Pastor Joe's Katrina Blog: Ministry to the Diaspora

As New Orleans' churches anticipate digging out after the hurricane, this pastor journals a few hopeful thoughts.

Editor's note: Like hundreds of thousands of others, Joe McKeever fled New Orleans when the threat of direct hit by a hurricane, prophesied for decades, suddenly seemed plausible. Now, like hundreds of pastors who evacuated, Joe is waiting to return. But when he comes home, Joe will be trying to reassemble not just one shattered congregation, but more than a hundred. He writes: "Many have been washed out of existence and their members scattered so severely that the church will never be reassembled. At least, not on earth."

Joe McKeever, most familiar to Leadership readers for his delightful cartoons, is also a pastor to pastors as Director of Mission of the Baptist Association of Greater New Orleans. In 15 years of ministry there, Joe fell in love with the city that some revere, some revile, and that now lies in ruins. Speaking to Associated Press religion columnist Terry Mattingly, McKeever delivered a mini-sermon he calls "What New Orleans and Heaven Have in Common."

"Obviously, people ...

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