Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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Hillcrest Church Office
September 15, 2004

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Here is this week's WINNING WAYS . . . .

“Help with Hurricane Relief”
by Tom Goodman

My thoughts were about five hundred miles away this past weekend, with the people of the Cayman Islands who were being ravaged by Hurricane Ivan (most of you know that I moved to Austin from the Caribbean island of Grand Cayman).

For the first half of this week, the news was sketchy since no flights could come or go from the island, and few phone calls made connections.  I depended (still do) on news from and  Now that Cayman is slowly getting connected to the rest of the world again, the residents are sharing a brave but sobering picture of the situation they have to face.

I hope you’ll help out, and I’ll tell you how in a moment.

I talked with Dave Jorge, the associate pastor at the church I used to serve, and he said the whole island looked like a nuclear bomb had gone off.  No trees, downed line poles, and at least one apartment complex I passed every afternoon on my drive home simply no longer exists.  While many buildings across the island can be repaired quickly, others are simply not suitable for occupancy.  Remarkably, after four days there are still no official reports of fatalities, but dozens of people are unaccounted for.

On the night the hurricane was due to hit, Dave and his family chose to spend Saturday night at the church building in case they were needed.  They were.  As the night wore on, firetrucks continued to show up at the church with people picked up from the streets or brought over from hurricane shelters that were already at occupancy.  Dave said he’ll never forget seeing the firetrucks rolling in with fifty people clinging to the sides.  Soon, several hundred were at the building.  The church’s generator went out about 2 a.m., and with the winds howling at 150 mph, they decided not to go outside to re-start it.  That’s about the time that waters began to rise, filling the Worship Center and gym with about two feet of salt water.

Floodwaters have receded, contact is once again being made with the outside world, and now the real work begins.  The leaders at First Baptist Church want to be a relief center for the recovery effort.  Here’s how you can partner with them in that effort:

Donations can be sent to….

    Carter Davis
    International Mission Board
    12020 Northwest 40th Street
    Coral Springs, Florida 33065

You should make checks out to the International Mission Board and mention that the gift is for the Cayman relief effort.  Carter will then send the gift to First Baptist Church for their work, and will send you an acknowledgement of you contribution for tax purposes.

If you prefer to send items instead of cash donations, you can also send items to Carter.  He will get them on a Cayman-bound ship.  The people of Cayman need the following:

    Canned food (tuna, corned beef, soups)
    Batteries (any kind)
    Chain saws with oil
    And water . . . lots of water.

These items need to be purchased by the case or already packaged in a corrugated box.

This is a great way to help a church help their hurting community.  At the moment, no one is requesting volunteers to come help rebuilt.  If you want to be contacted about serving on a work crew if First Baptist Church requests help, send me an e-mail ( and I’ll add you to my distribution list.  I know you will keep the people of my former church in your prayers!


This Week at Hillcrest:

“Taste of Far West” is This Saturday!  Drop by the shops on Far West this Saturday, Sept 18, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.!  Hillcrest is joining the shop owners in organizing a community festival.  Booths and games will introduce the community to the merchants—and to our church!
Host Training is This Sunday!  If you’ve signed up to be a HOST leader for our “Purpose-Driven Life” Campaign, come to the training this Sunday, September 19, 9:30 a.m. (during the Bible study hour).
Discover Hillcrest:  This Sunday, September 19.  The class will be held right after the morning service, AND LUNCH IS PROVIDED!  The class is for those who want to become members, and for those who just want to learn more about Hillcrest.  The class and lunch ends at 2:15 p.m. Topics include:
    The most important thing you need to know about Jesus
    What we teach about baptism
    Four fundamentals of spiritual growth, using the acronym “H.I.L.L.”
    How to “connect” with others in the church
    How to help us reach others for Christ and church involvement
    How to worship
While I teach the adult class, BJ teaches "Discover Hillcrest Kids" for children ages 8-12, and Jim teaches "Discover Hillcrest Youth" for students in grades 6-12.  Childcare is provided for children under the age of 8.
Book Look:  I’m writing a book and you can help me review it.  I’m hoping to present a chapter a week in the midweek service (Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.).  If you can’t make it to the services, you can still read and comment on the chapters at www.anchorcourse.blogspot.comReading these chapters will help you explain the faith, and forwarding these chapters to your seeking friends will help them explore the faith.  If you want to get an e-mail notification when I’ve added a new chapter to the website, write me at and I’ll add you to the distribution list.
Does Your Neighborhood Association or Apartment Complex Have a Newsletter?  If so, please sponsor an ad in your area’s newsletter about our upcoming Purpose-Driven Life campaign.  You’ll want to contact those who publish your newsletter to find out about cost, deadline, and other details.  Then contact Patty Waldo at so she can get you the information you’ll need.



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