A Moment for Mission
"You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with glad cries of deliverance." —Psalm 32:7, NRSV
Imagine seeing your home swept away by floodwaters or a hurricane or escaping wildfires and wondering when—or if —you could return home. This was a reality for many people in 2017 as a record hurricane season devastated communities in Florida, Louisiana, Texas and Puerto Rico and wildfires tore through California neighborhoods.
On the other side of the world, a different kind of disaster arose for those who once called Mosul, Iraq, home. Families faced life-or-death choices as they returned to find land mines and explosives in their homes.
When a disaster overwhelms a community, the United Methodist Committee on Relief is one of the first agencies in and the last out. As the humanitarian and relief arm of The United Methodist Church, UMCOR puts the beliefs of the church into action and makes a real difference in the world.
In 2017, UMCOR touched 425,046 lives in more than 30 countries through disaster response, humanitarian relief, sustainable development and migration programs. This would not be possible without the generosity of those who give on UMCOR Sunday (formerly One Great Hour of Sharing) and throughout the year. UMCOR also depends on strong partnerships with United Methodist annual conferences, central conferences and other Methodist bodies internationally, along with aid organizations, internal relief agencies, communities and local nongovernmental organizations worldwide.
Since 1940, UMCOR has rebuilt lives, homes and hope. Thank you for being a part of this legacy.
—Adapted from Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton, president; Thomas Kemper, executive director; and Roland Fernandes, executive director, in UMCOR annual report
Loving God, when your children suffer, you surround and deliver them. Bless our gifts, so that we, too, can share your love with people everywhere. In your name, we pray. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: Fourth Sunday in Lent — Creator and Redeemer, through Christ you have reconciled us to you. You are willing to look beyond our disobedience and disloyalty and have opened your arms wide in welcome, when, in our repentance, we return to you. May the giving we do this morning be a pledge of our desire to make your redeeming, reconciling love known to others who believe they are not worthy or beyond your reach. May our offering be used to empower that good news. We pray in the name of Christ, our rock and our salvation. Amen.(2 Corinthians 5:16-21)
Today is UMCOR Sunday, formerly known as One Great Hour of Sharing. It's an opportunity for United Methodists to share the goodness of life with those who hurt. The United Methodist Committee on Relief provides disaster relief and supplies, disaster risk reduction, sustainability and humanitarian development.
Next year, UMCOR will celebrate its 80th birthday. Here are ideas for raising funds for this special day:
Sponsor a run, walk or bike ride with people pledging 80 cents per mile or lap. Put your earnings in the UMCOR Sunday offering.
Give up something that costs about $8—a gourmet cappuccino, a favorite dessert or a movie matinee. Donate the money you save.
Since UMCOR Sunday is the fourth Sunday in Lent, donate 80 cents a day for each of the 40 days of this holy season. In a 100-member church, this adds up to $3,200!
Think of a creative way you can share on UMCOR Sunday, then give generously to help others. Thank you!