Harvest church clearing trees, cooking meals, & collecting donations

HARVEST, AL (WAFF) - Church members and volunteers at Capshaw Baptist Church in Harvest have been hard at work for over a week. The groups there have several operations going to help storm victims.

The Limestone Baptist Association with support from the Southern Baptist Convention, The Red Cross, and The Salvation Army is providing three hot meals a day to storm victims. They have a fully operational mobile kitchen set up in the church parking lot.

Inside the church building, victims can "shop" in the "Donation Store." Donors have provided non-perishable food items, toiletries, cleaning supplies, baby supplies, children's clothing, and toys.

Capshaw's Executive Pastor Jeff Dooley said the relief efforts are what their church community is all about. "We here at Capshaw, we love people. That's why we're here, is to minister to people in times of need, and share the love of Christ with them. It's been a huge blessing to love on people and reach out to them and meet their immediate needs and also their spiritual needs as well," he said.

Crews organized by the Limestone Baptist Association Disaster Relief Team are also providing yard and tree clearing services to nearby residents.

"This would probably take me a year. I'm 81-years-old, and I have a heart valve from a cow in my chest. So, if I had to do this myself it would be an impossible task," said David Spence.  Spence and his wife couldn't get out of their driveway after the storms hit. Crews worked in his yard Wednesday and Thursday to clear massive trees that had fell.

A neighbor put him in touch with the volunteers at Capshaw. Olan Phillips is leading the crews as they work throughout the community.

"Since I'm part of the [Limestone Baptist Association] Disaster Relief, I started making phone calls to get people to come, volunteers. Now we have probably four teams of about five or six people that we send out to homes that need tree removal," said Phillips.

Spence praised the volunteers as they worked. "This group is really fabulous. They've been feeding us three meals a day because we don't have any electricity or any way to get out to get food for a couple of days. So, this church group is really a blessing."

Spence said he could not bear to stand by and watch the crew work, so he has been out in the yard, too.

"The Lord helps those who help themselves. So anything I can do, I'm able to do, I'm glad to do to help them help me," he said.

The crews plan on helping as many people as they can.

"As long as we have requests and people have a need, we'll be here," Phillips said.

Able people 18 and older can volunteer to help with the clean-up efforts. If you need help cleaning up your yard, you can also fill out a request for assistance. Both can be done at Capshaw Baptist Church during business hours. The church is located at 14944 Dupree-Worthey Road Harvest, AL 35749. The telephone number is (256) 232 -7763.

To find out more about Capshaw Baptist Church, visit http://www.capshaw.org/

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