Tuesday, September 3rd I had the privilege of visiting with Representative Kay Granger, Congresswoman for the 12th District in which I reside. On behalf of the other bishops of Texas (Bledsoe, Dorff, Huie and McKee) along with Bishop Tom Bickerton (who heads the Imagine No Malaria campaign for the Council of Bishops), Rev. Clayton Childers (Director of Advocacy for Imagine No Malaria from the General Board of Church and Society) and I presented Congresswoman Kay Granger a letter of gratitude and appreciate. [caption id="attachment_1392" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Photo of Bishop Lowry, Rep. Granger and Rev. Childers taken by Mattie Parker[/caption] Congresswoman Granger has been an instrumental force in funding the Global Fund, which participates in the Imagine No Malaria Campaign. The United Methodist Church through Imagine No Malaria is both a financial supporter of Global Fund and a recipient from the Global Fund. We team with the Global Fund, the Gates Foundation, the NBA, and others in combating killer diseases across our globe. Our letter in major part read:
On behalf of the United Methodist Church (UMC), our Imagine No Malaria campaign, and our members all across the country, we want to thank you for your leadership and work on H.R. 2855, the Fiscal Year 2014 State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations Bill, and for your robust and faithful support of the U.S. contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, especially during these times of fiscal austerity. As you know, a child dies of malaria every 60 seconds, a still alarming statistic but vast improvement over just a few years ago when we lost a child every 30 seconds to this preventable and treatable disease. Much of this improvement can and should be credited to the Global Fund, a critical tool in the fight against malaria. Global Fund-supported programs save lives. In fact more than 100,000 lives are saved each month in 150 countries around the world because of the work of the Global Fund. In terms of the malaria specific work being supported by the Global Fund, we would like to offer a few key highlights: by 2012 Global Fund-supported malaria programs had distributed over 270 million insecticide-treated nets, provided indoor residual spraying in dwellings 44 million times, and leveraged donor funding to finance the treatment of 260 million cases of malaria. The success of the Global Fund is a success of the United States. We are grateful for your bipartisan leadership. Your hard work and efforts as Chairwoman make it clear that the United States and the U.S. House of Representatives will continue to ensure that funding for malaria eradication efforts remain a key priority even during difficult times. … Your leadership in Congress remains critical to the success of global health programs worldwide and on behalf of your fellow United Methodists, we would like to extend our sincerest gratitude and appreciation for all you do.Representative Granger shared with us how extensive this work is. The Congresswoman talked about her work with Bono and others emphasizing the bipartisan nature of this United States government aid. She noted the progress we have made against polio. Recalling how her mother was stricken by polio and she along with her sister babysat a neighboring child when others were afraid to do so. Her words echo the compassion of her heart for this effort. We had a great visit and amid all the congressional wrangling we hear about, I want the people called Methodists to hear about one of our own engaged in a godly work. God bless you and thank you for your leadership, Representative Granger! Watch this video, The Global Fund, Be the Generation to Defeat AIDS, TB and Malaria ft Charlize Theron and Bono.