Birmingham Baptist Association Disaster Relief Blizt

May 13, 2011

SATURDAYS – MAY 14, MAY 21, MAY 28, 2011

Volunteers (ages 15 years and above) will be gathering in the 6 hardest hit locations in Jefferson County each Saturday.  Volunteers may choose which area they would like to serve.  The sites are:

Cahaba Heights Baptist Church
3800 Crosshaven Drive
Birmingham, Alabama 35243
(Cahaba Heights Community)
Ben Hale, Site Coordinator

First Baptist Church, Pleasant Grove
724  4th Street
Pleasant Grove, Alabama 35217
(Pleasant Grove Community)
Jeremy Greim, Site Coordinator

Katherwood Baptist Church
600 Roanoke Street
Birmingham, Alabama 35224
(McDonald Chapel Community)
Dana Berry, Site Coordinator

Mt. Moriah Baptist Church
316 Ave U
Birmingham, Alabama 35214
(Pratt City Community)
Chris Chambers, Site Coordinator

Gardendale First Baptist Church
Family Life Center
900 Main Street
Gardendale, Alabama 35071
(North Smithfield Community)
Phil Cronin, Site Coordinator

Union Hill Baptist Church
7049 Taylors Ferry Road
Hueytown, Alabama 35023
(Concord Highlands Community)
Saint Green, Site Coordinator

What to bring:  Sun Screen, Work Gloves, personal water supply, safety goggles, personal lunch.

What wear: Long pants, closed-toed shoes (work boots preferred), T-shirt or some other ‘sleeved shirt’.

Work Description: Chain Saws Crews consisting of 2 chain saws and 6 Pullers (dragging limbs to curb), General debris removal, Taking debris to curb

 All meeting times are:
Chain Saw Crews – 7:30 AM
All others – 8:00 AM




Volunteer Opportunity in McDonald Chapel

May 12, 2011

If you would like to volunteer on Friday or Saturday, May 13/14,  in McDonald Chapel, please contact -Don Ehrett at or 276-8243; Mark Johnson at or 531-8698.

Please contact Nancy Scruggs 937-0706 if you would like to donate these items:
deodorant for men
dog and cat food
washing powder
baby wash/bath
towels and wash cloths
king size sheets
canned goods
Gatorade – individual sizes

Thank you, from the Missions Committee

May 12, 2011

These last two weeks have seen a wonderful outpouring of personal involvement, prayer and giving by church members and staff to support those affected by the storms. It has been humbling to see this happen. For us on the Mission Committee we can’t begin to find all of the people who deserve recognition and thanks for what they have been doing. Here is a partial list. THANK YOU CHURCH!!

– Supplies and encouragement taken to FBC Williams for tornado victims
– M-Power supplies collection and satellite clinics in Pratt City
– Support visits to members whose homes in Cahaba Heights were damaged
– Assistance in moving Colleen Burroughs’ mother and grandmother out of their damaged home  
– Tornado Relief Concert at MBBC on May 8th – $4,436 raised for tornado victims
– Members volunteering with Red Cross Disaster Feeding operations
– Members volunteering for debris cleanup though BBA, Alabama CBF and many civic organizations
– Doctors, nurses and pharmacists in our church donating their time and talents
– McDonald Chapel disaster relief, and preparing basis for longer term recovery efforts
– Teachers in our church leading their classes in providing needed items for tornado victims
– Members who have taken time off work, and led their co-workers, in relief activities
– Pleasant Grove debris cleanup and supplies organization by Youth group 
– Hygiene kits for adults and children through our Children’s Ministry

Disaster Relief Report from the Missions Committee

May 12, 2011

In the aftermath of the storms the missions committee started looking into two main areas of response. The first of these was Cahaba Heights. There was concern for VHBC members living there, and also a general sense that the Cahaba Heights community was being underserved by disaster relief agencies. On both counts the situation is now better. Members living there have been attended to, and debris removal to the side of the road has been completed for most Cahaba Heights homes. 

Our other area of focus has been the McDonald Chapel community which the big tornado hit as it moved north east from Pleasant Grove. Focusing in this area provides opportunity for long term commitment (relief, recovery, rebuilding) along with several partner churches, serving a badly hit small community in a less affluent area of Birmingham.

About 35 homes have been totally destroyed and about that many again have significant damage. Debris clean-up is going slowly as most residents are still waiting on insurance adjusters or FEMA. Mart Gray (pastor Covenant Baptist in Elba) and some members of that church started relief operations last week. We joined them in debris removal on Friday along with some others (mostly staff) from Shades Crest, Church of the Covenant, Southside and Riverchase who are interested in a sustained long term commitment to the McDonald Chapel community. This commitment is being actively supported by Alabama CBF. 

Relief operations are being conducted out of a small building that normally serves as a ministry to underprivileged girls that is run by Lottie Green. There is no mayor and Lottie is basically the community center for this part of McDonald Chapel, a helpful ally in understanding the needs and cautions of the local community. It will probably be a few more weeks before major recovery efforts get going. In the meantime the plan is to have an onsite coordinator from one of our churches present on weekends. A member of our committee will go over at least once a week, and we hope there will be individuals in the church who want to come forward to help define and lead the longer term recovery work

Kids4AL Project 1: Boxes of Hope

May 11, 2011

Boxes of Hope will be given to children impacted by the heartbreaking disaster caused by the tornadoes in Alabama on April 27, 2011. These boxes of activities and games will give children hope and something positive to focus on during this time. Think about if all your possessions were lost in the storm and what a Box of Hope would mean to a boy or girl!


Where is the Children’s Building Foyer? Come up the main driveway (off Vestavia Drive) to the green awning. Enter the building through the door underneath the green awning and you will be in the Children’s Building foyer! If you come at a time when the building is locked, please come to the church office. The church office is located to the left of the green awning. Enter through the middle wooden door.

Use a shoe box, stationary box or a plastic box and fill with these items:

  1. Personal note or drawing with your first name, church name, and city where you live.
  2. A scripture verse of hope and encouragement. (Ex. Psalm 62:5, 147:3, Ephesians 3:14-19)
  3. Include a pen (or pencil) and crayons and a note book or pad in each box. Drawing and writing are the best ways to help children process what they are thinking and feeling.
  4. Fill the box full of fun activities for the child. Include items such as coloring books, stickers, eraser, pencil sharpener, markers, stamp and ink pad set, notebook, journal, sticky notes, flash cards, handheld games, puzzles, activity books, children’s books, animal play figures, jewelry, mini lego set, fun bands, playing cards like Uno or Go Fish, cars, miniature board game, ball, finger puppets, beach ball, tennis ball, doll, flashlight, stuffed animal, yo-yo, jump rope, devotional, and Bible. Please do not pack glass, liquid, or candy in the boxes.
  5. Label each box on both ends of the box in large print with one of the following symbols. *GY (Girl age 3-5), *GO (Girl age 6-11), *BY (Boy age 3-5), *BO (Boy age 6-11)
  6. Pray for the child that will receive the box. Pray this scripture for the child from Psalms 40:1-3. I waited patiently for the LORD; He turned to me and heard my cry. “He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the LORD.“
  7. Deliver your boxes to the Children’s Building Foyer at Vestavia Hills Baptist Church by this WEDNESDAY NIGHT, MAY 18.

Thank you for sharing hope with children and their families! Questions? Please contact Nancy Akins,

Visit  Kids4AL to learn more.

Youth Spent Saturday in Pleasant Grove

May 11, 2011

VHBC Youth spent Saturday clearing debris and cleaning out around the exterior of Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church. With the help of other volunteers, the group of 28 students and parents cleared the church’s playground and the rest of the property. They also helped offload several trucks that came in with supplies, sorted canned food and other donations, and assisted a neighboring family in clearing their yard.

Daybreak in Alabama

May 11, 2011

When I get to be a composer
I’m gonna write me some music about
Daybreak in Alabama
And I’m gonna put the purtiest songs in it
Rising out of the ground like a swamp mist
And falling out of heaven like soft dew.
I’m gonna put some tall tall trees in it
And the scent of pine needles
And the smell of red clay after rain
And long red necks
And poppy colored faces
And big brown arms
And the field daisy eyes
Of black and white black white black people
And I’m gonna put white hands
And black hands and brown and yellow hands
And red clay earth hands in it
Touching everybody with kind fingers
And touching each other natural as dew
In that dawn of music when I
Get to be a composer
And write about daybreak
In Alabama.