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Okla. Southern Baptist relief teams on stand-by

OKLAHOMA CITY — Hurricane Sandy is pushing toward the most populated corridor in the U.S. Fifty million Americans are in her path.

Destruction is certain and Oklahomans will soon be on the way.

The Disaster Relief Team from the Oklahoma Baptist General Convention is packed up and ready to go.

Forty to 60 volunteers will head to the hardest hit areas of the northeast as soon as the storm surge settles.

The Southern Baptist Convention has trained 5,000 Oklahoma volunteers who are ready for the call to help.

State Director Sam Porter plans to head to New Jersey later this week as soon as relief workers will be allowed into the most damage areas.

Teams from Oklahoma will serve 10 to 14 days in the region.

“We don’t receive any government help,” Porter said. “We are a faith-based group going in and saying, ‘Hey if we can make a difference in your life, that’s what we’re going to do no matter what it takes.'”

The Southern Baptist chainsaw crews will help in snow packed areas.

The mud teams will go to areas hardest hit by flooding.

Porter said working in the northeast is always exciting because communities aren’t often expecting faith-based help.

“Some of them say they’ve never heard of us and I say we’re actually the second largest denomination in the U.S. behind Roman Catholic. Believe me,” Porter said with a laugh.

Relief teams seek out neighborhoods to help the elderly, uninsured, military and single-parent families.