From the Director of Connectional Ministries:
Bishop Mike Watson joins with me in asking for a special offering to be taken this Sunday (or at a time appropriate for your church), to prepare for the work of disaster response after the storms that caused much damage on Wednesday night.
Bishop Watson asks that your prayers and your gifts be directed to the victims of these storms, and is very thankful that our congregations have a strong and long history of generous response to these kinds of situations. Your offerings can be dropped in your church offering plate or mailed to the North Georgia Conference Treasurer's Office marked #3740 North Georgia Conference Disaster Relief.
Our Conference Disaster Response Teams are working very hard to assess all the information of damage throughout our Conference area. Data is being gathered and clarified, especially as to when areas are cleared of various immediate dangers. (For example, it’s being reported that Ringgold has just had all non-emergency personnel removed from the city.) Until then we will keep you posted regarding requests of what teams and supplies will be needed.
We have various groups working in various capacities as I write. Some are working very hard to handle the delicate work of addressing loss of lives as a result of the storms. That is delicate work and prayerful in every regard. While buildings are not nearly as dear, it’s easier to work publically and openly about buildings and mark time while assessments are being made. Please know that both aspects are being addressed very seriously, but in different ways. Highlighting one over the other is not a measure of importance but of discretion.
We would like to remind everyone that while the urge to bring immediate help burns deep within us, we need our police, firefighters, search and rescue teams to have unfettered access to these areas first. Please do not travel into heavily affected areas without an invitation. It’s also important to make sure some sites don’t get more than they need while others go wanting.
It is vital we all work together to assure we are getting the whole job done as quickly as we can. We will be mobilizing volunteers as soon as possible, but we need to let first things get done first. Until then, please keep all the people affected by these storms across the southeast USA in your daily prayers.
Stay up to date on reports of storm damage at http://www.ngumc.org/news/detail/944