SULPHUR—As May 1 arrived, Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief (DR) volunteers were in action responding to the outbreak of tornadoes in Oklahoma in late April, even as severe weather forecasts loom.

Jason Yabrough, state director for Oklahoma Baptist DR, has been connecting and coordinating with DR volunteers serving across Oklahoma, including the hard-hit areas of Sulphur and Morris.

“Our DR response is up and running,” Yarbrough said. “We are trained, prepared and equipped to be able to serve people and communities at this great hour of need, all to demonstrate the love of Jesus.”

In Morris, DR’s base of operation is set up at Morris, Trinity, and there are four chainsaw teams and a feeding team (for volunteers) working. Approximately 40 homes received damage in Morris alone.

The dramatic images from Sulphur caught national attention, and Yarbrough noted that “response is up and running at Sulphur with our operations set up at Calvary Baptist Church. There, we have four chainsaw teams and a feeding team providing meals for community and our volunteers. We also have a shower trailer and laundry trailer set up for our volunteers.” As of May 1, around 60 work order requests already have been received in Sulphur.

Yarbrough noted that DR teams from Arkansas and Texas are coming to help Oklahoma Baptist DR volunteers. With more storms in the forecast, Yarbrough and the DR operation will be monitoring the weather and assessing damage in impacted areas.

Many people are now making tax-deductible donations to help Oklahoma Baptist DR serve storm victims. Financial donations can be made online at

Falls Creek hosts OG&E workers serving in Sulphur

When more than two dozen tornadoes were spotted on April 27, power outages affected communities across the state including the hard-hit area of Sulphur.

According to news sources, more than 1,000 personnel were working to restore power to communities across the state. That is why Oklahoma Baptists were approached with a unique role to play in the disaster response.

“OG&E contacted us and asked if we could house at Falls Creek (Conference Center in Davis) utility crews working in Sulphur,” said Todd Fisher Oklahoma Baptists executive director-treasurer. “We said absolutely and free of charge. Incredible job by (Falls Creek Conference Center Director) Chad Fielding and his team to get 200 rooms ready on short notice.”

According to Fielding, the Falls Creek staff, which was coming off hosting a series of major event retreats on the campgrounds in April, moved into action and got the rooms ready for the utility workers.

As an additional encouragement, Fielding and staff left snacks and a note with a Bible verse in each room to bless the weary workers, who have been serving long hours.

“When people learned about this on social media, we had so many reach out and thank us for showing hospitality. In our minds, it was just the right thing to do. We are blessed to have these facilities, and we wanted to be a blessing to others. It was an honor to help out in this key time in our state,” said Fielding.

In addition to Falls Creek-owned facilities being used, several churches offered use of their church-owned cabins at Falls Creek to host volunteer groups responding to the tornadoes.

Fisher added, “Grateful for the generosity of Oklahoma Baptists that makes things like this possible.”

Falls Creek Conference Center is owned and operated by Oklahoma Baptists and is home to the largest youth encampment in North America each summer, as well as events throughout the year.