LAKE CHARLES, La.—Hurricane Laura had a major effect on many people earlier this month, including those who were not directly in the hurricane’s path.

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Kiana Wray, left, connected with family and friends back in Louisiana while she was serving with DR.

Kiana Wray from Sulphur, La. is beginning her freshman year at Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU). She was in Shawnee a couple of weeks before the hurricane reached landfall. Though she was miles away, her heart was with her family and friends in Louisiana.

Through OBU connections, Wray met up with Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief (DR) volunteers, and she was on the first team that left to serve her home area.

“It was the biggest blessing of my life,” Wray said. “I was able to connect with people and love on everybody back home but also do everything God was calling me to do back home. It was great to serve people and support them during this tough time.”

Wray was able to see her family who are displaced as their homes are currently unlivable. Many are staying in Tennessee.

Wray learned about OBU through her church going to summer camp at Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center. “God told me I was going to go to OBU,” she said. Her major is cross-cultural ministries with a minor in business.

OBU student serves her home with DR - Baptist Messenger of Oklahoma

Wray, middle, was a part of the first DR volunteer team that left to serve Louisiana.

DR helping hurricane victims

Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief remains active in supporting areas that are recovering from Hurricane Laura, while being aware of Hurricane Sally making landfall on the gulf coast.

Don Williams, state DR director, is overseeing the work DR volunteers are doing through Lake Charles, La., Moss Bluff, providing meals, taking work requests and dispatching recovery teams. Williams also is aware of current storm developments.

“We continue to pray for those who are impacted by (Hurricane) Sally,” Williams said. “We will continue to bring hope, help and healing to those already impacted and prepare to provide assistance to those in the near future.”

Williams reported DR provides more than 4,000 meals a day to the people of Lake Charles, La. Many are still without power and running water.

As of publication, DR has worked with 80 homeowners and continues to have more than 200 people requesting assistance. Williams also reported 254 professions of faith in Christ, resulting from DR work.

For updates or to donate to Oklahoma Baptists DR, visit