Dear Friends -
In the last several weeks we have watched as a chain of natural disasters struck. Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas resulting in massive flooding. Then Hurricane Irma left destruction through the Caribbean, the Keys, and Florida. Hurricane Maria again created havoc in the Caribbean. In Puerto Rica roads are blocked, cell phone towers are destroyed and officials have been unable to make a full assessment of the damage. And then there was the massive earthquake in Mexico.
With each new tragedy, you have responded with compassion and generosity. Gifts toward disaster relief have been coming in, and each week someone asks me if we are still collecting funds for that purpose. That shows compassion has not diminished with the passing of time. And YES, your church is still receiving relief funds for all these needs.
In addition to direct relief, you have responded generously to the request to provide “Health Kits.” These kits are designed and distributed by UMCOR (the United Methodist Committee on Relief). They consist of very basic items for personal hygiene, like soap and a tooth brush. The original goal was 50 and you have far surpassed that goal. The deadline is Oct 8.
I’m writing this because I think you should know how generously you and other members of your church have been. Last week, I spoke on living a Christian life. I used “rules” developed by John Wesley as a practical guide for putting faith into action. The second guideline, you may remember, is “Do Good”. In fact, do all the good you can, to all the people you can, at every time and in every place you can, as God gives you opportunity. You are already living out that guideline, and that is evident in your response to these tremendous needs. Are we perfect? Of course not. But we are increasingly able to follow Christ in daily life. That is a wonderful expression of grace. Thank you.
If you would like to contribute to hurricane relief in the US (including Puerto Rico) place your check in an envelope and write the designation “hurricanes” on the outside. To help internationally, write “international hurricane". If you would like to give toward earthquake relief in Mexico, write “Mexico”. Make checks payable to Grace UMC.
Jesus taught us, it is more blessed to give than to receive. You are faithfully living out his word. Thank you.
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