SHAWNEE, Okla. (BP) — In the wake of severe tornado damage at Oklahoma Baptist University on the evening of April 19, Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief (DR) was already on the ground assessing damage and seeking to help by the following morning.
“This is the most significant natural disaster in the history of OBU. That’s 113 years,” OBU President Heath Thomas told KOCO news in Oklahoma City. “I am very happy to report that we had no injuries and we had no casualties. … Looking at the damage the tornado wrought on our campus, that’s a significant blessing.”
Jason Yarbrough, state director for Oklahoma Baptist DR, indicated the ministry volunteers will be serving at OBU and other areas in Oklahoma hard hit by tornado damage.
“Our Oklahoma Baptist DR-trained volunteers will be part of a coordinated response to this tornado devastation in Shawnee and other areas,” he said. “We are heartbroken for our OBU family—and for our friends and neighbors who were affected across Oklahoma—we will be working to provide all the help and hope people need.”
- Some ways Oklahoma Baptist DR is already at work helping after the tornadoes include:
- Providing meals for the OBU campus
- Downed tree- and tree-branches removal
- Helping tarp roofs for homeowners
- Chainsaw work and debris removal
- Chaplaincy counseling services
- Assessing storm damage
- Potential to be called on to help in additional feeding efforts
“We want to share the love of Jesus and the Gospel as we serve people at their point of need,” Yarbrough added. Oklahoma Baptist DR will be serving in Shawnee, Cole and other areas of Oklahoma.
Oklahomans needing to request assistance from DR can do so at www.okdisasterhelp.org/request-assistance. On that website, people can also make a tax-deductible donation to Oklahoma Baptist DR relief efforts.