Church of God takes in Irma evacuees as storm continue north

TIFTON, GA (WBTV) - As Hurricane Irma continues to wreak havoc in Florida, the rain and the wind is gradually picking up in South Georgia. The area is full evacuees trying to escape the storm, but they'll still likely feel some of Mother Nature's power on Monday.

"Between the storm surge and the flooding and the wind, Brunswick is not a safe place to be," Donna Steele said.

Steele didn't even question leaving her home behind, but she does worry about her loved ones still there.

"It's tough. It's stressful and you don't know what you're going back to and the people that stayed, what happened to them," she said.

Steele is in one of the many rooms being offered to evacuees at the South Georgia Church of God campgrounds in Tifton, Georgia.

Jennifer and Chad Middleton found themselves in a similar situation when they had to evacuate last year for Hurricane Matthew.

"If we stayed there was a good chance it would totally take out our trailer," Jennifer said.

Church of God state youth director Matt Propes says they have 100 evacuees staying on the grounds who are all very uncertain about their lives back home.

"Not knowing where the storms going to hit, when the storms going to hit, what the impact is going to be. I think everyone is glued to a television," he said.

But faith seems to be fueling the group. Sunday morning, they traded their church sanctuaries for a gymnasium where they held services.

"We're digging our feet in and putting our trust in God and that's the plan," Jennifer said.

The evacuees brought with them food, clothes and a few memories. One man showed off a tattered Bible he couldn't leave behind.

"This is my bible and this is my prayer list. This bible I have read so many times, it's old," he said.

What's left of Hurricane Irma is expected to hit South Georgia Monday afternoon.

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