3 February, 2020
Early on Sunday morning, three days before Christmas, a small but committed team of volunteers banded together for a road trip north to Biloela to provide much-needed drought relief to the community. It is an area, like much of Queensland, that has been hit hard by the on-going drought. What is often forgotten is that drought doesn’t end when the publicity ends, and it affects communities, families and individuals in multiple ways. This need tugged on the heart-strings and the purses of several Seventh-day Adventist Churches – Nambour, Gympie, Gladstone, Biloela – as well as Sanitarium, ADRA Nambour Op Shop and ADRA Australia. The plan was to deliver Christmas hampers to the drought-affected families of Biloela in time for Christmas. The response was co-ordinated by Pr Steve Ward, pastor for Nambour Seventh-day Adventist Church, who pulled in the efforts of several groups. The ADRA Nambour Op Shop donated a portion of its takings, Sanitarium donated Weet-Bix and So Good and had it delivered on-site to Biloela, local churches donated dry goods and funds towards the project and ADRA Australia supported the travel costs for the team and contributed gift vouchers towards the food hampers. In addition to this, there were donations given locally in Biloela including one anonymous donation of several gift vouchers. Such is the power of working together with our local churches and the local community in a time of need!
On the morning of service, several volunteers were ready for action and waiting to be Christ’s hands and feet to the community of Biloela. In total twenty-three gift cards were given out, in addition to food hampers and other vouchers. Two large families came through to Biloela church to collect that were doing it really tough and “to see the surprise and gratitude in their eyes…was very humbling,” says Rebecca de Git, member of Biloela SDA church. “It really was a day where we received such a blessing by being the hands and feet of Jesus.” Pr Steve Ward shared “a big thank you to our churches, our (Nambour) Op Shop, to ADRA and to Sanitarium. We then went on the road and delivered to (several) farms, some of which their houses were unlivable and they received with tears and joy.” How wonderful it is to be able to represent and share Christ in this way: practical, genuine and with no strings attached. This is true disinterested service – Christ’s method of ministry in action. As drought and now fires continue to ravage our land, please keep these struggling communities in prayers and if you and your church want to respond to a community in need, please contact ADRA by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 1800 242 372.
Responses like these are made possible because of your generous support. Having funds ready to go means that we can be ready and there when people, like the families in Biloela, need us the most. Please, give generously to our Disaster Famine and Relief Offering so that in their time of need, we can be there.