Atlantic Caribbean Union

Surviving Hurricane Dorian

Surviving Hurricane Dorian
By ATCU Communication Department

WhatsApp Image 2019-09-03 at 9.22.45 AM
“My heart is full,” said Sherrell Taylor, a resident of Freeport, Grand Bahama, The Bahamas, as she tried to describe her experience during Hurricane Dorian while still at the residence of the Women’s Ministries Director, Mrs. Arlene Sands to which she had to evacuate.
Hurricane Dorian traveled north from the vicinity of Puerto Rico and gained strength as it turned towards the northern Bahamas, approaching the Island of Abaco as a category 4 storm and strengthening to a category 5. It devastated the Islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama for most of Sunday, September 1 and Monday, September 2, 2019.
Residents who were directly on the coast and in low-lying areas were instructed to evacuate, but Sherrell had never experienced flooding in her neighborhood and decided to ride out the storm at home with her family. “Even during previous storms, my area has never flooded,” said Sherrell.
However, while looking outside as the storm approached, she was amazed and shocked as she saw the waters rising around her house. “I only had a few seconds to pack a small bag, put on proper clothing and shoes, and make a run in the monster winds.”
Sherrell and her family were able to get in her car and flee to the Sands residence from which she described her ordeal on Monday evening, September 1. “I still have family on the other side of the island asking to be evacuated,” she said. “But, as night falls evacuation efforts have come to a halt.”
Persons have been asking to be evacuated from 7:00 a.m., and up to sunset the overwhelmed evacuation teams have not been able to get to some. Many persons are still unaccounted for and even the structures of some of the shelters have been compromised. The Freeport and Shiloh Seventh-day Adventist Churches were both used as shelters during hurricane Dorian. The level of damage sustained by these structures is unknown at this time, but all those who sought shelter there are reported to be safe.
The administration of the Atlantic Caribbean Union (ATCU) and the sister conferences of the North Bahamas Conference are all monitoring the situation and mobilizing efforts and resources to be able to bring relief to those affected by Dorian as soon as the all clear is given by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).
Pastor Peter Kerr, president of ATCU, has been in contact with as many persons as possible in Grand Bahama and Abaco in order to better mobilize efforts after the passing of the storm. “We are always extremely concerned about our brothers and sisters affected during the passage of storms. We pray and ask for God’s intervention, and we also bring relief to the physical needs of the members and residents,” stated Pastor Kerr.
Pastor Henry Moncur III, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Director of ATCU, though personally affected by Dorian as he is a resident of Grand Bahama, is in close communication with ADRA International in efforts to bring relief and support after the passage of the storm.
“To be honest, I can’t put words to this whole ordeal. It’s surreal and emotional, but even when things are bad, God is still good,” said Sherrell.
Please continue to pray for the residents of Grand Bahama and Abaco in the Bahamas, and please contact a local Adventist Church or conference to find out how you can assist with donations.