United Methodists are among those starting to provide emergency supplies while assessing damages from the powerful Nov. 8 storm, known as Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines. As Bridges mission partners with United Methodists of the Philippines, North Georgia is already reaching out to our connections in the country as well.
Northwest District Superintendent Herzen Andone has been in touch with Bishop Juan of the Philippines to express both our sorrow at the loss of life and our willingness to help. Juan is one of several active and retired bishops from the Philippines attending the council of bishops meeting in Lake Junaluska this week. All were travelling before the super storm struck their country.
A Bridges Mision Trip was already scheduled to the Philippines from Jan 26 to Feb 4. The trip is still open to volunteers.
"We did have an agenda planned out for that trip, but it may change depending on the needs of our partners in the wake of the storm," said Andone. "I let Bishop Juan know that we are available to help in whatever capacity we're needed at that time."
Having already taken two Bridges trips to the Philippines and welcomed a Filipino delegation to North Georgia during Annual Conference in June, our conference has established a strong tie to the people of the Philippines.
The Bridges motto is as important as ever when it comes to this disaster: Give, Pray, Go. Individuals and churches are encouraged to participate in and share these three opportunities:
To be a part of the Philippines Bridge Work Team Jan. 26-Feb. 4, contact coordinators Herzen Andone at firstname.lastname@example.org or Kenny Ott at email@example.com.
Please engage your congregations in prayer. There is great strength in the connection of The United Methodist Church. You're invited to share your prayer for the people of the Philippines in the comment section below.
Give through any North Georgia Conference United Methodist Church. Place checks made out to your local church in the offering plate and note: The Philippins Disaster Response in the memo line. Your church will then mail one check to the North Georgia Conference. Fund number 8430 has been set for those wishing to give to disaster response efforts to the Philippines.
As you can imagine Disaster Relief Supplies become critical during times like this as the inventory held in the UMCOR Depots are shipped to meet the immediate needs of the survivors in the affected areas. UMCOR relief kits and cleaning buckets are needed. Your church can collect and assemble relief kits, which are distributed through the UMCOR Depot, Sager Brown in Louisiana. Instructions for the various kits can be found at www.umcor.org.