Congregations take note: Tips for in-person and virtual worship and music, technology and "social distancing" options, copyright issues for virtual worship and much more are covered in "Faithful Response, with Worship, to the Coronavirus." Newly created by the United Church of Christ's Justice and Local Church Ministries, it is a truly valuable resource in the pandemic.
United Church of Christ leaders are sharing information with each other, listening to the latest data from world health organizations and taking directives from their local health departments to discern how best to take precautions as the coronavirus COVID-19 spreads across United States. They are practicing social distancing, increasing sanitation practices, and inviting worshippers to participate in services online, among other measures.
UCC Disaster Ministries is in contact with the UCC’s Southeast Conference since Tuesday (March 3), when tornadoes swept through central Tennessee, taking more than two dozen lives, displacing many others and causing extensive damage.
A word from Traci Blackmon about coronavirus
Just published! "UCC Disaster Ministries: Helping Rebuild Homes and Lives in 2019." See how generous contributions from across the United Church of Christ totaling more than $1 million have provided relief and long-term recovery to disaster survivors across the U.S. and around the world.
Earthquake aftershocks in Puerto Rico's south and southwest have not impeded Hurricane Maria long-term recovery work in Puerto Rico's north and northeast of UCC Disaster Ministries in partnership with the Iglesia Evangelica Unida de Puerto Rico (IEUPR).
In Puerto Rico's south and southwest, powerful earthquakes and thousands of aftershocks since late December took out power and water and have caused homes and other buildings to crack and crumble. UCC Disaster Ministries has sent an initial $20,000 and is seeking a total of $250,000 to assist earthquake response. Meanwhile, the ministry's work continues in Puerto Rico's north and northeast to restore Hurricane Maria-damaged roofs.
UCC Disaster Ministries recently granted $5,000 for fire survivors in Australia, $10,000 for typhoon and earthquake survivors in the Philippines and $12,500 for winterization items for Syrians struggling to survive prolonged war, massive displacement and dire economic conditions.
Again in 2020, UCC congregations assembling Church World Service Emergency Cleanup Buckets and other CWS Kits may apply for UCC Matching Grants of up to $250 from UCC Disaster Ministries. Deadline: January 31, 2021. Members of the denomination can assist hurricane and other disaster relief efforts by pre-assembling these supplies that are warehoused by CWS, ready to be shipped at a moment's notice when the need arises.
UCC Disaster Ministries is contributing a $5,000 solidarity grant toward a growing ecumenical response to the coronavirus emergency in China. Funds will enable purchase and air shipment of medical standard masks and robes to the Amity Foundation, an independent Chinese social organization founded in 1985 on the initiative of Chinese Christians.