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      Central New York churches gear up to serve victims of Oklahoma tornadoes

      With all of the devastation in the Midwest, especially in Oklahoma, in the last ten days, there are many opportunities to get involved and help people pick up the pieces of their shattered lives.

      We see the rampant destruction and feel moved for these people and the lives lost. The community of faith in Central New York is taking those sentiments a step further, turning them into action in the form of shovels, sweat, and a desire to truly help those in need.

      Abundant Life Christian Center is at the forefront of these relief efforts, and they will be joining with five other area churches to bring that tangible relief that is so sorely needed in tornado alley.

      Mark Haywood, manager of Missions and Outreach at Abundant Life, joined Laura Hand on Weekend Today in Central New York to talk about the trip to Moore, and how they plan to help.

      "The community of faith in Central New York is so moved with compassion for the hurting families of Oklahoma we want to help in any way we can," Haywood said. "For each home destroyed by the tornados, there is a family with hopes and dreams that is right now struggling to figure out where to begin. God loves them and he needs ordinary people to give and go lend a hand in turning relief into recovery"

      The help will be needed more than ever, as tornadoes again swept through Oklahoma last night, injuring scores and killing at least five.

      The Central New York faith community will be heading into these disaster zones, trying to bring hope in these seemingly hopeless times.

      If you want to donate funds towards the relief effort, click here for Abundant Life Christian Center's website and click on the Oklahoma Relief banner.

      Haywood says the vast majority of the funds are going directly to the people of Oklahoma, with the churches underwriting almost all of the costs accrued on the trip.