Manassas Journal Messenger | Church does the right thing for Katrina victims

Johnny Clemons, a deacon at Greater Mount Calvary Christian Church, said helping hurricane victims is simply the right thing to do.

“You can’t call yourself a Christian and not roll up your sleeves and do what you can where you can,” Clemons said “We’re trying to fill some of the voids.”

Clemons and the members of the church on Westmoreland Avenue in Manassas donated clothes, bottled water, sports drinks, toiletries, disposable baby diapers and non-perishable foods to send to the Gulf Coast.

The goods they collected will go to Christ in Action, a Manassas organization that is on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s list of first responders.

Volunteers from the organization deploy to disaster areas to help clear debris, feed people and help rebuild.

Christ in Action, which has been gathering similar goods from other churches in the area, will take the things to where they’re needed in the Gulf Coast, said Contina Paul of the Christian Music and Ministry Network.

The network organized the entertainment for the Hurricane Katrina Victims Relief Mission Event at the church Saturday.

Area Food Lion, Giant and Wal-Mart stores donated gift certificates for water as well, Paul said.

Entertainment for the children who attended the event included face painting, a clown, pony rides and moonbounces.

Singers, dancers, rappers and comedians from area churches came to perform at the event.

Volunteers sold hot dogs, chips, soda, water and pizza. All profits will be used to buy more goods for the victims.

Christ in Action has deployed people in Gulfport, Miss., where they have been feeding about 4,000 people a day, Paul said.

The organization is looking for more help, she said.

“They need at least 200 people to go there,” Paul said. “What they’re looking for is on their Web site.”

That Web site is www.christinac

Assistant Pastor Aaron Johnson said a couple of church members have been to Gulfport to help out and others are considering it.

“Right now there are a couple who are interested in going. There has been some interest from our ministry,” Johnson said.

Germma Jackson, who helped organize Saturday’s event at the church, said it’s important to keep the donations coming because there are people in the hurricane area who still need help. The disaster is not over and done with, Jackson said.

“The most important thing to me is keeping in the forefront of people’s minds that it’s not just a TV show that you’re watching,” she said.

“These are real people that need real help,” she said.

The volunteers raised $8,000 Saturday. PE Systems, a Fairfax firm will match the donations.


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