves as a network and “adopting” families to assist long-term is an effective way to make a difference in the lives of disaster victims.

And the Austin leaders know this first hand.

In my previous story I said the Austin network formed to help victims of the 2011 Bastrop, Texas, wildfires. However, Daniel Geraci, the organization's director, said the network was an idea that came to him in 2005, shortly after he had talked to another clergyman about more than 6,000 New Orleans families who fled to Austin in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

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by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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