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Archives | Seminars | Prophecy

TBN Commissions "Mercy Strike Force" for Compassionate Outreach in New Orleans


 

by Dave Bohon | WDCmedia News

 

Oct 3, 2005  (New Orleans)-- Ken Henderson admits that his 25-plus years of ministry in some of the toughest places in the world didn't quite prepare him for what he witnessed when he first entered New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. "It was worse than many of the Third World countries I've been in," he recalled, "and it broke my heart as I saw one of America's largest cities virtually in ruins."

 

It has also offered Henderson and a small army of Christian relief workers an opportunity to minister God's mercy and love in a tangible way to a group of people in desperate need.

 

Immediately following Katrina, as Henderson prayed at his home in Colorado Springs about what he could do to help, he felt prompted to call Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), with whom he has partnered in ministry for over 20 years. Recalled Henderson, "I got through to Jan Crouch and she quickly responded by asking me to gather a team of ministers on behalf of TBN to take both practical aid and a message of hope back to the survivors in New Orleans."

 

"We felt strongly that we needed to get Ken and a 'quick response' team on the ground in New Orleans as soon as possible," said Paul Crouch Jr., Vice President of Administration for TBN, who with a gift from TBN for $25,000 officially commissioned Henderson and his team during TBN's September 6th "Behind the Scenes" program. "We saw them as a kind of mercy 'Strike Force,' ministering God's love and compassion with an urgency the situation called for."

 

That "Strike Force" included veteran outreach ministers like Doug Stringer of Somebody Care in Houston, Bishop Bart Pierce of Rock City Church in Baltimore, Maryland, and Jerry Davis of Street Reach Ministries, as well as representatives from groups like Operation Blessing, Oasis of Hollywood, and Christ in Action.

 

With several trucks filled to the brim with donations from citizens of Colorado Springs and surrounding cities, Henderson's team linked up with Don and Sondra Tipton and their emergency relief group Friend Ships, which was already on sight setting up cook kitchens and relief operations. "We used Friend Ship's 180-foot cutter the Hope , docked on the Mississippi River, as our base of operation," said Henderson, "and for the next several days we went practically non-stop, providing meals, emergency supplies, cleanup, home repairs – as well as much needed prayer -- to thousands of Katrina survivors."

 

After a brief respite back in Colorado Springs, where Henderson and wife Solveig are packing up to move their family and ministry to Solveig's native Norway, Henderson returned to New Orleans September 29 th to continue working with the ongoing relief operation. "Our goal is to overwhelm the people of New Orleans with the love of God," explained Henderson. "When people are in great need and despair, they're often the most open to the mercy that's available through Christ. That has been our hope."

 

Henderson noted that while the media has largely focused on the anger and confusion some of the survivors have felt over their loss and displacement, he and his team have witnessed very little of that from those they have been in contact with. "Overwhelmingly we have witnessed humility, thanksgiving, and a lot of kindness from every Katrina survivor we've dealt with," he said. "Personally I've found myself weeping with deep compassion from the Lord after long days of ministry to these grateful people. I can tell you that my life and the lives of my dedicated team members will never be the same after the privilege we've had to be the hands and heart of our Heavenly Father, helping to minister healing and hope."

 

He added that he and several other ministers are already making plans to return to New Orleans with a larger army of street ministers just prior to the 2006 Mardis Gras for a ministry festival they'll call "When the Saints Go Marching In." Explained Henderson, "It will be a time when dedicated men and women of God will descend on the New Orleans area to provide music, food, and the saving message of Jesus Christ. We're planning a massive evangelistic outreach."

 

Henderson pointed out that New Orleans has gained a reputation – much of it deserved -- as one of the most godless cities in the nation. "Mardi Gras, Bourbon Street, and much of the general lifestyle of many here – it seems like there has been an intentional effort on the part of some to cultivate a pagan culture in New Orleans," he said.

 

With Hurricane Katrina much of that was swept away, followed with roundups by military and law enforcement of the criminal element who stayed behind for easy looting in the aftermath of Katrina. "The law enforcement and soldiers sent in after Katrina literally swept the city clean," said Don Tipton of Friend Ships, who with the help of a gift from TBN for $200,000 has ministered to countless thousands since Katrina. "The Church now has a window of opportunity to come in with a force to New Orleans to pour God's mercy on these people. While that certainly includes the relief we've been supplying here over the last several weeks, that's got to be followed up by an army of courageous Christians who are not afraid to come here and share the gospel."

 

TBN co-founder Jan Crouch noted that the ministry of compassion that Friend Ships, Henderson, and others have been providing to Katrina survivors has the potential to soften hearts that might otherwise be closed to the gospel message. "Our Heavenly Father is all about mercy," she said. "Ministering to someone's immediate physical and emotional needs will very often open the door of someone's heart just enough so that the message of the Savior's love will be irresistible to them. That's our earnest prayer for these dear people."

 

For a more on how you can be part of the ongoing ministry of relief and love to survivors of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, visit  www.friendships.org/hurricane or call 337-433-5022.

 

For more information about TBN, visit  www.tbn.org .

New Orleans (Sept. 30, 2005) --- Ken Henderson admits that his 25-plus years of ministry in some of the toughest places in the world didn't quite prepare him for what he witnessed when he first entered New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. "It was worse than many of the Third World countries I've been in," he recalled, "and it broke my heart as I saw one of America's largest cities virtually in ruins."

 

It has also offered Henderson and a small army of Christian relief workers an opportunity to minister God's mercy and love in a tangible way to a group of people in desperate need.

 

Immediately following Katrina, as Henderson prayed at his home in Colorado Springs about what he could do to help, he felt prompted to call Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), with whom he has partnered in ministry for over 20 years. Recalled Henderson, "I got through to Jan Crouch and she quickly responded by asking me to gather a team of ministers on behalf of TBN to take both practical aid and a message of hope back to the survivors in New Orleans."

 

"We felt strongly that we needed to get Ken and a 'quick response' team on the ground in New Orleans as soon as possible," said Paul Crouch Jr., Vice President of Administration for TBN, who with a gift from TBN for $25,000 officially commissioned Henderson and his team during TBN's September 6th "Behind the Scenes" program. "We saw them as a kind of mercy 'Strike Force,' ministering God's love and compassion with an urgency the situation called for."

 

That "Strike Force" included veteran outreach ministers like Doug Stringer of Somebody Care in Houston, Bishop Bart Pierce of Rock City Church in Baltimore, Maryland, and Jerry Davis of Street Reach Ministries, as well as representatives from groups like Operation Blessing, Oasis of Hollywood, and Christ in Action.

 

With several trucks filled to the brim with donations from citizens of Colorado Springs and surrounding cities, Henderson's team linked up with Don and Sondra Tipton and their emergency relief group Friend Ships, which was already on sight setting up cook kitchens and relief operations. "We used Friend Ship's 180-foot cutter the Hope , docked on the Mississippi River, as our base of operation," said Henderson, "and for the next several days we went practically non-stop, providing meals, emergency supplies, cleanup, home repairs – as well as much needed prayer -- to thousands of Katrina survivors."

 

After a brief respite back in Colorado Springs, where Henderson and wife Solveig are packing up to move their family and ministry to Solveig's native Norway, Henderson returned to New Orleans September 29 th to continue working with the ongoing relief operation. "Our goal is to overwhelm the people of New Orleans with the love of God," explained Henderson. "When people are in great need and despair, they're often the most open to the mercy that's available through Christ. That has been our hope."

 

Henderson noted that while the media has largely focused on the anger and confusion some of the survivors have felt over their loss and displacement, he and his team have witnessed very little of that from those they have been in contact with. "Overwhelmingly we have witnessed humility, thanksgiving, and a lot of kindness from every Katrina survivor we've dealt with," he said. "Personally I've found myself weeping with deep compassion from the Lord after long days of ministry to these grateful people. I can tell you that my life and the lives of my dedicated team members will never be the same after the privilege we've had to be the hands and heart of our Heavenly Father, helping to minister healing and hope."

 

He added that he and several other ministers are already making plans to return to New Orleans with a larger army of street ministers just prior to the 2006 Mardis Gras for a ministry festival they'll call "When the Saints Go Marching In." Explained Henderson, "It will be a time when dedicated men and women of God will descend on the New Orleans area to provide music, food, and the saving message of Jesus Christ. We're planning a massive evangelistic outreach."

 

Henderson pointed out that New Orleans has gained a reputation – much of it deserved -- as one of the most godless cities in the nation. "Mardi Gras, Bourbon Street, and much of the general lifestyle of many here – it seems like there has been an intentional effort on the part of some to cultivate a pagan culture in New Orleans," he said.

 

With Hurricane Katrina much of that was swept away, followed with roundups by military and law enforcement of the criminal element who stayed behind for easy looting in the aftermath of Katrina. "The law enforcement and soldiers sent in after Katrina literally swept the city clean," said Don Tipton of Friend Ships, who with the help of a gift from TBN for $200,000 has ministered to countless thousands since Katrina. "The Church now has a window of opportunity to come in with a force to New Orleans to pour God's mercy on these people. While that certainly includes the relief we've been supplying here over the last several weeks, that's got to be followed up by an army of courageous Christians who are not afraid to come here and share the gospel."

 

TBN co-founder Jan Crouch noted that the ministry of compassion that Friend Ships, Henderson, and others have been providing to Katrina survivors has the potential to soften hearts that might otherwise be closed to the gospel message. "Our Heavenly Father is all about mercy," she said. "Ministering to someone's immediate physical and emotional needs will very often open the door of someone's heart just enough so that the message of the Savior's love will be irresistible to them. That's our earnest prayer for these dear people."

 

For a more on how you can be part of the ongoing ministry of relief and love to survivors of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, visit www.friendships.org/hurricaneor call 337-433-5022




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