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Spirit Lake Tribe, North Dakota

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The Dakota Baptist Church in Fort Totten got help from as far away as Florida and Louisiana in rebuilding after Devils Lake flooding. The Rev. Wilbert Robertson said he asked the Baptist Church Association for help. "It was an emergency. We had four sump pumps in the basement. We were starting to get mildew and it was getting worse. The only thing keeping us going was the sump pumps. They went all year until it froze." After details were worked out with the tribal council, a group from Fort Pierce, Fla., arrived in late June to pour the foundation for a new church, followed by a group from the Jonesville, West Monroe, Oak Grove and Bastrop, La., areas and a third group, from Lutz, Fla., came in early July to finish interior work. Robertson said the church also is getting help from First Baptist Church in Devils Lake. "We're just a group of people working together," said the Rev. Mike Howard, one of the Southern visitors. Some miss their crawfish and gifts and have developed an aversion to wood ticks, but are enjoying their stay. "We'll leave here being helped a whole lot more than what we've helped - the blessings, the teamwork. It's a joy."