“I am so proud of our conference and our team in West. They are amazing! … Our reports are not done and will not be for another couple of months. We still have about four file drawers that our data person is working on –she is entering data as cases are closed out. We still have five homes we are working on. Our goal is to be complete by the April 17th anniversary this year. … if you add up all the figures to date … handled by UMCOR and the Central Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church [the total] is $5,367,292.77! We should easily go by the $6 million mark. Part of the reason cases are not closed yet is we are also surveying all of our clients and we will not close files until the work is complete.
Unfortunately, these numbers do not include other agencies and what they invested into the community like Red Cross, Salvation Army and area churches. We have no way to capture that. It also does not include the more than $600,000 we have invested into 8 case managers, a part-time construction manager and data specialist along with all of our administrative work and so many other people who have impacted this event.
All of this involves touching the lives of 630 cases (individuals and families!), which is the most important part. Our conference also responded with many Early Response Teams to help people recover their belongings in the first month and to make the few homes that were able to safe and secure. We also responded with volunteers for rebuilds and repairs.”To which I respond – WOW! I give thanks to God for your faithfulness through the United Methodist Church. Together we are living Matthew 25, “I assure you that when you have done it for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you have done it for me” (Matthew 25:40). On a related subject, the Central Texas Conference received an emergency $10,000 grant in January to help with relief for victims of tornado damage in the Ellis County/Glenn Heights area (around Ovilla, Texas). A mid-January report notes the following churches involved: Ovilla UMC Midlothian UMC FUMC Mansfield Morgan Mill UMC FUMC Hillsboro Wesley Chapel/Gholson White’s Chapel St. John the Apostle Community of Hope FUMC Burleson FUMC Weatherford FUMC Hurst I am quite conscious that this list is incomplete. Since then a significant number of other churches have responded. One of the signs of a healthy disciple-making church is an outward focus serving their community and transforming our world. We are seeing outwardly focused churches share the love Christ and neighbor in abundance. I thank God for your life giving ministry!