Over the summer, we took students to The Philadelphia Project. While at the project, our students had the opportunity to serve on the Mercy Ministries Track where they… Assisted in feeding the homeless and helping …
. . . and Say Farewell to Pastors KyungMo and SunAe Koo From Beth Auman, Staff-Parish Relations Chair In May our District Superintendent was asked if Pastor Koo and Pastor Lee-Koo would consider an appointment …
As Hurricane Dorian continued to threaten the U.S. east coast, United Methodists were connecting with Methodists in the Bahamas to start relief efforts.
The Bahamas Conference of the Methodist Church already is fielding requests to help those being evacuated from the “unprecedented devastation” to receive basic supplies and find a place to live, says its president, the Rev. L. Carla Culmer.
But the survivors also need someone to hear their stories. “We want to see how we can counsel and listen and be there for them,” she told UM News in a Sept. 5 phone interview.
After striking the island nation on Sept. 1, Hurricane Dorian caused “vast devastation” and left 70,000 people in need of immediate humanitarian relief, says Mark Lowcock, head of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
The United States has experienced more than 200 confirmed tornadoes, as well as a devastating blizzard, damaging winds, rainfall and hail this year.
Today’s superstorms need an organized response – and that is what UMCOR is doing.
UMCOR’s board of directors recently authorized the distribution of $20,236,883 in funds for U.S. disaster response, touching 10 states from Iowa to Florida, Nebraska to Alabama, as well as Puerto Rico.
Funding is provided by thousands of donors like you, each giving as they can. Your support is needed to ensure UMCOR continues its organized response.
Please help our neighbors today!
CURRENT DISASTER RESPONSE
UMCOR and our partners are responding to disasters both in the United States and around the world. Please join us in prayer for the areas affected and consider a gift to UMCOR Disaster Response. As we assess the impact of these storms, we will provide timely updates as we receive information. We will also share additional ways in which you can provide assistance.
Wildfires in California
As thousands flee wildfires in California, UMCOR is in close conversation with the disaster response coordinators of the California-Pacific and California-Nevada Conferences of The United Methodist Church.
UMCOR is already actively engaged in California in response to previous wildfires and we anticipate supporting both conferences as they identify and respond to the needs of the populations affected by the current wildfires.
We pray for the safety of the firefighters and first responders as well as those evacuating their homes. UMCOR stands ready to support the response of the conferences with relief kits, Early Response Teams, and funding.
Hurricane Michael on the Gulf Coast
We are proud to say that because of UMCOR’s investment in disaster response training, our partners are better prepared to reduce risk and respond effectively to the needs of survivors.
UMCOR partners have begun their local response in the Alabama-West Florida, South Georgia and Florida Conferences. Other neighboring conferences have provided assistance, and all were well prepared to respond quickly using UMCOR response training and the UMCOR supply network.
Affected Conferences are not yet ready to receive out-of-conference volunteers. We remind those wishing to provide assistance to please not self-deploy or donate unsolicited items. Many areas are still engaged in emergency response efforts.
Before Hurricane Michael made landfall, Conference Disaster Response Coordinators were in touch with local leaders and secured a 35,000ft2 warehouse in Marianna, FL with necessary equipment to expeditiously stock and distribute relief supplies.
Moreover, the Conference was awarded a $10,000 solidarity grant which partners are using to support evacuees and survivors in the impact zone. Assessments are underway and continue to expand as more residential areas open to response teams. Many church structures have been damaged or destroyed. Partners continue to receive relief supplies from UMCOR warehouses.
For more information please visit, hurricanemichaelrecovery.org, or call 888-942-4477 (please note this line should be used for information relating to the Alabama-West Florida Conference only).
In South Georgia assessments are underway and partners have deployed a shower trailer, clean-up supplies and water. Early Response Teams are mobilizing, including teams from both South Georgia and North Georgia Conferences. Local churches and partners are assembling additional cleaning kits for immediate use.
Local partners and volunteers have responded to the needs of those affected by Hurricane Florence in unprecedented ways. ERTs are active in both the South Carolina and North Carolina Conferences. Partners have delivered supplies and kits throughout the region and local churches continue to assist with damage assessments and relief efforts.
We are asking that those wishing to assist please do not self-deploy or donate unsolicited items. Affected conferences are managing their responses locally and will make requests for materials and response teams as they continue their assessments.
In North Carolina and South Carolina, long-term recovery volunteer teams are still needed in response to previous disasters, providing opportunities for those wishing to assist immediately while the Conferences continue to assess the specific needs from Hurricane Florence.
UMCOR U.S. Disaster Response teams are hard at work not only in the Carolinas and Gulf Coast, but across the country. Often, our partners work in places affected by disasters that do not receive substantial media attention. Explore the many places UMCOR partners are currently assisting in disaster response on the map below.
UMCOR Around the World
Earthquakes and Tsunami in Indonesia
UMCOR is fortunate to consistently work with many partners in Indonesia. We are currently coordinating with partners on the ground to address immediate needs of vulnerable people affected by the earthquakes and tsunami. We have been in contact with Methodist Church leadership to support assessment, initial relief work and further evaluation and prioritization of needs as we reach recovery phases.
Since 2017, UMCOR has trained and funded Disaster Management teams in order to empower communities to proactively alleviate suffering caused by the effects of disasters. Their work allows for communities’ advance awareness and preparedness, aligning with the efforts of other conference teams and ecumenical councils from across the region.
At a national level, this initiative ensures that the maximum number of people are prepared for a storm’s impact. Moreover, the Manilla, Davao and Baguio Episcopal Area offices continue to distribute daily weather advisories to community leaders.
UMCOR IDR has authorized a 10,000 USD Solidarity grant to address immediate needs in the most hard hit provinces of Baguio while the Disaster Management Coordinators in the Philippines continue to work with their communities after Typhoon Mangkhut and maintain their assessment of damages and analysis of needs.
From Beverly Perella, Children’s Ministry Coordinator
Children in Kindergarten through Grade 5 will gather for Sunday School on September 15, at 10:10 am.
Every year there is the question as to when is the best time for Sunday School for this age group. Our decision for continuing it at 10:10 is based on the fact that children in this age bracket learn better in a group setting. They can interact, share ideas, and participate in group activities.
Thus, we’re asking parents to commit to our Sunday School program by either staying after the Contemporary Service or by arriving 50 minutes earlier than the time for our Traditional Worship. Our Nursery Staff will continue to prepare weekly lessons with the curriculum from Cokesbury Press. These lessons will be offered at 9, 10:10, and 11 am as needed.
Over the summer, we took students to The Philadelphia Project. While at the project, our students had the opportunity to serve on the Mercy Ministries Track where they…
Assisted in feeding the homeless and helping with a food pantry
painted a room in a home, and
cooked food for a community BBQ.
When we returned from serving throughout the city, our youth were able to experience worship with about 100 other students and hear a message about the powerful statements that were made in the Bible through the burning bush and the I AM statements made by Jesus.
The students who went on this trip all agreed that this was a major highlight of their summers and a major stepping stone in their spiritual development.
We also had a couple of events that were well-attended not only by our students, but also the friends of our students. We had a pool party and a movie night with a campfire. Thank you to the Kauffman family for hosting our students on both occasions.
In August, we had a Back-to-School Celebration. Our students invited friends and members of the community to come and play various water games.
On September 15, our students will be celebrating our church anniversary along with church members and friends.
• • •
We will be having a major fundraiser — a Spaghetti Dinner, on October 5. The youth will begin selling tickets in September. This fundraiser is to offset the cost of our summer missions trip. It would be greatly appreciated if you would attend! If you’re not available on that day or not a fan of spaghetti, please feel free to make a donation.
“I have been praying about reaching more people with the love of Christ in our community.”
Greetings to you in our Lord’s name!
The summer season is soon to end. It has been a busy summer for Christy and me with our move to a new home, settling in, and getting to know our new church family.
It has also been a wonderful two months with many of you reaching out to us with your love and appreciation. We have treasured your prayers and support. I have been especially encouraged by your faithful attendance and by the many visitors who’ve worshipped with us in the past weeks. I am also delighted that some are coming back to worship with us regularly.
We thank God for leaders such as Mark Villecco and the Praise Team who do an excellent job leading our Contemporary Worship experiences. We also uplift our youth who had a great experience with the Philadelphia project this summer under the leadership of Kyle Robbins. I am also grateful for the wonderful team of volunteers led by Bev Perella for their excellent work in offering a great VBS ministry to the church family and community. The Mini-Concerts over the summer months have been exceptional. There are many others who have contributed greatly to the life of our congregation and I am grateful to God for you all.
I would like to thank all those who are giving their time, resources, and effort to make this year’s Anniversary Sunday a success. I especially thank Barb Leas and the Nurture Committee for their leadership.
The Rev. Cliff Flick and his wife Wendy Flick will be with us on our AnniversarySunday, September 15. Please join us that Sunday for worship, followed by a great picnic and music in the afternoon! We offered special dedication prayers for students and teachers on September 1. I pray for God’s blessings upon our children and teachers and all those involved in education ministry as they start another school year.
In other news, the Pastor’s Office has moved back to the current Library from the second floor of the Church Office building. I truly appreciate the hard work of our Trustees, led by Richard Bashore and Bob McFeaters, who have helped to make this decision and all the volunteers who have worked along with them to move the office. Jim and Roe Gehman have also helped to paint the walls in the office. Carl Madeira’s meticulousness in caring for our facilities is so valued, and I am grateful. Let me also express my thanks to Marilyn Seiders who coordinates everything with such care in the Church Office. As I write this article sitting in my new office, let me say, everything looks beautiful and thank you everyone for all your great work! We have so many dedicated volunteers in our church!
I have been praying about reaching more people with the love of Christ in our community. Some of you have invited your friends, neighbors, and relatives to join us for our worship experiences. Sharing God’s love with others in this way will allow us to continue building a wonderful church family. We as a church have shown our radical Christian hospitality to everyone, especially to visitors when they have come to our church. Many who have visited have mentioned to me that we are a welcoming and hospitable congregation. I am so proud to be serving a congregation so committed to radical Christian love!
May God continue to bless us all that we may be a blessing to others.