October 3, 2005
Five weeks after Hurricane Katrina and one week following the landfall of Hurricane Rita, UCC congregations in the New Orleans area gathered for worship on World Communion Sunday, October 2.
Seventy persons from Little Farms UCC, St. Matthew UCC and Salem UCC of New Orleans worshipped in the sanctuary of Little Farms. Members of Good Shepherd, Metairie, gathered in a local school building while members of First Trinity Evangelical, Metairie joined together with partner congregation, Faith Cumberland. All reflected how comforting it was to come together as the community of faith, embrace one another and share their sorrows and hopes for the future.
Clergy and lay leaders from the New Orleans Association and national disaster response staff have been meeting via conference call to make plans for supporting one another and rebuilding the United Church of Christ presence in New Orleans. Plans are underway for Good Shepherd to serve as the first UCC mission trip base camp in the New Orleans area. The fellowship hall and sanctuary have been gutted, mold removal has begun, and a UCC mission team from Indiana will be installing showers in mid-October. UCC Volunteer Ministries is arranging a long-term placement of a volunteer to serve as the Mission Trip Coordinator. It is hoped mission teams may be welcomed to Good Shepherd in November. Groups interested in mission trip opportunities in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita should contact Mary Schaller Blaufuss, Executive for Volunteer Ministries at: firstname.lastname@example.org
How you can help
1. Pray for the people who have been affected by Hurricanes Rita and Katrina and all disasters.
2. To help those affected by Hurricanes Rita and Katrina you may send gifts payable to your congregation marked for "Hope Shall Bloom-UCC Hurricane Recovery Fund" with the request they be sent through your Conference office on to Wider Church Ministries.
3. Send gifts payable to Wider Church Ministries and marked in the memo portion "Hope Shall Bloom-UCC Hurricane Recovery" Fund to Wider Church Ministries; 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115.
4. Make a secure on-line donation now by clicking on the donation button on this page.
5. Participate in the Covenant of Compassion www.ucc.org/disaster/covenant