A Texas woman with a gift for gospel singing and a love for people has been lifting the spirits of displaced residents in shelters following Tropical Storm Harvey.
Evacuees at the Lone Star Convention & Expo Center in Conroe were treated to an inspiring respite from their ordeal when she arrived on the scene Tuesday, momentarily lifting the spirits of storm victims seeking shelter from the flooding caused by Harvey.
Victoria White along with a group of others belted out gospel songs amid rows of beds and cots at the shelter, and was filmed by volunteer Joni Villemez-Comeaux who posted the video to Facebook where it has been viewed over 16 million times.
So this just broke out in the shelter…
Posted by Joni Villemez-Comeaux on Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Villemez-Comeaux, a clinical director at a mental health facility in Houston, shared that White’s performance was “spreading joy and your love of Jesus” and said she has a “beautiful, powerful voice” on her Facebook post.
An admissions counselor at Sam Houston State University, White and her fellow singers are part of the Others Outreach Mission, a Christian charity organization lending a hand with rescue relief efforts in Houston, according to the Daily Mail.
LIVE: Worship in Conroe Shelter
Posted by Victoria White on Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Unprecedented flooding from Harvey has lead to more than 13,000 people being rescued, and thousands being housed in shelters in Houston alone as Harvey dumped record-breaking rainfall since coming on shore as a category 4 hurricane last week.
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“This woman’s powerful voice, singing praise, lifted the Spirit of all within earshot,” Villemez-Comeaux wrote about White’s performance at the Lone Star Convention shelter. She shared that she was celebrating her 53rd birthday by serving flood victims when White arrived and began singing songs like William McDowell’s “Spirit Break Out.”
Not surprisingly, White has been inundated on her own Facebook page with comments, praise, and “friend” requests. She addressed them all in a post on Wednesday admitting that the viral video “blows me AWAY (and that’s no easy task)!”
But in the midst of the attention, White called on everyone to not lose sight of the main mission to help those in need from the Texas storm – or any other storms in people’s lives.
“Now, while I am blessed by this outpouring of love and support that I have gotten, PLEASE don’t let this take your focus off of serving!” White wrote. “Get out and SERVE if you can! If you’re in the Houston area and you can get out…..GO SERVE those who were impacted the most by this storm!”
Fellow singer Marquist Taylor told CNN’s Chris Cuomo that “people are everything” and he takes seriously his “duty and assignment” to love people.
SINGING OF PAIN AND THE POWER THAT GETS YOU THROUGH IT https://t.co/oTdgOorltN
— Christopher C. Cuomo (@ChrisCuomo) August 31, 2017
White and Taylor made other media appearances and even serenaded the viewers of ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Thursday.
WATCH: Gospel singers lift spirits in shelter, spreading hope across Texas after #Harvey: https://t.co/cWJShLm5CW #DayOfGiving pic.twitter.com/oGf0GSXgBz
— Good Morning America (@GMA) August 31, 2017
And White continued her mission Thursday with a stop at a shelter in her hometown of Livingston, where she belted out a powerful version of “Amazing Grace” joined by storm victim Patsy Morgan, according to CBS News.
“I was raised to be a good person,” White said. “You help your neighbors, you help the stranger who needs help. Because one day you’re going to be at the other end of that stick. And you’re going to need somebody’s help.”
With the millions of views of the video, there have also been countless comments on Facebook and Twitter, proving that the simple act of sharing a song from the heart has affected not only those suffering from a natural disaster but all those who have taken a few minutes to watch.
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I watched this over and over with tears running down my face
— fightrisk (@6yearstothemoon) August 31, 2017
Loved it❤️ it set my soul on??
— Shari Sheeley (@JudahSeed) August 31, 2017
That was truly touching. Nice to see.
— Christina (@TinaIsle) August 31, 2017
Those #gospel singers are amazing!!
— Akua Hinds (@akuahinds) August 31, 2017
Loved that piece makes you smile and get teary eyed all at the same time that’s the power of the human heart and those two have it
— Alicia Ann (@AliciaAnnDewey1) August 31, 2017
This was wonderful. Encouraging and uplifting.
— DeBora Tyler (@tyler3debora) August 31, 2017
That voice – that soul. ??Gospel singer, #VictoriaWhite lifts spirits of flood evacuees in Texas shelter on tv.?Replay
— Liana Casanova (@LianaECasanova) August 31, 2017
I LOOOOVE IT!!! Keep singing Vickie, your voice is pushing the water back and making it go down
— Christie Mangum (@the5thspeaks) August 31, 2017
Amazing and so moving!
— jimbo (@BarbBbubba215) August 31, 2017
Beautiful! True joy comes from the soul defying the circumstances.
— Chrisann M Dawson (@ChrisannDawson) August 31, 2017
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