The Baptist Crossroads Partnership
New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity’s long partnership with Baptist Crossroads–now called Crossroads NOLA–began in 2004, before Hurricane Katrina, with the organization committing to building 20 homes with our affiliate. This organization, initiated and nurtured by Dr. David Crosby, Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church in New Orleans, was crucial in the early stages of rebuilding in the city.
Baptist Crossroads was interested in Upper Ninth prior to failure of levees and flood walls because of their mission outreach to single mothers-in-need in the Florida Housing Projects. They approached NOAHH about building 20 houses for women who were successful in changing their life and getting out of the projects. Planning the partnership took place over the course of a year, and before land was acquired, Hurricane Katrina hit.
Though the flooding caused by the failed levees caused the project to be delayed, one of the first calls NOAHH Executive Director Jim Pate received (before phone service was even reliable in the city) was from Dr. Crosby:
“My every expectation was that he’d cancel his commitment,” Jim said. “Instead, he doubled it to 40 houses, and Baptist Crossroads organized support from across the country, and funded and recruited volunteers to build those 40 houses, among the first to be built after the failure of the levees.”
They have since remained in touch and explored other opportunities, including aging out of foster, transitional housing, and many other initiatives. Through it all, David Crosby has exemplified highest levels of Christian servant leadership. NOAHH was delighted to learn recently that Dr. Crosby was a candidate for the president of the Southern Baptist Convention. He knows and lives in a way that recognizes that church is not a building, it is a community and should be in the community. Congratulations, Dr. Crosby!