Dear brothers and sisters in Christ at SUMC,
In late September, 2017 Hurricane Maria hit the island of Puerto Rico hard, with strong winds of over 170 mph. Considered one of the worst natural disasters in the history of Puerto Rico, Hurricane Maria is estimated to have caused the deaths of 2,975 people and upwards of $ 91 billion in damage.
The United Methodist Church as a denomination has responded by mobilizing the UMCOR (The United Methodist Committee on Relief) to help people in Puerto Rico rebuild their lives. UMCOR has given $20 million to help rebuild homes in Puerto Rico.
Our church’s VIM (Volunteer In Mission) team leaders, led the mission team of 13 people from Wisconsin Conference (8 from our church and 2 from the Madison area) to Arecibo, Puerto Rico for a mission trip. From Jan. 8 through Jan. 15 our mission team worked on two homes that needed electrical work, windows, and interior and exterior painting to make the homes habitable while the owners were living in rented housing.
A saying on the back of a shirt worn by a team member says it all, “Putting Beliefs Into Action. That’s Church.”
On Sunday morning, our group attended a Sunday morning service at a local Methodist church. A church member slipped a note with a message, “Thank you for coming all the way from Wisconsin to help people you did not even know! God bless you!”
On our last evening we saw a lonely homeless dog living in the junk pile near our campsite. Our hearts were strangely warmed when we saw the poor homeless dog, abandoned on a junk pile. One of the couples on our team decided to bring the poor dog to Suamico to give him a new home. They volunteered to stay in Puerto Rico for 5 more days to process the legal steps of bringing the homeless dog to Wisconsin.
A GoFundMe account was set up to help offset the cost of bringing the dog to Suamico and helping a Humane Society in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. If you are interested in helping, please call the church.
I thank God and our VIM team members for our safe and meaningful Mission Trip to Puerto Rico. May God continue to bless our brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico!
“All things work together for good for those who love God.” - Romans 8:28
Many blessings to you all! ~ Pastor Jerry