Dear First Family,
Psalm 121, verse 1 – 2 reads—
I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
Verse one contains a question that so many in the path of Hurricane Harvey have been asking since the end of last week. For those who have only seen images of those areas most affected, it is the question we are asking as well.
Stephanie and I have been praying for help for all of our neighbors to the southeast while simultaneously communicating with her parents who live in southwest Houston. Their neighborhood was given a mandatory evacuation notice earlier this week. We are thankful for close friends in the area who are now hosting them and that they are out of harm’s way. I know hundreds of you are also praying for family members and friends, as well as the first responders working countless hours to meet the overwhelming needs from the flooding.
Still, we ask— Where does help come from?
- Help comes when we fervently and faithfully pray together for those affected.
- Help comes when individuals and families put together cleaning kits and health kits. You can find instructions to do that here.
- Help comes when we give financially to support recovery. There are several ways you can give. You can donate any amount here. In addition, you may send a check directly to our church made out to First Methodist Mansfield with DISASTER RELIEF in the memo line and mail to 777 N. Walnut Creek, Mansfield, TX 76063 or come by our Main Office, Monday-Thursday from 9 am-5 pm. Please direct any questions to the church office at 817-477-2287.
- Help comes in the donation of gift cards for evacuees and first responders. Any amount is appreciated. $25 or $50 cards to stores like Walmart or Target have proven to be the best resources. You may also bring those to the church office anytime this week or drop it by a Connecting Point this weekend.
- Help comes in the form of specially trained Early Response Teams who will be heading to affected areas. A team from our church will be leaving tomorrow. If you would like to be trained to do this work in the future, you can find more information here or contact Susan Luttrell with any questions.
And perhaps most importantly, help will come over the long term as we commit to the recovery process that will continue long after the devastating news images that have dominated TV, social media, etc. begin to fade.
Because of what I know about you, I can say with confidence that we are committed to the recovery of our neighbors over the long haul. In the immediate aftermath, these are just a few of the first steps we are taking but there will be much more in weeks, months and even years ahead.
And so in advance of the great work that is before us, hear my deep appreciation for being a church that not only prays for help to come but is also willing to be the help that is the answer to those prayers.
Grace & Peace,
Carol Ritchey says
Will donations marked Disaster Relief be sent to UMCOR or used locally. Trying to figure out where it would be best to send funds.