Building up their faith: Baptist men's group ministering to flood victims



Article Image Alt Text

Contributed/Pastor Randy Taylor, FBC Granite Shoals
First Baptist Church Granite Shoals member Dave Smith stops to pray with two victims of the flooding which occurred on Tuesday, Oct. 16 resulting in the damage of over 100 homes in Burnet and Llano Counties. Smith and many other members of the congregation assisted families in recovery efforts after the flooding, helping each resident through every stage of the process.






By Savanna Gregg
Staff Writer

In the face of disaster, victims rely on faith to remain strong and face the adversity head-on. After the Hill Country flood on Tuesday, Oct. 16, members of the Granite Shoals Faith Alliance and the Texas Baptist Men's group stepped up to instill that faith in members of their community and help many families back on their feet.

Pastor Randy Taylor of First Baptist Church Granite Shoals, one of the drop-off locations for supplies donations following the flood, described some of their group's relief efforts as faith-based support for those who need it.

We believe here that Jesus gave us two commandments: love God with all your heart, and love your neighbor,” Taylor said. “That's what we are trying to do. There are people that don't even know where to start and we're trying to help.

This effort is not just First Baptist Church,” Taylor added. “All of the churches in Granite Shoals are combining in this effort. There are a lot of people helping out, but we are just the center of it.”

FBC Granite Shoals was designated as a shelter Tuesday night after families were forced from their homes to escape the rising water. After the second night, residents were able to return home and Taylor said his group turned to “salvage mode.”

Volunteers with Granite Shoals Faith Alliance and Texas Baptist Men's group have been with residents from the beginning of the clean-up process, helping them through the excruciating first glance of their homes filled with dirty water and staying by their sides through it all.

We still have people that are coming home and seeing it for the first time,” Taylor said on Saturday. “They are just devastated at how much damage there is.

The story about the people in our community coming together to help other people is so awesome,” he added. “That's where it's at.”

Other members of the Texas Baptist Men's group flew in Monday morning to assist in the clean-up, bringing drums of mold killer to eliminate one of the dangerous effects of flooding. Taylor emphasized that residents and volunteers should be mindful of the dangers of mold when cleaning out their houses.

Many people think that if they just bleach their house that will clean it up, but people don't think that because of the sewer backup, the water is very contaminated and black mold is going everywhere,” Taylor said.

Every bathtub has to be taken out, cabinets need to be demolished, anything that got wet has to come out,” he added. “If the water hit it, it's bad. Everyone of these houses have to be completely gutted, dried out, and sprayed.”

Taylor said that this type of disaster may be good for the economy as contractors will soon be hired to rebuild homes, but right now many people are just here to help.

We have some of the best contractors in the world right here in the Hill Country, and we've got a lot of people out here who are not even letting people know they are contractors and they are just helping,” Taylor said. “Right now, people need help.”

FBC Granite Shoals remains a collection point for supplies donations, and Taylor said that a need for plastic totes has arisen as residents are able to salvage bits and pieces of their lives and are in need of storage. Any community members who have cleaning supplies or these plastic totes are asked to bring them to the church.

Bring them to the church, and if no one is here, my number is posted on the door to call,” Taylor said. “If we are not here and you have donations, we will be there immediately. We are making sure every donation coming into the church right now is going out to the community.”

Taylor also pointed out that clothes donations are being accepted at the Marble Falls Goodwill location.

Taylor and his congregation of volunteers remain hopeful as they work together to make the recovery process a little bit easier for their fellow Highland Lakes residents.

We are Texas strong, and doing good,” Taylor said. “We are just trying to share the love of Jesus.”

Supplies donations are still being collected at First Baptist Church Granite Shoals. Residents and volunteers are in need of bottled water and Gatorade, cleaning supplies such as gloves, bleach and bleach-based cleaners, laundry soap, utility rags, paper towels, wipes, and hand sanitizer; tools including shovels, rakes, wheel barrows, large fans, work gloves, buckets, and sorting bins; commercial-sized garbage bags; and gift cards to home good stores such as Home Depot, Lowes, Walmart, and H-E-B.

FBC Granite Shoals is located at 505 S. Phillips Ranch Road, Granite Shoals. For more information, call the church at 512-755-5217.

Other collection points for supplies are First United Methodist Church Marble Falls, 1101 Bluebonnet Drive, and The Church at Horseshoe Bay, 600 Hi Ridge Road. Water and Gatorade are also being accepted at Lakeshores Church, 700 US 281, Marble Falls.

Rate this article: 
Average: 3.5 (2 votes)