Disaster Response, Churches, and UMCOR

Here’s how we are changing lives. FEMA depends on a number of religious groups for their expertise when disaster strikes, and each religious group has unique abilities. Through excellent communication with FEMA and each other, there is no duplication.

UMCOR, the United Methodist response group, specializes in case management, emergency kits such as cleaning buckets, and volunteers. Not only do we have a volunteer army of 20,000 people for early response teams who muck out homes, we have even more Mission trip leaders and participants. 

Trained volunteer case managers help families navigate the maze of aid and insurance to rebuild their lives. These case managers then work with our regular mission teams who do the rebuilding.  These volunteer hours are counted at $25 per hour towards the ~10% that states are supposed to match towards federal disaster aid. 

Already in Texas, over 6,000 homes have been “mucked” out by the specially trained advance UM volunteer teams, and 28,000 cleaning buckets are waiting to be shipped to Puerto Rico when that becomes possible.

Grace and Peace, Kim

What Do We Expect?

What do we expect?  Often we influence others by what we expect them to do. If we decide ahead of time that someone will laugh at us or turn us down, we tend not to invite them to church.  Or, if we expect that it is normal for teens and young adults to drop out of church we do little to reverse that.

Let God’s love challenge your expectations. Jesus did not give up on anyone. What if we had so many teens attending or young adults that they looked forward to seeing their friends on Sunday?  What if we “got it” that faith gets more important the older we get.  After all, it is people over age 12 who make the most life changing decisions that affect not only themselves, but their peers, families, and friends.

We already have some plans in place to improve Sunday school this year.  We are making further plans to be in an even better position to help teens and adults grow in their faith, and enjoy life giving Christian fellowship.

Will you pray for these plans?  Will you commit to a daily devotion time and/or a Bible study time with others?  It starts with you and me!  But I know Jesus expects great things and is eager to empower them.

Grace and Peace, Kim

“Every Child Counts” School – How you can support this mission

On Sunday Aug 12th,  Bruce and Jane Werner shared in their message the ministry they helped with back in the early 2000’s involving the school for disadvantaged children “Every Child Counts” in The Bahamas.  If you would like to learn more about the school, click everychildcountsabaco.org to get to their website.

Several people after the service asked how they might donate funds to the school.  The best way is to make checks payable to: “Every Child Counts” and mail to: Every Child Counts  P.O. Box AB 20085, Marsh Harbour,  Abaco,  Bahamas   It is 84 cents postage for a 1 oz letter to The Bahamas.

For additional information on mailing amounts over $250 or to receive tax receipts, go to the school’s donation page: http://www.everychildcountsabaco.org/how-to-donate/

Thank you for your interest.

UM ARMY Youth and Adults Talk about the Mission Trip

During Sunday worship the message was the youth and adults talking about a) what they each did; b) where they saw God; and c) what they liked the best.  I videotaped MOST of the messages, but unfortunately, my iPhone ran out of memory before everyone spoke.  Apologies to Megan McIntyre, Sophie and Nora Hatch, and Joe Kwiatkowski who all gave wonderful messages as well.

Written comments from some of those not on the video:

Nora Hatch: One of the things that was hard for us was our homeowner got sick and had to go to the hospital.  We told the whole camp and the whole camp prayed for his healing.  We were so grateful to see that he was released from the hospital the next day. We were very fond of him, his wife, and their cute dogs.

Joe Kwiatkowski: “My role at UMARMY was providing the music during worship services.  Being able to see all the different groups on the program team, I saw God in the interactions between the different groups and the people they did work for. My favorite moment was meeting a client who had met my godmother because the client’s sister owned a flower shop my godmother would do deliveries for on busy holidays. “

North Ferrisburgh Community Tag Sale on June 24th

On June 24th, the Old Hollow neighborhood is hosting a community tag sale at 16 locations involving 18 households on Sat, June 24th from 8am to 3pm.  The map (downloadable as a pdf) shows the sale locations as red stars with various landmarks.  The table (also downloadable as a pdf) lists the items for sale at each location.

tag sale map

tag sale items by location

If you have questions, call Lou McLaren at 802 578-1569.

Please note:  there is no parking at the church as there is a memorial service that day.