Our story: a season of disaster
After Hurricane Katrina, life as we knew it here in New Orleans was forever changed. The members of our church, Desire Street Fellowship (DSF: born out of Desire Street Ministries New Orleans in 1998) were scattered throughout the states. As months passed and the city gradually began to repopulate, a few also made the decision to relocate permanently, many in parts of Texas or in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
DSF families were struggling with day-to-day post-disaster questions of how to pay bills without a job, how to replace possessions lost in the flood, dealing with insurance companies and FEMA, and trying to help displaced family members thousands of miles away. In the midst of this, DSM’s school, Desire Street Academy, was relocating in Niceville, Florida as a boarding school, and many of our church members were a part of this effort. Needless to say, it was a trying time.
Not only had our church membership been physically torn apart, with several relocating to other cities, behind the scenes we were also undergoing an intense spiritual battle. Unfortunately, the enemy was at work, striking in our time of weakness. Many people began to feel burnt out; relationships became strained or broken. Without a formal church service or structure in place either in New Orleans or in Florida, DSF members sought out different church homes and gradually the church and its ministry programs dissolved.
…a fellowship of healing
As time passed, many who had returned to New Orleans began to feel the Lord pulling our hearts with conviction of the need for for reconciliation among this particular segment of the body of Christ, and also for restoration of his church and ministry programs in the 9th ward. A small group began to meet for prayer and Bible study at the former site in New Orleans, with the hopes of regaining a unity back among the embattled believers. Through these times of fellowship, God began to grow in this group the vision to re-plant this church and its various ministries to the community here in the 9th ward. After meeting together for several months, we held our first morning worship service on Easter Sunday, 2011.
So, we begin this new chapter of 2nd generation ministry here in the 9th ward of New Orleans with a new name, simply: Desire Fellowship.