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Billy Graham Rapid Response Team Deploys to Four States After Deadly Tornado Outbreak

Contact: Erik Ogren, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 704-577-2109, eogren@bgea.org

CHARLOTTE, N.C., March 6, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team has deployed to five locations in four states after recent tornadoes claimed dozens of lives and caused millions of dollars of damage to homes and businesses from the Midwest to the South. Teams of disaster-trained chaplains will minister to the needs of storm survivors in and around the communities of Harrisburg, Ill.; Madison, Ind.; Henryville, Ind.; West Liberty, Ky.; and Charlotte, N.C.

"It's impossible to overstate the pain and despair caused by tornadoes," said Jack Munday, director of the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team. "There are times when you can see a disaster coming and have an opportunity to get out of the way. Tornadoes are so sudden. One minute your life is normal, and the next your whole world has been turned inside-out. Please pray for these dear people as they grieve and mourn, and as they begin to try to put the pieces back together again. We will be there to respond with compassion and the hope of Jesus Christ."

In each of the five cities, the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team is deploying alongside disaster response ministry Samaritan's Purse to work together to meet the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the survivors.

The recent tornado outbreaks are reminiscent of the 2011 tornado season, which saw massive twisters destroying entire cities across multiple states. In the first half of last year, chaplains deployed to eight different disaster areas across four states, including extended deployments in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, Ala., and Joplin, Mo.

The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team is a nationwide network of chaplains across 44 states that are specifically trained to deal with crisis situations. Since the ministry was launched in 2002, it has responded to more than 125 natural and man-made disasters, including hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, fires and shootings.

For more information on the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team, visit www.billygraham.org/rrt. For videos, photos and news articles from recent Billy Graham Rapid Response Team deployments, visit www.billygraham.org/response. Ministry updates and photo galleries are posted at www.facebook.com/BGRapidResponseTeam.

About the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association proclaims the Gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world by every effective means available through a wide range of domestic and international evangelism ministries. Visit
www.billygraham.org. Get news updates on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/BGEAnews.