Everyone: I hope this finds you well and blessed.
First and foremost, thank you to everyone who has supported tornado recovery efforts in Evergreen, the small community in Appomattox County devastated by the line of violent storms in February 2016. And, of course, thank you also to those who supported our efforts in Tappahannock and Waverly, where the Conference ceased operations in the spring.
To the work teams, to the generous donors, to prayer warriors, God has surely been at work through you.
I’m writing one last time to ask for your support.
The Conference set Oct. 31 as the deadline for Evergreen recovery to be complete. Our Evergreen Coordinator, Stephanie Hunt, has worked tirelessly to meet the deadline — seven days a week, from sunrise to sunset many days.
While the three remaining new construction projects are moving rapidly toward completion, it’s going to take a few additional weeks to wrap up.
We are seeking work teams to serve in Evergreen out through Nov. 18, the Saturday before Thanksgiving.
If you or your team can give us a day or two or even a week, please let me know as soon as possible.
The open weeks are:
Oct. 29-Nov. 3
We also need your help with financial donations.
Over the summer, we saw hurricanes devastate Texas, Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. Our churches have given to help survivors in those areas, through donations of money and flood buckets.
However, giving to help survivors outside the Conference has greatly impacted funding for our tornado recovery efforts.
Only 5 percent of Conference churches have given to Virginia Conference Disaster Recovery in 2017, based on most recent data (through Aug. 31), compared to 32 percent in 2016.
We have received $163,000 less in church donations in 2017 than in 2016.
Please consider making a donation to help finish the houses in Evergreen and to outfit them with basic furnishings so survivors can finally begin the process of making the houses their home.
Checks should be made to the Virginia Conference with advance #5037 and Tornado Recovery Evergreen in the memo line.
Mail donations to:
Virginia Conference UMC
P.O. Box 5606
Glen Allen, VA 23058-5606
Before closing, I invite you to pause and consider what has been accomplished under Stephanie’s leadership in Evergreen. Work began there on Aug. 29, 2016. In less than 15 months, we will have completed seven new houses in that community and repaired more than a dozen homes. That’s unheard of in the church disaster recovery world, where progress is dictated by the skill level of individual volunteers and the flow of work teams.
Thank you Stephanie! What a blessing you have been to the entire Conference and to the community you have served so faithfully.
Finally, my role as Disaster Recovery Manager for the Conference ends effective Oct. 31.
I wish the storms had never hit these communities.
But since they did and since the Conference chose to engage in recovery, I was blessed to be a part of this ministry.
Thank you to the many churches around the Conference that invited me to come tell the story of disaster recovery and speak of serving God’s children in need, most often during your worship services. I have driven more than 32,000 miles for work over 18 months, from the coast to the western edge of the Conference (so far I had to spend the night before in West Virginia!!!) and all stops in between, quite frankly on some days to places I’d never heard of before my job began.
Thank you to the hundreds and hundreds of people I’ve met along this journey.
Thank you to the countless leaders who’ve reached out to schedule teams over these last 18 months and to all who helped in any way.
I won’t forget you; I won’t forget your stories.
What a privilege it has been to serve.
I end this e-mail the same way I’ve ended most of them …
We’re in this together and, best of all, God is with us!
Long-term Recovery Manager and UMVIM Coordinator
The Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church
Virginia UMVIM Facebook page
As of May 1, 2015 we no longer prepare a written newsletter. We send out electronic E-letters via email. If you would like to be added to our email list, please send your address to FarmvilleDistrict@vaumc.org with the words Newsletter in the subject line. We will be glad to add you to our list.
Staying In Touch -
To read an archived newsletter – click on the one you are interested in.
Annual Conference Edition – June 2014
Staying In Touch – June & July 2014