When emergencies strike, people need help right away. First with the basics―shelter, food, clothing―and then with rebuilding. Increasingly, people around the world are facing a variety of disasters. Climate change, health crises, food insecurity, and violent conflicts that forcibly displace thousands are just some of the catastrophes that affect millions of people every day.
The United Church is part of a worldwide network that makes a difference in the lives of those most at risk. United Church partners and ecumenical relationships in over 120 countries mean that we are on the ground ready to help in times of emergencies.
Recently, generous supporters have helped people struggling as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the devastating explosion in Beirut, and the earthquake in Haiti. From vaccines to hygiene kits to food to farm implements, your support is there when it is needed most. In return, our partners minister to us in a variety of ways, including spiritually.
The United Church of Christ in the Philippines, a Mission & Service partner, shares this prayer with us. Let us pray, together:
Most gracious and merciful God,
amidst the din of howling winds
above the noise of rampaging waves
atop the earthquakes and the shaking of the earth
we hear your voice: “Be still and know that I am God.”
Yes, even in times when we are prone not to be still,
at moments when we are sorely tempted to resort to flight,
we hear you and we pause to listen and to reflect, to stand still
and recognize that indeed you are the God who is with us,
that it is not in the wind or waves or in the earth’s tremors that you speak,
and that even when we walk through the shadow of the valley of death, that we are not alone
that even when we are put in the crucible of a fiery furnace,
that you are there to save.
In times like these, you speak to reassure us
through that still, small voice
through the concrete acts of solidarity of partners and friends
through those who lovingly stretched out their helping hands
to those ravaged by the storm
to those who are desolate and in despair
to those who are left with a threadbare of hope.
In times like these you assure us that we are not alone;
that we have sisters and brothers who are moved to walk the lonesome valley with us.
We thank you, for in times like these, your love and care are made more manifest and incarnate,
made alive in concrete deeds of lovingkindness and compassion.
To you we return all glory and praise.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Thank you for giving generously through Mission & Service.