NEW ORLEANS, La.—Chris and Deb Hindal joined a mission team from Florida and one from New Jersey during the week of August 10-16 at the Berean Bible Church to help assess the current status and participate in rebuilding efforts. Even though the city has adopted the motto, “Return, Rebuild, and Rebirth,” the three-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina on August 29, 2008, is a depressing reminder that progress has been painfully slow. Chris joined the others in construction at two homes and at a deaf Baptist church. For several years Berean has established a presence at the William J. Fischer Elementary Charter School that services that Afro-American neighborhood. Church personnel have been asked to speak at school assemblies and have conducted Vacation Bible School in the school facility. Deb, along with others, assisted the teachers during their first week of school in painting, organizing materials, and transforming classrooms into a learning environment. Throughout the week they were reminded that their real mission was not about the physical work they were doing, but about the potential for building relationships with people. They were able to pass out Katrina “Why?” tracts and pray with individuals to encourage them in their distress. As the teams ministered in the community, they invited individuals to join them for a special meal on Wednesday night. Three couples, a teenage son, and a single lady responded, which provided further contact for the church.

Prayer is requested that God will use this faithful congregation and the labors of hundreds of volunteers to produce fruit that will remain (Matthew 5:16).