EDITORIAL/The cavalry arrives


The Neshoba Democrat in Philadelphia, Miss., said in an editorial on Feb. 24:

Linemen in bucket trucks and Baptists serving hot meals have been like the cavalry arriving since a debilitating winter storm knocked out power to most of unincorporated Neshoba County last week, even shutting the Walmart in town for a couple of days.

At daybreak on a crisp, clear morning Tuesday and continuing as the sun rose, out-of-town crews in convoys of bucket trucks and utility vehicles were heading south on Holland Avenue out of town to the hardest-hit areas of the county to get the lights on and we are thankful as a community. 

Electric cooperatives from Alabama, Arkansas and other parts of Mississippi, among others, have been assisting Central Electric to get the lights back on.

There are multiple heroes in this crisis, too many to name, but we can all be thankful for caring neighbors eager to pitch in and help. 

The hardship many families here are facing was illustrated in an announcement by the Neshoba County School District on Monday offering assistance to children.

Elementary students who need a snack pack sent home, a clean set of clothes, hygiene products and so on were their concern on Monday.

“We are here to HELP!  We realize many in our area still do not have power, water and may be in need,” the statement posted on Facebook said.

Parents or guardians were encouraged to email tplott@neshobacentral.com or call the school at 601-656-2182 and ask for Jessica McCoy.  

What many assumed would be a snow day turned into a snow week with schools and businesses shuttered.

Mississippi Baptist Disaster Relief teams provided 1,800 hot meals over three days to Neshoba County residents impacted by the winter storm. 

Nine Neshoba County Baptist congregations assisted in providing direct feeding and the Neshoba Baptist Center in town hosted a drive-through feeding line.  

The team at the Baptist Center was able to have over 60 direct ministry contacts and 30 opportunities to pray with those in the drive-through feeding line, ministry officials said.

“Most important of all was that one of our DR Chaplains was able to share with and pray with two individuals who accepted Christ as their Savior! Praise the Lord!” the relief ministry posted on its Facebook page about the Neshoba County efforts.

The Lord can use even a fence post to accomplish His will and without our aid, and he used a terrible winter storm and a relief ministry to bring two of His children unto himself at no cost, a free gift. 

The Rev. Eric Sharp, the youth minister and associate pastor at New Bethel Baptist Church near Laurel Hill, led their feeding team Sunday and said it was “wonderful to see our young people eager to serve those that were in need.” 

The people who came and picked up take-out plates “were so thankful for a hot meal,” he said.

So, there is some good that has — and will — come out of this storm.

Plenty of residents have questions and Central Electric should address concerns when the crisis is over.

But for now, thanks to all the heroes.

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