BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Miss Mary Parker used to be the lady in the community that family and neighbors could lean on in their time of need. Now the roles are reversed, and the community is going above and beyond to make sure she and her family are taken care of - starting with a benefit concert Friday night.
A blaze that took away all Parker's material possessions could not destroy her spirit or that of her family and friends.
Friday, the Parker family and the community gathered at Greater Mt. Canaan Baptist Church to thank God for the lives that escaped that fire unharmed and to help the Parkers start rebuilding.
"We ought to come together as a community. When one is in trouble, then everybody ought to feel like they're in trouble. Am I my brother's keeper? Yes, I'm my brother's keeper," said Councilwoman C. Denise Marcelle.
While music filled the sanctuary, blessings were rolling in right next store in the church's multipurpose room. People donated clothes, food, even brand-new bicycles.
"The outpouring of love from this community, from this city has just been unbelievable. The family is very grateful, and I'm just glad I'm a part to witness what God is doing in this community," said Rev. Levi Wright, pastor of Greater Mt. Canaan Baptist Church.
A lady and her 23 family members who could have given up hope after the fire, relied on their faith and friends instead.
"Also there's Christmastime coming up," said Rev. Wright. "The children need Christmas toys, Christmas gifts. We thank you for what you've done thus far, but we're also asking those that can and can afford to and if God touch your heart...help make these children Christmas a blessing."
An account has been set up at Chase Bank in Rev. Wrights's name because the victims lost their identification. The account number is 2919072350.