Destruction, debris... and a miracle

Tornado damage is so extreme. The EF-3 that blew through Dallas earlier this week left a very significant amount of destruction and debris in its path. Given the level of damage, it is truly a miracle that there was no loss of life.

For many families in the path of the storm, it will be weeks or months before life begins to return to normal. And that's where Mercy Chefs steps in.

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UPDATE on Dallas (photos)

UPDATE: We just served our first meals for lunch in Dallas in response to the EF-3 tornado and also will be serving dinner THIS EVENING. And now that our team is on the ground, it is clear that the damage from the storm was more extensive than the national news has reported. First, the tornado -- with winds up to 140MPH -- hit a heavily populated area of North Dallas as evidenced from this night photo taken by the Dallas Police Department Helicopter Unit that shows the extensive power outages along the path of the storm.

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Deploying to Dallas TODAY!

I'm sure you heard about the massive tornado that just struck the Dallas area...

An EF-3 tornado with winds up to 140MPH ripped through North Dallas communities, leaving a trail of wreckage in its path. Schools were closed and thousands left without power. One witness said it "looks like bombs went off." 

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Tough decisions...

We are facing some tough decisions.

The devastation in the Bahamas -- and specifically on Abaco -- was so immense that the work of rebuilding is literally just beginning.

In the past week, Mercy Chefs' truck began moving thousands of pounds of supplies across the island. The truck is a godsend. There is an urgent need for reliable transportation, especially of the heavy-duty variety.

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"Disaster of the century"

Thank you so much for your partnership with Mercy Chefs during what has been one of the most challenging and rewarding seasons in our history. Your faithfulness has equipped our team to respond to disaster and expand to meet the growing need in more ways than ever already this year.

The latest issue of SURGE -- Mercy Chefs' e-newsletter for our friends and partners -- covers some of the highlights from recent months, including our response to what is being called the disaster of the century.

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CRITICAL help needed on Abaco

It's happening. Mercy Chefs is right in the EPICENTER of the effort to get aid and relief to Abaco and begin the building process.

Our heavy-duty truck is like a LIFELINE OF SUPPORT for folks on the island. Here's our truck getting ready to move some of 16 pallets of supplies that we were able to get to the local church distribution sites across the island earlier this week:

This is the FIRST STEP in the rebuilding plan. But now I urgently need Mercy Chefs friends to partner with us so we can build out a KITCHEN and a BUNKHOUSE as the base of operations for the rebuilding effort.

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We have a PLAN in Abaco!

I'm thrilled to report that we are now moving ahead with what I believe is a God-inspired plan to help both Abaco and Grand Bahama islands on their long road to recovery...

We're going to help get the churches established first!

What has struck me during my time on both these islands has been the dogged determination of the pastors and church leaders we have met. Many of these dear folks have lost everything -- loved ones, houses, and all or most of their earthly belongings. Yet despite their loss, they feel such a strong calling to their communities that they are digging in, refusing to leave, and determined to rebuild their communities.

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Video Report From Abaco

My team produced a video detailing how your support of Mercy Chefs has helped us to respond to the overwhelming devastation in the Bahamas. Here is the report:
(Note: if the video does not load on this page, go here.)

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My meeting with the Prime Minister

We are starting to see some breakthroughs here in the Bahamas. First, the meeting with Prime Minister Hubert Minnis was very productive. It was a great opportunity to connect with potential partners as we continue to help bring relief in the most hurricane-devastated islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco.

+ + Prime Minister: "I know Mercy Chefs"

Because friends like like you have made it possible for Mercy Chefs to serve more than 65,000 meals here, the quality and importance of our work is already well established in the minds of Bahamian government officials. In fact, Prime Minister Minnis openly expressed his gratefulness for the work of Mercy Chefs and the quality of our food. He told me...

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My report from devastated Grand Bahama

I want to share with you the latest on what's happening in the Bahamas. This is one of the most devastating tragedies I've ever seen. The people we met yesterday have lived through a horrific nightmare. Now they face a seemingly impossible task of rebuilding their lives. Here are a few of those stories. --Gary

Yesterday, we flew to Grand Bahama where we met with several pastors and got an even more up close and personal look at the devastating physical and emotional impact of this storm.

First, the destruction is everywhere. We saw concrete structures built to sustain hurricane-force winds that were decimated by the winds and the rising waters.
It was shocking to see. What gripped our hearts the most was hearing 
story after story of tragic loss of life and heart-wrenching survival. Here are just a few of the stories...

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