... Though no one from Lahaina United Methodist died, members have friends who did. And Crewe estimated that about 75% of the church’s families have lost their homes.
Among them is Rosalyn “Roz” Baker, a former Hawaii state senator who played electric piano for Lahaina United Methodist’s services. She was glad to be able to strum a borrowed ukulele in an Aug. 20 service that Crewe led in a condominium center’s community room.
“Even in all the stress, there are bright spots,” said Baker, who has found temporary lodging on the island. “It’s nice to see our congregation in particular has come together and is going to be doing whatever is necessary to rebuild.”
Ala Lani United Methodist is about a 30-minute drive from Lahaina in Kahului. A few members there live in Lahaina and lost homes. But mostly, Ala Lani members have been balancing grief at their neighboring community’s loss of life and property with trying to help in any way possible.
“Tessie Layugan, the lay leader of Ala Lani, had many relatives and friends who lived in Lahania and lost their homes,” said the Rev. SonHye Kim, senior pastor of Ala Lani. “Tessie took 13 people, from a 1-year-old to an 80-year-old grandma, in her house instead of sending them to shelters. Church members provided them with clothing, food and other necessities.”