Thursday, June 12, 2008

Iowa River Flood Update 6: Evacuation

The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Today at 3:30 pm, in the midst of continued fervent efforts, city officials informed us that last nights heavy rains will result in the Iowa River cresting on Tuesday at 35 feet. This will put river water close to roof level. Hearing the news was difficult. All hopes on saving our facility were lost and emergency evacuation began immediately.

It is difficult to loose a facility that was laced with so many meaningful memories over the last 9 years, but in many ways the loss generates a deeper appreciation for those things that matter most, namely our faith in the sovereign hand of God and our appreciation for the body of Christ. Fond memories of working side by side with my brothers and sisters in Christ over these last three days have been very rich. New friendships have been formed and a greater appreciation for the value of community has been cultivated.

This photo shows how high the waters had grown throughout the night.

The south side of our facility.

Our massive pumping station.

A boat parked in the handicapped parking stalls with diesel intended to refuel the emergency generator.

This photo captures how sandbaggers were bagging right next to the flood waters. Our parking lot was closed from parking in order to keep baggers working throughout the morning.

The view from the main entrance of our facility.

This meaningful piece of artwork was removed as part of the evacuation effort.

The atrium emptied of most fixtures and technology.

Our Boston grand piano was removed via fork lift over the flood waters.

A little after 9:00 pm, Jim Douglass (our administrator) and I shut down the water, turned off the master electric panel and walked out the northwest office door into ankle deep water. One chapter ends and a new one begins.


George & Julie Halitzka said...

Scott, we're really sorry to hear that Parkview is likely to go underwater. ]-: Our prayers are with you guys, particularly as you do worship on the road this weekend . . . and make decisions about what to do next.

Thaddeus said...

This is so heartbreaking. Thank you for faithfully posting pictures for everybody that couldn't be down in the church the last few days.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the pictures. I'm so sad that all your work may be in vain, but I'm praying it won't be.

Anonymous said...

My heart hurts. Thank you so much for your leadership this past week. You are a true shepherd of the flock. JBoats

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all your hard work. You and the entire staff are in my prayers. Lori M.

emily said...

I'm praying like crazy. It's hard to be away and to hear and see all that is going on. Thanks for keeping us all updated. I'm so sorry that this is happening but God's purposes are greater and it's for His glory. He is laying out a foundation for His glory to be HUGE in this!

The Kac's said...

Brian and I as well as the staff at First E-Free in Austin are praying for you all. It saddens me to see what I consider my "home church" of Parkview under water.
-Emily (Pierce) Kacmarynski

Binkie Lassen said...

I am in tears as I view the photos. Parkview is our church away from home, the place where our oldest daughter was married, and home to four of my kids attending Uof I....It is hard for me to realize the total impact of this as I sit here in northwest Iowa.... But I do know that this is just a building, and that the spirit and the wonderful works of your church will continue on no matter where you relocate. We are thinking of all of you in the weeks to come.

Binkie Lassen, Sioux Center, Iowa

SEG said...

i was touched to see that our mural was removed...i thought about it but didn't think it was something to worry about. thanks to all of you who have worked tirelessly to preserve what you could of our church building.

Rachel B said...

This is such a reminder that a "church" is not a building. We are praying for you and for all those affected. Indianola is completely dry, so if Parkview wants to relocate to our back yard, we'd be glad to have all of you!!

Amy said...

I don't know you, but I am so sorry to hear about your church. I am sure that your community will pull itself up in this time and you will be able to recover. Good Luck to all of you. I heard about you from a friend and was directed to your blog. God's love be with you all.

Timothy Putnam said...


I was deeply grieved when I read the news. Our thoughts and prayers have been, and continue to be with you and the Parkview family. I know that even as we remember what is truly important, it is still a gut-wrenching emotional experience. Thank you for these updates, We will continue lifting you up as you seek your new "home."

All our love,

Timothy, Kristin, and Israel Putnam

Doug said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Connie said...

Thanks, Doug, for all your words. You have lots of knowledge to share, God bless ya anyway! Scott, looking at your photos reminded me of the many areas of the building that I had set a paint brush to, that I had somehow taken ownership in and yet none of it matters now. It is also the anniversary of losing Bill and I was reminded of how 11 years ago it struck me so hard that he did not take his watch and wallet with him! The crazy thoughts we think!!! Then we are brought back to what matters. God will have His glory in this for sure!!!

Emily said...

Thanks for keeping us posted on everything! I've been praying that the church would be saved and it brought me to tears to think of the loss. It did bring a smile to my face to see the piano being safely taken out.

Anonymous said...

We are praying fervently for all of you in Iowa City. Many tears have been had from Montana, as we look at the church that was home to us. We miss you, and wish we could have been there to help alongside everyone else. We'll help from afar with prayers. We love you and miss you.

Kit and Sarah Stewart