Recently the Covenant Brethren Church was represented in Hawaii to help with the fire disaster there. Mark Teets, one of our national disaster coordinators, made the trip with Samaritan’s Purse to help get the camp set up for the hundreds of volunteers that would follow. He was part of a team of 40 that was tasked with building air conditioned tent sleeping quarters, kitchen quarters and so on.

The need for help is enormous with over 600 families calling in seeking assistance. As work finished on the camp, teams went out and begin to assist families with labor and comfort. While there, they were able to assist 40 families, with 20 people giving their lives to Jesus in the process.

The tent city they constructed that would house 150 workers at a time.

Mark reported that the devastation was much worse than was reported on TV. The entire town that they were working in had been burned to ash. In a town of 13,000 only 10 houses were left standing. Much of the work just involved listening to the people who’s lives had been turned upside down. The chaplains stayed very busy just talking and praying with people who felt they had lost everything only to realize they had new friends to stand with them.

Workers sifting through ashes for homeowners surviving possessions.

A chaplain sitting and talking with a local resident.

The Lieutenant Governor of the state brought in students from the University of Hawaii to help and many of the locals pitched in as well, to assist the team getting set up. Repeatedly they were thanked for all they were doing to help people that had been so overcome by this disaster. They pointed out that the fire had severely hurt the tourism industry. Something most of the people counted on for income. Their willingness to help brought hope to people that were struggling to find any.

Franklin Graham said, “We are not a humanitarian organization, we are an evangelistic organization that does humanitarian work. Everything we do, we do in the name of Jesus.” Is that something you want to be a part of. You may not want to travel to Hawaii but there are currently at least 6 different areas where Samaritan’s Purse and by extension, CBC, has projects ongoing. Contact Mark Teets or Brenda Harvey through the national office by calling 304-534-8010 or sending an email to and let them know you would like to sign up to be a part of a future trip. They will find a job for you that is within your ability. All it will cost you may be some travel money and maybe not even that. Won’t you prayerfully consider touching lives for Jesus through our disaster program. You will be blessed.