Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | September 23, 2017

Proud To Call Katy Home

To say the past month has been a blur would be an understatement. The days on my calendar started to melt together as soon as Hurricane Harvey passed through and left destruction in its wake. And yet, in spite of the long days of fielding dozens of disaster-related phone calls and hundreds of emails a day, the past month has illustrated what it is that Christ-followers do best.

I love Jesus and I love my neighbors and our community. One of the hallmarks of Jesus’ life is that He always moved in the direction of people in need — and, by so doing, made a difference in their lives. As soon as Harvey hit our area our Katy churches followed the example of Jesus and swiftly moved in the direction of people in need.

From the early days when I had the opportunity to assist with boat rescues to coordinating lots of disaster related work and connecting resources with need, the most obvious take away is this — good and selfless neighboring is What makes America great and what shows a hurting community the beauty of Jesus.

Did we do a lot of good? Absolutely! Did we get everything right? No. As with all major initiatives that serve thousands in times of crisis, there are always things we miss. And there are always things we wish we could fix with just a wave of the hand. But, that’s not how things work in times of crisis. It really is hard work meeting needs.

Rescuing folks stranded in their homes by boat, for example, took hours rather than minutes per household. The same holds true for mucking out homes and distributing clothing and other supplies and feeding people and more. Volunteers worked countless — and I do mean way too many hours to count — hours helping folks in need in so many ways. But because they did, needs were met one by one.

It’s been weeks and the work is still not over yet. Teams are still mucking out homes, trash piles are being slowly addressed, people are waiting on insurance and federal resources to start the rebuilding process, resources are still being distributed, people who lost vehicles are trying to figure out transportation, and so much more. But, the day will come when everyone impacted by Harvey will look back on all this and finally breathe a sigh of relief.

And the day will come when folks look back on all of this and remember those who moved in their direction at their time of need — the guys in the boat, the muck-out crews, the volunteers who distributed clothing and food, to name a few. Hopefully we will all remember what united us and refuse to make room in our hearts for the things that tend to separate us.

I am proud of our churches, the non-profits in our community, and all of the good people who lived out the parable of the Good Samaritan. In the words of Martin Luther King, Jr, we all witnessed dangerous unselfishness on display. Like the Good Samaritan, folks asked the right question, “What will happen to that person in need if I fail to move in their direction to help.”

Thank you to all who have selflessly served and loved others in our community. You are what makes our community great and what makes America great. I am proud to call Katy my home.


  1. I am proud to call you my friend, Omar. As much as we at Plymouth Park in Irving hated to lose you, we knew you were answering God’s call, and that truth has continued to ring out clearly over the past years. You are exactly where you needed to be. You would serve wherever God put you, but His wisdom was on display when he placed you in Katy.

    On a different thought, as I looked at the picture of the folks standing in their home, with the sheetrock cut away at the high water mark, it occurred to me that there’s always something for which to be grateful. In this case, I think we should all be grateful that very few folks in the south build basements!

  2. Omar, Last week I visited my son and his family in San Antonio, TX and we drove through Katy when we visited NASA in Houston. I saw some remnants of the hurricane, but was amazed at how much the area has recovered. God bless the God fearing people of TX. I am a Pittsburgh native myself, but love the big skies there. Megan

    • We are fortunate to be making so much progress due in large part to the willingness of folks to be good neighbors and Christ-followers to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

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