Division Street Church Hands Out Help And Hope

They've been handing out help and hope since shortly after the storm. Church members and volunteers staff the hurricane relief center at the Division Street Church of Christ.

The local ministry is reaching far beyond its East Biloxi neighborhood.

"We're going to continue this as long as the community needs it," said coordinator, Tony Morgan.

Sleeping supplies are the focus of this week's outreach. Plenty of new mattresses and pillows are being handed out and loaded up.

"We've been helping so many people. We first started out with the food. Now we're into the cleaning supplies and bedding. So we're helping so many people," said Rev. Paul Warren.

The East Biloxi ministry reaches far beyond the peninsula. Many of the 100 plus people who come here each day are from places like Slidell, Mobile and Lucedale.

"So we still have a need. And we seem to be one of the ones on the East Biloxi side who are still able to take care of that and do that," Morgan says.

"I think they're doing a wonderful job," said Willie Gibson.

He lives just a few blocks away. Katrina flooded his Hayes Street home.

"Not too much damage to the outside. A few windows broke out. No damage to the roof, but I lost thousands of dollars worth of interior. Everything inside was destroyed," he said.

Church members have been getting help from rotating teams of volunteers. A crew from Zanesville, Ohio is lending a hand this week.

"It gives me a great feeling. I'm retired so I can do whatever I want to. I was a conductor on the CSX railroad for 36 years. So, this is a lifetime for me. I appreciate so much. Anything for God, I'm willing to do," said Jim Strouse.

That willingness to help, enables the church to respond to the ongoing need.

"Thank you a lot! Thank you a lot!" said Willie Gibson.