About This Whole Thing

This blog is about one married couple who decided to pack up, throw caution to the wind, and head down to the Big (not so) Easy to lend a hand. We’ll be there for three months in a no holds barred attempt to bring some brotherly love to those less fortunate than us.

MIKE…
Mike got his start in the late seventies. A “crick” lovin’ Ohioan born and raised, he grew up with many role models ranging from his loving family to Superman to Yoda. He does the whole art thing for money–well, did, until he left his job to do this, and very much hopes to do art again once he gets back. He loves Jesus, takes life as it comes and, among other things, has a penchant for weaving quotes from various pop culture references into his dialogue.

Mike first went down to New Orleans with twenty five other wonderful people (including his wife) in early January. Seeing the devastation first hand and amount of work left to be done, he decided a longer commitment would be worthwhile, despite the weighty sacrifice of leaving friends, family and everything he loves behind.

LORA…
Lora had great plans to move to New York City to enter the art scene, painting and making movies. But Jesus had other plans for her life and in 1999, he introduced himself to her. She decided he was a heck of a lot cooler than modern art so she stayed in Columbus, got herself hitched and volunteers lots at her church.

Lora’s fascination with New Orleans started in middle school when she read “Gambit,” a comic book adventure about several of the X-Men trying to survive in the Big Easy. Her fascination turned into full blown obsession in high school when she read N’wallins’ native Anne Rice’s “Vampire Chronicles.” When she finally visited the city in 2004, Lora found it every bit as curious and beautiful as she’d thought it would be– but also far more tragic than she could have imagined: poverty, violence and segregation surround the historic, touristy hot spots that most people recognize.

From that day on, she knew she wanted to go back not to find vampires, but to help people. When Katrina devastated the city, she decided to stop thinking about doing something and actually do it.

WHAT WE’LL BE DOING…
An organization called Mercy Response receives fifty to sixty volunteer missionaries from all over the country each week who come to rip apart flooded houses in New Orleans. In January, we were a part of one such team. We saw that Mercy Response needed help running such a large scale operation and decided to offer our services.

WHEN WE’LL BE DOWN THERE…
If all goes according to plan, we’ll pack up our tiny old Honda Civic on the morning of June 7th, and drive 16 hours down to the Big Easy. We plan to stay three months, through the end of summer, with an estimated return in late August or very early September.

WHY WE ARE DOING THIS…
At a point in our lives when we ought to enjoy “the American dream,” remodel our home, up-size our cars, and strive for that promotion at work, we decided we’d rather take a risk for a good cause. We are told that Jesus is often sighted hanging out with the poor, the widows, and the destitute–and right now New Orleans is certainly full of people in need! Being big fans of Jesus, we decided to follow him to the Big Easy, wanting to see him do the crazy stuff he’s been rumored to do from time to time.

And we’re hoping he’ll use us to do it.