Gulf Coast Disaster Response 'Broken;' Christians Called to Share Hope

Federal response to the hurricane disasters, three months later, is falling short of meeting the needs of the broken areas in the Gulf Coast, according to reports. Not only is the region broken, but so is the recovery assistance.

"System appears broken," reported William Carwile, former top responder in Mississippi for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, according to The Associated Press.

Carwile was referring to the shortage of food, water and ice being distributed in Mississippi.

Reports by the House Government Reform Committee investigating the government response to the storm and Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco revealed delays and unanswered requests for federal help.

Christian Emergency Network (CEN) Founder and CEO Mary Marr said the urgent time presents an opportunity for Christians to step in and share hope.

"Government at all levels is acknowledging that they are struggling to meet the needs," she said in a released statement. "That is why it is absolutely incumbent upon Christians to identify ministries serving in the area – ministries that unashamedly share the Gospel, but do so sensitively while still being effective and efficient. By sharing their time, talents and treasures with these ministries, Christians are provided an opportunity to share the Gospel."

After the devastating effects of 9/11, CEN organized a united pray-care-share media and ministry response and now has over 5,000 Christian organizational partners and 47,000 church partners across the nation.

"Our ministry partners are committed to not leaving until every need has been met," said Marr. "For that to happen, they need the support of Christians everywhere."

With hurricane evacuees dispersed throughout the states and others struggling with their "own personal tragedies," Marr said, "Christians must be prepared to share the hope that is within them.

"That means they must first be fully surrendered to Christ. Then, they must emulate the example of our Lord – especially as we celebrate the season of His birth – by sacrificially sharing their faith."

Christian Emergency Network leads Christians to intelligently pray for, sensitively care for, and strategically share the gospel with victims involved in a national emergency.

For more information on ways to help, visit www.christianemergencynetwork.org.