Tag Archives: UMCOR

staff meetings are universal

Some things are too universal to need explanation. Staff meetings fall in that category.

This morning our team was privileged to set in on the weekly United Methodist Staff meeting. And although there were many of the same reports and updates there were also a fair amount of differences. After the meeting was opened with devotions the first order of business was a security report. That is different.

Every department reported successes and challenges, as would be expected, but at the end of the meeting the staff took up their weekly collection for their Agape Alms Fund. Every week the staff donates to the fund in order to provide aid to those in the community they select in need of help. That is also different.

After a delicious lunch (cabbage, kale, pumpkin, fried okra, rice and beans) several of us walked to the UMCOR (United Committee on Relief) compound where we spend several hours with Dr. Lynn and Dr Sharon Fogleman, a medical missionary couple who have been here in South Sudan for over 3 years. This is where I began gathering the information necessary for the potential food security project that brought me here to South Sudan.

South Sudan has the highest maternal mortality rate of any nation in the world. There are several factors that contribute to this statistic but malnutrition plays a large role. And malnutrition here in this area is rising.

Even though this is safest area in entire country the impact of the war is felt here. Food prices have almost tripled since March. And the outlook for the immediate future in not good.

Stop Hunger Now allowed me to come because we want to make a difference in South Sudan. We want to do the right thing in the right way. Hopefully, by the time I return to the States we will have a better idea how to make that happen in a significant and sustainable manner.

Stay tuned. There’s more to come

Sierra Leone pastors battling hunger as well as Ebola

Sierra Leone  is at the epicenter of the Ebola epidemic epidemic ravaging West Africa.  The epidemic has already killed almost four thousand and has brought the country to a standstill.

Last week I received a call from the Reverend John Yambasu, Bishop of the United Methodist Church in Sierra Leone. John and I have known each other for over twenty years, and when he calls I listen, not because he is a bishop, but because we are close friends and I know he is a man of great faithfulness.

John called with a plea for help. He needs food for the 200 United Methodist pastors and their families in Sierra Leone Conference. Could Stop Hunger Now help?

The need is both real and immediate. Ebola has caused the collapse of  Sierra Leone’s economy. People cannot work. Huge swaths of the country are under quarantine. That means far fewer people are attending worship services, and those that can attend have no money. Pastors are already starting to do without. They have no resources with which to purchase food.

Stop Hunger Now has already been responding the the Ebola epidemic. We have shipped over two million meals to various partners in Sierra Leone, Liberia and other West African countries. None of it, however, was specifically targeted to reach the United Methodist Church.

Now, UMCOR  (United Committee on Relief) has established two separate accounts for providing the critical aid need on both Sierra Leone and Liberia. Every dollar contributed goes directly to meet the need of those in the impacted areas. Please prayerfully consider helping and helping as generously as you are able. The fund for pastors salaries will enable them to purchase food for their families during this ongoing tragedy.

Here is the link on the UMCOR website:
http://www.umcor.org/umcor/donate/ebolaresponse  There is an Advance # for Sierra Leone and one for Liberia as well., two separate funds.
The link below is the donation page for pastors’ salaries in Sierra Leone
Gandhi wrote that “Action expresses priorities.”  My prayer is that our priorities would clearly demonstrate our love and care for our brothers and sisters in Sierra Leone and Liberia. Please help. Take action now.