GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Residents in the Forest Heights neighborhood in Gulfport woke up Saturday morning to the hum of lawn mowers and the whir of leaf blowers. Four churches all came together to do what they say is what God wanted them to do.
The churches cleaned up the yards of elderly residents and even brought around fruit baskets. It was an effort put together by the pastor of Faith Works Ministry, the Rev. John Jones, who says he grew up in this neighborhood and wanted to give back.
"We just thank God that we are able to come out and help, because the people in this community, I love them. They've been there with me when I was doing bad, and they've been there with me since I've been doing good. We're just looking for better things to happen in this area, and we're just thanking God for whatever he does in this area for us," said Jones.
Jones joined Lighthouse Full Gospel, Extended Hands Assembly of God and First Assembly of God of Gulfport to get the job done. The pastors of all four churches hope to help out another neighborhood soon.
Jones and the Rev. Bill Towles, of Lighthouse Full Gospel Fellowship, get together with other community preachers every week for a prayer breakfast. During the most recent breakfast, Jones got the idea to help his old neighborhood.
"I said it would be nice to be able to come out here and help, but I didn't know who was going to help me, but God did," said Jones.
Towles got all four churches together and came up with the plan. Church members brought lawn mowers, weed eaters and other landscaping equipment and got to work at several homes throughout the community.
"The whole purpose of us coming is to, first of all, to allow them to see the love of God, but also to see the church. Not just a denomination, not just a color or race, but the church come together, in love, work together and do what God told us to do," said Towles.