A note from Pastor Tracey:
I’m so grateful for your continued prayers and encouraged by your deep interest in responding to the needs of those affected by Harvey! As our Annual Conference, District, and local church have continued to plan, I have new information for you on how you can make a difference in response to this natural disaster.
Our Rio Texas Conference Bishop, Robert Schnase, and our District Superintendent, Teresa Wellborn, request that we direct our financial giving to the Rio Texas Conference Disaster Response Fund. Like funds given to the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), all donations will go directly to relief and recovery efforts as opposed to administrative or overhead expenses. Additionally, by giving to the Rio Texas Fund, all giving will directly benefit affected communities in the Rio Texas Annual Conference. With your donations, we will partner with UMCOR to sustain this relief effort for the many months ahead. They will allow us to offer immediate relief and to partner with Volunteers in Mission (VIM) and UMCOR for a long-term response.
Here is detailed information on how you can help. And please invite friends, family and neighbors who are looking for ways to help to join us in our efforts!
THROUGH YOUR CHURCH - Rio Texas Conference Disaster Response Fund. Check memo: CONFERENCE ADVANCE #2057
ONLINE - Give by credit or debit card at riotexas.org/give (you will have the option to credit Westlake UMC for your gift)
BY MAIL - Mail checks to Rio Texas Annual Conference, 16400 Huebner Road, San Antonio, Texas 78248.
Please note Advance #2057 in the memo line
SERVE ON AN EARLY RESPONSE TEAM - Whether you are ERT trained or not, if you are interested in learning how to volunteer to help with early cleanup efforts, please contact David Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org. And click here to register for training. https://riotexas.org/early-response-team-training
FLOOD BUCKETS - FUND a Flood Bucket by making a $65 donation (check to WUMC with “bucket” in the memo line). This will allow us to buy in bulk the other recommended crisis support and clean up supplies. You and your child are invited to PACK a Flood Bucket between worship services and during our Tailgate Potluck on Sunday, September 24.
Continue to hold all who have been (and continue to be) affected by the devastation left in Harvey’s wake. Pray for those who have lost their homes, cars, jobs, churches, and loved ones. Pray for those who, because they were vulnerable before the storm, have been left even more vulnerable as a result of the storm; the elderly, those in hospitals or in need of ongoing medical care like cancer treatments and dialysis, and those from immigrant populations who are afraid to seek the help they need. And pray for all who have worked tirelessly on rescue efforts and early recovery efforts. Finally, pray for us…those who are called by God to respond to the cries of those who hurt. Pray that we would hear and respond as God’s agents of grace to the communities in our midst most impacted.
PRAYER WALL - As you pray, and especially as you help your children process this widespread disaster, we invite you to share words, photographs, cards, artwork, or any expression of concern for those affected by Hurricane Harvey on the PRAYER WALL that has been constructed in the WUMC gym. These tangible expressions of care will allow us as a community to lift each other as well as these concerns to God.
Find support you may need from “Tips to Help Children Cope With Disasters “ at www.naeyc.org (National Association for the Education of Young Children) and also here: blog.umcdiscipleship.org/after-traumatic-events-listen/#