An Agent of Restoration

Gonzales, Louisiana (September 19) Travis Rogers’ days off, he volunteers his time to help restore his church, The Beacon of Light Church in LaPlace, Louisiana. The building took in almost three feet of water due to Hurricane Ida. LaPlace is a small community on the east bank of the Mississippi River, 25 miles west of New Orleans. The area was heavily damaged by floodwaters that took over neighborhoods after Hurricane Ida dumped 17 inches of rain in the area.

Travis’ own home was damaged in the storm, and in the first few days after the storm he and his wife concentrated on getting it cleaned up.  “We were just trying to take care of things around here and didn’t even think to eat anything,” he explained. “Our neighbor began bringing hot meals to our neighborhood. I didn’t know, at first, they came from The Salvation Army.”

One day, after Travis and his son had been working at the church, they realized they hadn’t stopped to eat all day. He happened to drive by The Salvation Army mobile feeding unit on the way home and stopped. Salvation Army volunteers served them a hot meal and assessed their unmet needs. Little did The Salvation Army know Travis was about to meet their unmet need – a new location to serve.

“When I heard The Salvation Army needed a new place to serve, I immediately thought of the Beacon of Light church,” explained Travis. “The Salvation Army is living out Mark 12:31 – Love your neighbor as yourself.” They are truly loving on our neighborhood.  They are the hand of God in this community and helping to restore lives.  We had to help.”

Travis made some phone calls, and within a couple of days The Salvation Army was set up in the church parking lot, serving meals and clean up supplies to the community.

“We are here to serve the community, and, in this case, the community served us,” said Captain Derrick Smith, Emotional and Spiritual Care Officer. “Making a connection with Travis also helped the church feel like they were giving back.  We are grateful to Travis and the Beacon of Light church for helping to restore their community.”

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