As everyone from President Donald Trump to politicians of all stripes try to make sense of the mess that is Puerto Rico, I’ve noticed little has been written about all the religious groups heading down to the U.S. territory to help.
Why is this? Information about these efforts is all over the place on Twitter and in social media.
So, along with the city of Chicago sending some two dozen firefighters, paramedics and engineers to Puerto Rico, there’s a group of Chicago Catholics sending down supplies as well. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which uses its storage centers in Atlanta as a staging ground for emergency relief, is also sending folks to Puerto Rico.
Seventh-day Adventist students and professors from the Adventist-affiliated Andrews University in Michigan are likewise showing up. The Catholic Diocese of Providence, R.I. is chipping in 10 grand. The Southern Baptist Disaster Relief teams were finally given permission by FEMA to move in.
You may have heard about President Trump tossing towels at a Calvary Chapel in Guaynabo, but here’s a story about a Calvary Chapel-affiliated church in California that’s trying to get supplies to their brethren some 3,500 miles away.
That story was from the NBC affiliate in San Luis Obispo, but most of the stories I’ve seen are from the religious press. Case in point is this Charisma News post about everyone ranging from Paula White Ministries to Franklin Graham’s Samaritan’s Purse racing to get thousands of pounds of supplies to the island.
It does seem ironic that while so many have problems with Graham’s style or politics, there’s much less coverage when Samaritan’s Purse pours relief supplies into a devastated area.
Christianity Today also did an overview of which religious charities are doing what.