Missions House Fire Update

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From Mick Richards, Jesus Week Director/Media Missions

Hello ministry friends, family and partners. A few of you may have already heard, but I wanted to officially share what has happened. As many of you know, I work in media missions serving non-profits, community/city transformation initiatives and work on many independent missions-related documentaries and short films as a result of it all.

This past week, our team’s missions house in Staten Island, NY, caught on fire in the early morning. All 3 of us made it out just in time, but the 2nd floor started to go up in flames as soon as we got out. Fire Rescue quickly showed up with 5 trucks and about 30 people, and immediately tore through the home, climbing the house and smashing windows to get inside. When it was all over, everything upstairs was completely burnt, demolished and destroyed. The rest of the house was smoke and water damaged. Everything in my 2nd floor room/home media production studio was completely destroyed.

For our NY missions director Melisa Page-Bailie, and Jordan, it has been a very difficult and tragic experience, but they are moving forward with a great spirit assessing their damage. For myself, I can tell you that I was left stunned and without words at my damage.

Unfortunately, the home owners insurance will not cover my personal property or editing/media equipment, so I suffered a complete loss. On top of that, all of my hard drives and back-up drives where also in the room at the time, as I was in the process of backing them up before leaving the country on a missions filming trip. Every one of them was severely damaged by the fire and firehose water/mud.

This is a devastating blow…not necessarily just for the equipment and property…but for 20 years of data content, documentaries, stories, artistry, passion and invaluable collections of mission-focused heart moments and irreplaceable transformed lives captured and stored in those hard drives. Multiple series of documentaries and short films that were never-before-seen and in the process for public release were included.

But we are all very thankful no one was hurt. You can’t replace life. Although a severe blow personally in my world, God continues to give much peace and clarity to see things in a balanced and centered perspective. So for now, I’m focusing on Phase 1 of trying to get back on mission with replaced equipment, and Phase 2 of trying to get critical data/film footage restored to continue and finish existing productions…one drive at a time.

However…the data recovery company has given us hope, as they specialize in fire and hurricane damage. So I have been cleaning each drive one at a time and packaging them to send out to be diagnosed. For every master hard drive (about 25 of them), I have been diligent to maintain a back-up drive for each (another 25). Therefore, we have 2 chances of recovery per master drive. So while replacing the editing equipment will be one kind of challenge…restoring the data will take much more prayer, faith and provision.

Friends of Melisa have set up a GoFundMe to help in her time of loss, and I encourage Melisa’s family and friends to visit: https://gofund.me/935d5d93

For myself, the damage is quite extensive. Anyone who feels led to help, please visit: The Prayer Covenant’s Campaign: https://gofund.me/ce8c0f12 or Urban Hope’s Campaign: https://gofund.me/4217c029 – where you can find more details.
These two beloved non-profit partners, The Prayer Covenant & Urban Hope NYC, have graciously offered to help raise half the estimated costs each through two GoFundMe campaigns. All donations go through their non-profits and tax-deductible, and 100% gets applied to this cause.
If you would like to be more familiar with what I do and what kinds of things are on those drives, you can see many samples at: https://vimeo.com/buildingadifference
Finally, so many of you have been faithfully following myself, our team and the Building a Difference Media Ministry as we have been serving missions movements over the years. Thank you so much for your past and present friendship, prayers and support. This incident has a great potential to be turned around and to be the start of an even stronger and more powerful mission moving forward. We pray for God’s victory, purposes and glory to be brilliantly displayed as a result.
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