I am part of a committee in my city to make future plans for disaster preparedness. When Hurricane Irene hit us in 2011, faced unprecedented flooding. They can be turned off for most of the city to prevent electrocution. Most of this water is severely polluted with sewage. At that time, I was a brand new water damage restoration company. I had been certified a few months. Public Works Department of the city and FD were busy taking care of municipal properties first. Residences, like mine which had more than 1,000 gallons of sewage backup were left to fend for about 48 hours. In my own home, I had my car off the pump in my laundry utility twice, expected point of intrusion, before the storm began and pumping a window into the gutter. I woke up at 5am when power is turned off because the pump UPS rang. I have a manual transfer switch and a 3500 watt generator in place, so I ran, shot my generator and flipped the switch. Less than 10 gallons of sewage hit the basement. Most of my neighbors were not so lucky. I pumped many for free as a goodwill gesture. In the case of a Catholic church beyond the line of the city where I live, I gave about 2,000 dollars worth of damage restoration services for free water at a flooded section of his elementary school. It was never officially thanked. My wife's family are all members of that church and the people contacted me to know what he did for a living to provide emergency assistance to the school. So back to the meetings with the city. One thing that was mentioned several churches to talk to them about assistance in a time of emergency to the community. The Catholic church I attended in 2011 that there was no need to return my call. Another Catholic church within the city limits was "prayers" and a collection of used clothing was enough to support the emergency needs of the community. The Congregational Church, a member of the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference, unlike most of the Congregational churches that are known to be really progressive, also told me that the main help we got was "prayers". Limited funds, bla, bla, bla. Just curious, I will attend church services on Sunday. I do not expect to see many of the poor, the young and people of color. My own faith, Presbyterian, is across the street from the Congregational church and is mostly white, upper middle class conservatives. His response was similar and not unexpected. The only church that was open was very progressive, liberal Unitarian Universalist church. I actually talked about getting a permanent backup generator so that the parish can be a place of refuge for those in need. He referred to a Generac dealer / installer. They asked about my training and if the training I received was available to people outside the industry, as volunteers. You and I have already contacted you received most of my training and certification. I said it was not a rich church, but the community service is a cornerstone of their faith and their desire to participate in discussions with the city, so we invited them to come to the next planning meeting. Others have not yet responded. Only volunteer spoke and put real money in your prayers. That's not impressive statistics. I have faith in my list to contact as well. I hope to have a more encouraging. Sorry for the long post. Those of you who have reading difficulties please comment irrelevant and ignorant, I expect nothing less from you. Basically … I just skimmed through your very long "question" to notice that you did not mention any group calling atheists. I feel I had problems, but where I live what you describe is not the case, the churches are very active in the community, and when I say community I mean driving 300 miles to help with Katrina recovery, sending volunteers to Haiti, sending food, cloths, people Tornado damage recovery. My church also has a mission to work each year in Mexico and Honduras and sponsors missionaries to many countries.leave a response, or trackback from your own site.