Episcopal Relief and Development Update

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A Shield….
in the =
midst of life’s storms =C2=A0
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=C2=A0Click here to =
see a web copy of this email

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August 16, 2015=C2=A0

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Dea=
r Friends,

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As this 75th anniversary year for Episcopal Relief & Develop=
ment continues, I’d like to remind and encourage you all to remember the go=
od work done by our Church through the efforts of Episcopal Relief & Develo=
pment. From the wildfires raging in California to natural disasters around =
the world to the hardships caused by famine and lack of clean water, Episco=
pal Relief & Development is working with our sisters and brothers in church=
es in those areas to identify unmet needs and the best ways to meet them. P=
lease consider donating to Episcopal Relief & Development as they work to b=
ring healing to these hurting parts of our country and the world.

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You can click HERE to make a dona=
tion to US Disaster Relief or to any of their efforts around the globe, and=
to learn more about the many ways Episcopal Relief & Development reaches o=
ut in its 75th anniversary year to let those suffering know that our Episco=
pal Church is there for them.

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It has been my ple=
asure and privilege to serve as interim representative of this diocese to E=
piscopal Relief & Development for the past three-plus years. I have learned=
much from working so closely with the dedicated and talented people at Epi=
scopal Relief & Development, knowledge that has been put to use here in our=
diocese through the ongoing efforts of episcopalRELIEFnepa.

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It is time for oth=
ers to have the opportunity to learn from this great helping arm of our Chu=
rch and to bring that knowledge back to our diocese to help in new and inno=
vative ways, as we are striving to do with episcopalRELIEFnepa. I have ther=
efore tendered my resignation as interim representative to Bishop Sean, who=
has accepted. In due time Bishop Sean will name a new representative to Ep=
iscopal Relief & Development, and I hope that person will find the opportun=
ity as fulfilling and life-changing as I have.

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Please continue to=
keep episcopalRELIEFnepa in your prayers as we strive to be a Shield in th=
e Midst of Life’s Storms for our region.
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Fai=
thfully,=C2=A0

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Rev. John C. Major
Director, episcopalRELIEFnepa
Rector, Trinity Ch=
urch West Pittston
Priest-in-Charge, St. Clement & St. Peter’s, Wilkes-B=
arre

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Please visit www.ep=
iscopalRELIEFnepa.org for helpful resources for disaster preparedness a=
nd recovery

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The May 20=
13 issue of Vestry Papers
included a=
number of articles about Episcopal responses to disasters in their communi=
ties. These articles can help generate thoughtful conversation and plans fo=
r how your faith community will respond in times of disaster (click here for link to Vestry Papers).

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=
Where We Stand.=

in meeting the requirements of Diocesan Convention Resolution r=
equiring all parishes to have a disaster plan on file by the end of 2013:

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Parishes with filed plans in 201=
3:
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Parishes with filed plans in 2014: 1
Parishes trained with plans underway: 21

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Resources

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Episcopa=
l Relief & Development

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Episcopal Relief NEPA

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Parish Disaster Preparedness

Personal/Family Preparedness

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(including Go-Kit r=
ecommendations)

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High Heat

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Thunderstorms

Hurricanes
Tornadoes

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Flooding

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Flash Flooding

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FEM=
A Preparedness Info

Red Cross Preparedne=
ss Info

ASPCA Preparedness Info for Pets

How to Help After a Disaster=

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Click logo to donate to Diocese o=
f Bethlehem Disaster Relief

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Contact Us=0A

The Rev. John C. Major
jmajordioebetherd@hotmail.com
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Prayer for Disaster Relief & Community =
Resiliency

God of love and hope, you have called=
us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms=C2=A0an=
d trials of this world. =C2=A0Grant us courage to persevere through the cha=
llenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffe=
ring and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good n=
ews that you are always near. =C2=A0Grant this through your
Son, Jesus =
Christ, who=C2=A0calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the =
midst of storms.

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=0A=09Sent to: 5yk4kvb2@episcopalreliefnepa.org

=0A=09Unsubscribe

=0A=09EpiscopalReliefNEPA, 408 E. Main Street,=
Nanticoke, PA 18634, USA=0A=09

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Episcopal Relief and Development Sunday

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Click h=
ere to see a web copy of this email

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A Shield….
in the =
midst of life’s storms =C2=A0
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February 11, 2015=C2=A0

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Dea=
r Friends,

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Since the General Con=
vention in 2009, the first Sunday in Lent has been designated as Episcopal =
Relief and Development Sunday.=C2=A0 The season of Lent was chosen because =
it is during this holy season that we often reflect on our Christian missio=
n and renew our commitment to service and meeting the needs of the less for=
tunate.

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In this 75th annivers=
ary year of the founding of Episcopal Relief & Development, you are invited=
to set aside Sunday February 22, any Sunday in Lent, or any other Sunday t=
o remind your congregation of the many ways this helping arm of our church =
reaches out to bring healing and hope to those suffering from hunger, disea=
se, war, poverty, disaster, and the many other storms of this life. This co=
uld provide an opportunity for church schools or other groups to undertake =
acts of service or sacrifice and send donations to benefit the work of our =
Church in the United States and around the world.

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Resources to assist w=
ith planning your Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday activities can be f=
ound here and include downloadable bulletin inserts to=
make it easy for your parish to share the word.

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Please join in the celebration of 75 years =
of ministry to those most in need in the United States and around the world=
by supporting and encouraging others to share in the good work of our Chur=
ch around the world by scheduling Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday on =
February 22 or another upcoming Sunday. Thank you for all you do to help ou=
r communities know that the Episcopal Church is their Shield in the Midst o=
f Life’s Storms.

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Fai=
thfully,=C2=A0

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Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief=C2=A0
&=C2=A0Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem =C2=A0=C2=A0
=C2=A0

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Please visit www.ep=
iscopalRELIEFnepa.org for helpful resources from your local Episcopal R=
elief & Development representatives.

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The May 20=
13 issue of Vestry Papers
included a=
number of articles about Episcopal responses to disasters in their communi=
ties. These articles can help generate thoughtful conversation and plans fo=
r how your faith community will respond in times of disaster (click here for link to Vestry Papers).

=C2=A0

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=C2=A0

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=
Where We Stand.=

in meeting the requirements of Diocesan Convention Resolution r=
equiring all parishes to have a disaster plan on file by the end of 2013:

=0A

Parishes with filed plans in 201=
3:
=C2=A04

Parishes with filed plans in 2014: 1
Parishes trained with plans underway: 21

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Resources

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Episcopa=
l Relief & Development

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Episcopal Relief NEPA

=C2=A0

=0A

Parish Disaster Preparedness

Personal/Family Preparedness

=0A

(including Go-Kit r=
ecommendations)

=0A

Winter Storms
=
High Heat

=0A

Thunderstorms

Hurricanes
Tornadoes

=0A

Flooding

=0A

Flash Flooding

=0A

FEM=
A Preparedness Info

Red Cross Preparedne=
ss Info

ASPCA Preparedness Info for Pets

How to Help After a Disaster=

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=C2=
=A0

=0A

Click logo to donate to Diocese o=
f Bethlehem Disaster Relief

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=0A
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Contact Us=0A

The Rev. John C. Major
Interim =
Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development
Diocese of Bethleh=
em

jmajordiobetherd=
@hotmail.com

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Prayer for Disaster Relief & Community =
Resiliency

God of love and hope, you have called=
us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms=C2=A0an=
d trials of this world. =C2=A0Grant us courage to persevere through the cha=
llenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffe=
ring and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good n=
ews that you are always near. =C2=A0Grant this through your
Son, Jesus =
Christ, who=C2=A0calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the =
midst of storms.

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=0A=09Sent to: 5yk4kvb2@episcopalreliefnepa.org

=0A=09Unsubscribe

=0A=09EpiscopalReliefNEPA, 408 E. Main Street,=
Nanticoke, PA 18634, USA=0A=09

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Shield in the Storm: Mission Trip Final Day

 

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

Praise and worship…

Monday….

Thursday!

July 31, 2014  

Dear Friends,

It is hard to say how full my heart is as I reflect back on this week and our final day with our friends from Florida.  So much has been accomplished that even with the evidence right in front of us, it’s hard to believe so much work has been done.

The entire former sanctuary, which four days ago had peeling and drooping wallpaper, now has a fresh and beautiful coat of paint.  To make this happen, our missioners–few of whom are under 50–climbed ladders and scaled scaffolding and stretched and bent to reach every nook and cranny.  From the ceiling line to the window trim to the radiator covers, very little of the building escaped the touch of a paint brush or roller.

The outside of the building also looks outstanding, with years worth of dirt blasted away with a power washer and mounds of weeds removed.  Even the threat of poison ivy didn’t stop this group from beautifying the regional center’s grounds!

Add to this the work already accomplished on the flood-damaged porch in West Pittston and the grounds of Trinity West Pittston, and we could have considered this a very good and blessed week.  But through the tireless work and dedication of an incredible group of missioners, the entire main floor of the building was cleaned, damaged floor tiles on three landings were scraped off so new donated flooring can be installed, signs for the main areas of the building were framed, the greeting counter was built from scratch then stained and treated with polyurethane, and the outside doors were primed and a first coat of paint was added.  Our incredible missioners easily exceeded the expectations we had for the tasks that could be completed in just four days.

Even that wasn’t enough.  The Florida group’s resident carpenter, Bob, spent his entire birthday Thursday designing and crafting an amazing frame and door to cover a very unsightly and hard to clean section of the kitchen where the fuse boxes are located.  It might have been Bob’s birthday, but we got the gift!

And at the end of the day and the week, in the midst of the freshly painted walls and cleaned windows and floors, the entire group paused and shared the first Holy Eucharist we have celebrated since the building became St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery and Outreach Center more than two years ago. Dusty and tired, flecked with several colors of paint, with sawdust in our hair and grass stains on our pants, we gathered to stand around an altar made by a volunteer from a pew from the former St. George’s Church and share the Lord’s supper.  It was truly a moving moment, and a fitting end to a most amazing week. 

Please take a look at the pictures below and see all that has been done to the glory of God to benefit our region through the hard work of so many from near and far.  We thank once again our missioners representing Shepherd of the Hills parish in Florida–Karen, Art, Bette, Lynn, Linda, Jane, Bob, Howard, Jack, and Zack–along with friends Jim Bright and Linda Briedinger.  Jim and Linda are also from Shepherd of the Hills in Florida but were visiting family in Pennsylvania.  They came by just to say “Happy Birthday” to Jane and Bob and stayed to paint and help with the yard work.  Erica Snarski from St. Clement and St. Peter’s in Wilkes-Barre returned to help with painting, and Rich Honeychurch, also from St. Clement  and St. Peter’s, stopped by with refreshments to continue the amazing hospitality he and wife Maureen showed the group on Wednesday.   We were also visited by Barbara Evanosky from Bear Creek and Dotty Tengowski from
Nanticoke, who joined us for Noon Prayer.

This week is over, and though we are tired, we are sad to see the week end and our new friends go.  But this is far from the end of the mission for any of us.   It touched my heart to hear several of the missioners from Florida ask if they can come back to work at St George’s Regional Center again–of course the answer is yes!  As so many have learned, there is something especially fulfilling and joyful about reaching beyond ourselves to serve others.  In God’s wonderful way, the more of ourselves that we give away, the more we find we receive in return. 

The work of this week and all who took part in it have moved the ministry so far forward, and yet there is much more to be done, with soup and bread meals to start very soon.  If you or a group from your church would like to join in this important regional ministry, please email jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com to receive updates and information on how to help. 

Please join us in praying for safe travels for this wonderful group who have done so much to help our diocese and region in ministry, and in giving thanks to God for their generosity in sharing of their time, talent and treasure.  May God abundantly bless them and all who have helped this new ministry being born in our region.

Thank you to all our missioners and new friends, and to all who help the world know that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the Midst of Life’s Storms…

Faithfully, 

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief 
Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem
Director, St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery &        Outreach Center

Bob’s Birthday Gift—to us!


In progress…

All done!

View from the prayer space at the end of the week…

Final touches on the paint…

Painting trim…

Floor tile comes up…

Window trim gets a second coat…

The group reflects at the end of the trip…

First Holy Eucharist…

After a job well done…

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

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Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: Mission Trip Day 4

 

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

Priming, Painting, Patience!

July 30, 2014  

Dear Friends,

On this third work day of the mission trip, our efforts returned to St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center in Nanticoke.  Right after Morning Prayer, out came the paint brushes and trays, drop cloths and ladders.  Some of the crew worked on finishing the priming that was begun on Monday; others put the first coat of paint on the parts that were already primed. 

The work took patience, and lots of it, but not because the work was trying: the paint color chosen for the upper floor of the regional center is called Patience.  We knew from the beginning that it was going to take buckets of patience on our part to turn the long-vacant church into the new ministry God has planned, and painting it with a color called Patience seemed the perfect way to remember that something new would be born in God’s time.  It seems that God has much grander plans for this building than the storage site for disaster supplies we originally envisioned.  Today, friends from far and near moved us so much closer to that “something new” by completing all the priming and painting of the two long walls in the upper hall as well as the lower entry way.  By tomorrow, the entire upper level of the center
will have a fresh coat of Patience.

The other kind of patience was required by the crew members who were outside pulling weeds and vines and clearing overgrowth from along the parking lot fences.  The tangled branches and vines that bordered the property weren’t originally on today’s agenda so we didn’t have all the right tools on hand for the project.  That didn’t stop the dedicated missioners, who repurposed an ice chopper and used a small pair of hand shears and a folding saw to tackle a small jungle.  And despite the difficulty of this work, there were many smiles all around as new friends and old went about their tasks.

There were also plenty of smiles when lunchtime came.  The entire work crew was invited to a cookout at the home of Rich and Maureen Honeychurch, who are parishioners at St. Clement & St. Peter’s Church in Wilkes-Barre and neighbors of St. George’s.  Their hospitality went beyond incredible as our missioners were treated to hotdogs and hamburgers, beans and pasta salad, chips, beverages and four different desserts!  Rich and Maureen even showed up near the end of the day with fruit and cake and some beverages to hold the troops over until dinner.

All of that would have been more than enough for one day, but today also saw the window trim in the lower level get painted, the window wells get cleared of debris and weeds, the kitchen get a thorough cleaning, the front of the building get a powerwashing, the greeting counter for the lower hall get its finishing trim and a first coat of poly on the top, the creation of framework for a cover for the exposed fuse boxes in the kitchen, and the sanding and painting of the metal back doors to the center.  In addition, the work was completed on the flood-damaged porch in West Pittston. 

This talented, dedicated, cheerful, and hardworking group of missioners continues to amaze, and we are so grateful for the presence of the team that is representing Shepherd of the Hills parish in Florida so well: Karen, Bette, Art, Bob, Jane, Lynn, Howard, Jack, Linda, and Zack.  Today, they were joined by two others from Florida, Stan and Leah Foshay, who spend their summers here in Pennsylvania.  Our regional team today included Deacon Bev Meneeley and Harry Novak from St. James Drifton, Erica Snarski and Rich and Maureen Honeychurch from St. Clement & St. Peter’s Church in Wilkes-Barre, Marti Shafer-Callahan, Jake Busch and Shane Sonday from Trinity West Pittston, and carpenter Russell Civiletti. Check out the pictures below to see them at work and play.

It is a pleasure to work with this tremendous group of sisters and brothers.  They truly are showing this area and beyond that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the midst of life’s storms.  We invite you to join us if you can on our final work day at St. George’s in Nanticoke tomorrow from 8 am to 4 pm.

And if you can’t join us but would like to help us continue the work that has taken such huge strides forward this week, please click here to visit our new Shield in the Storm Shop and order the “official” t-shirt of this ministry and/or a hat with our Episcopal Shield and the message “The Episcopal Church–A Shield in the midst of life’s storms.”  All proceeds from the sale of these items benefits the regional mission and ministry at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.

Thank you to all our missioners and new friends, and to all who help the world know that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the Midst of Life’s Storms…

Faithfully, 

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief 
Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem
Director, St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center

Back wall in the morning

Back wall all primed and ready for Patience

Front wall getting primed

Zack primes inside the arch

Front wall priming complete!

Cutting in with Patience…

A wall full of Patience…

Front bed weeding…

Weeds weeds weeds!

Fun and fellowship among the weeds…

Parking lot jungle

Into the brush…

Jungle be gone!

Backbreaking work for Deacon Bev

Soup stove gets a good cleaning!

Power washing


Rich makes lunch

Incredible hospitality!

 newsletter for 

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

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Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: Mission Trip Day 3

 

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

A Cascade of Blessings!

Tuesday’s Missioners Down by the River

July 29, 2014  

Dear Friends,

The dictionary lists one definition of “cascade” as “something that flows like a waterfall, especially in seeming to flow or fall in abundance,” and cascade is a perfect way to describe the blessings that were flowing on this third day our Florida missioners have been with us!

Today, the abundant blessings were falling on West Pittston, where the group worked on and blessed two different parts of the borough at once.  The blessings included six local missioners added to our “Florida and friends” troop of ten. One group worked to fix the porch of a home that had water up to the second floor in the 2011 flood, while the other tackled a long-neglected portion of Trinity’s grounds to make it more welcoming for an upcoming flood anniversary event and set the backdrop for a new memorial garden.

The porch crew made quick work of demolishing the disintergrating porch ceiling, the railing and steps, some of which still bore traces of flood mud nearly three years later.  The crew immediately moved onto the longer and more difficult task of making the porch safer and more sound.  By day’s end, a good portion of the work had been completed, including a new set of steps, but part of that crew will return to West Pittston tomorrow to finish the project. 

The entire group of missioners did make a trip to the porch work site on North Street to visit with the homeowner, who shared his story about the damage caused by the flood and his gratitude for the help he’s received in the last two and a half years from the Episcopal Church.  “The church has been such a blessing to me,” he told the group.

From the North Street porch project, it was only a short half-block walk to the river, and everyone except the two very dedicated members of the carpentry crew who didn’t want to stop their work took a walk and paused for a picture by the Susquehanna River–beautiful today, but the cause of so much suffering in the past.  Even here, there were blessings to be found as a man walking his dog offered to take a picture of our group so that all of us could be in it.

Once back on Trinity’s grounds, the larger part of the group tackled cutting up brush, clearing weeds and tilling up several portions of the side yard, spreading endless wheelbarrows full of dirt, planting seven arborvitaes and two smaller shrubs, planting grass, spreading mulch and then watering everything.  In one day, their hard work brought to fruition the first stage of a memorial garden I have been envisioning for more than five years.  They even enhanced that vision with a suggestion for an extention of the garden that will screen a shed and the trash area and further beautify the yard! 

But even the cascade of blessings from the garden wasn’t the end. 

First, we are so happy and blessed to have three young men who have given up part of their summer vacation to be part of this group.  Zack Nadeau is the 16 year old grandson of one of the Florida missioners, and he has joined us for the week.  And Jake Busch, 13, and Shane Sonday, 14, from Trinity West Pittston, have also committed to being with us for the full week.  Their presence and hard work has been a source of joy and inspiration to us all.

Second, we learned that three of our Florida missioners are celebrating their birthdays this week, and of all the places and ways they could have chosen to spend their special days, we are so honored and glad that they chose to spend them with us.  We took time at the end of the day to share a birthday cake and offer a blessing for the “birthday kids,” Jane and Bob Powers and Lynn Meyer.  And the day that began with Morning prayer and paused for Noon prayer ended with rousing version of that Bible School favorite, “Father Abraham”, and a prayer for a restful night and even better day tomorrow.

We’ve had two incredible days of faith and work, fellowship and worship, and we are looking forward to more of the same tomorrow and Thursday at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center in Nanticoke. Today, we thank again Karen, Bette, Art, Bob, Jane, Lynn, Jack, Linda, Howard and Zack from the Shepherd of the Hills group; Jake Busch, Shane Sonday, Marti Shafer-Callahan and Laurie Brogan from Trinity West Pittston; Deacon Bev Meneeley; and our carpentry coordinator, Russell Civiletti from Harding.  Check out the photos below to see all the wonderful blessings we saw cascading on our West Pittston community today.  You are welcome to join us and we hope you wil come meet the amazing people working so hard to help our region and diocese in ministry to our communities.

Thank you to all our missioners and new friends, and to all who help the world know that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the Midst of Life’s Storms…

Faithfully, 

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief 
Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem
Director, St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center

The porch ceiling in need of repair

Teamwork!

Repairs begin

Young missioners Shane & Zack work on the porch

New steps!

The group working on the yard checks out the project

The yard work begins

Yard work well underway

Finishing touches on the arborvitae plantings

Mulch movers

The group planted, Jake waters,
and God will bring about the growth…

Jake and Shane take a break…

The birthday kids–Bob, Jane and Lynn–blow out their candles

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: Mission Trip Day 2

 

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

Better than fireworks
on the Fourth of July!

July 28, 2014  

Dear Friends,

Today was the first work day for our mission group from Florida and far and wide, and what a day it was!  Going into the day, we were hoping that we might get the wall paper down off the walls of the former nave at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center and get the walls sanded.  We got that, and so much more!

In just the first day, the incredible group representing Shepherd of the Hills Episcopal Church in Florida and several missioners from our own diocese not only removed every scrap of wallpaper, they sanded and prepped the walls and got most of the priming done.  But that wasn’t all–before the day was out, some areas in the downstairs community room were patched and sanded and repainted.  When they took a break from standing on ladders and scaffolding, some of the group took time to  painstakingly scrape and peel paint from the heating system grate to prepare them for repainting.  Two of the ladies were asked  to put a fresh coat of paint on a hallway and stairwell–they painted the ceiling as well!  When the old organ was in the way of the work, it was disconnected from the wiring and moved.   The pulpit
and lecturn were unbolted and removed to open up the prayer space, making it more accessible physically and visually.   And a new check-in counter on casters was created out of the old dividing walls for the choir area–the carpenter even used the old brackets that bolted the dividers to the floor to brace the corners!  The entire building was bustling with activity from 8:30 am until 4 pm, and filled with a cheerful buzz of people who are really enjoying what they were doing.

The group also found time to begin the day with Morning prayer end the day with a joyful sung “Alleluia!”, and, following our custom since this new ministry’s earliest days, paused in the middle of the day for Noon Prayer.  It was truly a day full of all the best of faith in action, and for those of us who have labored so long to move this ministry forward, it was like fireworks on the Fourth of July–exciting and awe-inspiring to watch, and makes you look heavenward with a smile on your face and joy and gratitude in your heart. This was even better, though, because as we watched this hard-working and dedicated crew at work, it filled us with great hope for the new thing being born in Nanticoke and our diocese.  Check out the photos below to get just a glimpse of today’s fun and hard work.

Thank you to our new and already very dear friends from Florida–Karen, Bette, Art, Bob, Jane, Lynn, Howard, Linda, Jack and Zack. We are also grateful for the presence and hard work of those who joined us from our diocese–Peter Eddins from Hamlin, Sue Ellen Andres and Ed Reis from Jim Thorpe, Fr. Peter Pearson from St. James and St. George in Jermyn, and Marti Callahan, Jake Busch, and Shane Sonday from Trinity West Pittston.  We were also visited by Ladd and Julie Harris, who have connections to both our area and the Florida missioners and stopped by to cheer on the crew.

Tomorrow the focus of the ministry will move to West Pittston, where we’ll work to repair a porch badly damaged in the flood more than two and a half years ago, and to prepare Trinity’s grounds for a special free community dinner to commemorate the third anniversary of the flood.  Many neighbors are still finding their way to a new normal after the flood, and this dinner will provide a way for us to listen to them, find the still-unmet needs, and let them know that the Episcopal Church is still there for them. 

We can’t wait to see what we get done tomorrow and the rest of this week!  You are welcome to join us and we hope you wil come meet the amazing people working so hard to help our region and diocese in ministry to our communities.

Thank you to our missioners and new friends, and to all help the world know that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the Midst of Life’s Storms…

Faithfully,

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem

 newsletter for

Start of the day–missioners tackle the wall paper on
St. George’s Hall wall

The wallpaper comes down…

Same wall eight hours later…

Sanding and painting in All Saints Hall
community room

Removing paint from the grates…

Painting the ceiling

Before–a divider wall…

After–a new counter on casters!

Taking down the lecturn

Frs. Major and Pearson reaching new heights…

In the midst of work, Noon Prayer time…

Today, the missioners enjoy lunch…
soon, a soup kitchen to feed those in need…

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: Mission Trip Day 1

 

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

They’re Here!


Missioners from Florida, formerly from Florida, and from Buffalo
arrive to join in our flood recovery and outreach efforts.

 

July 27, 2014  

Dear Friends,

Today we were so excited to welcome our new friends from Shepherd of the Hills Episcopal Church in central Florida to join us for our week-long mission event.  After spending two days or more on the road driving (and enduring a blown tire and a few other adventures along the way) the group arrived safely on Saturday.  Some even drove from Florida to Buffalo, New York, to pick up a grandson and then back here to Pennsylvania to join the mission trip!

On Sunday, the ten missioners joined the congregation of Trinity West Pittston for Holy Eucharist and were then the guests of honor at a ziti dinner provided by Trinity’s Parish Life Events Team. 

Bright and early on Monday morning, the missioners will meet at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center in Nanticoke to start the day with Morning Prayer before beginning a full day of work at the center.  We are also expecting some help from our local parishes, and our Florida guests are looking forward to joining with others to share work, worship and fellowship.

We are so glad and grateful for the presence of Karen Eddy, Bette Patz, Art Eddy, Howard Papke, Linda Papke, Bob Powers, Jane Powers, Jack Holeman, Lynn Meyer, and Zack Nadeau.  They are truly generous and faithful to give so much of their time, talent and treasure to travel so far to join in the mission and ministry of our region and diocese.  We also thank the people of Shepherd of the Hills parish and of St. Barnabas Parish in Lafayette, Louisiana, who helped fund the trip and a donation to cover supplies for the work to be done.  What a blessing and example they are to all of us!

On behalf of our Florida missioners and all who will join in the work before us this week, we ask your prayers for this time of service, that it be a time where we listen, learn, and build relationships while we work to better serve our community, that all partipating find it to be a faithbuilding experience, and that God keep us all safe.

And if you would like to meet our sisters and brothers from Florida, there is still time to join in the mission trip fun.  We’ll be at St George’s Regional Center on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday and in West Pittston on Tuesday.  Email jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com or call St. George’s Center at 570-335-7875.

Thank you to our missioners and new friends, and to all who help the world know that our Episcopal Church is a Shield in the Midst of Life’s Storms…

Faithfully,

Faithfully,

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem  newsletter for 

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: June 20, 2014

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

 

 

Severe Weather Damage–
make your help count!

 



 

 

June 20, 2014  

Dear Friends,
 

Nature's threats keep coming, as anyone who watches the news can see.  Barely a day goes by that doesn't bring word of another part of our country or the world being afflicted by fires, floods, and tornadoes or even pelted by baseball-sized hail.

Our inclination is to want to help these communities, and we can and should.  Please take a moment to read some helpful tips from a United Church of Christ minister who lived and served through tornadoes in 2012.  "As one who has worked closely with tornado recovery efforts," the Rev. Jennifer Mills-Knutsen wrote, "I would like to offer these DO’s and DON’T’s, so that you can help in ways that are the most helpful, and avoid the ways that are not."  Click here to read her tips, which are also available as a
regular part of the right sidebar of this newsletter under "How to Help After a Disaster."

Please note that Rev. Mills-Knutsen points out that the recovery for those affected doesn't end when the news coverage does.  We can attest to that here in West Pittston, where homes and businesses still bear scars from the 2011 floods and many of our neighbors still struggle with some aspect of their recovery from this disaster.  

This is where our Episcopal Church is so vital–we are there for the long haul, working to help our neighbors for as long as it takes.  There will be parishes in the areas affected by these most recent storms looking to help their neighbors, just as churches throughout the country and in our region work to help our neighbors who were affected two and three or more years ago.  For many, the resources to do this will come from Episcopal Relief & Development.  Please consider ongoing support to this important arm of our National Church, and help them to "heal a hurting world" by clicking on the link in the right sidebar.

And for those parishes who are continuing to work on preparedness plans, please feel free to email us at jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com with any questions or concerns you have encountered.  With the seemingly endless threats from bad weather having your parish prepared is more important than ever, so if you need any assistance, please don't hesitate to ask.

Thank you for all you do to help our neighbors know that the Episcopal Church is their Shield in the Midst of Life's Storms.

 

 

 

Faithfully,

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem  newsletter for 

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

 

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

 

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.
 

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: April 8, 2014

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

 

Prayers for US Disaster Program and CHAIR-ity begins at home…

 

April 8, 2014  

Dear Friends,

As the news continues to bring almost daily word of new disasters in our country and around the world, I invite you to keep in prayer the work of Episcopal Relief & Development's US Disaster Program and all who work to help those facing nature's wrath.  Just this week we learn of more lives lost and affected by tornados and floods, while others struggle with the loss and damage of the Washington mudslide (read more about Episcopal Relief & Development's work in the Oso mudslide here).  Please pray for those affected and all those who respond, and consider if you can a gift to Episcopal Relief & Development to help our Church respond generously to those in need.

If you prefer to help closer to home, please consider a donation to the "Chair-ity Fund" at St. George's Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.  We plan to start a feeding program in the outreach center, and while we can invite people to come to the table and be fed, we have no chairs to go with the tables already acquired. To move forward with outreach and firmly reestablish an Episcopal presence in this underserved area of the diocese, St. George's regional center will need approximately 90 new chairs at a cost of $25 each.  While this cost is out of our reach with available resources, we're prayerfully hoping that some individuals or church groups might see this as
a special Lenten offering to this regional ministry.

Please consider offering a little "Chair-ity" right here in our diocese to support this new Episcopal outreach program.  Click here to make a donation via PayPal or here to visit the episcopalreliefnepa.org web page and scroll to the PayPal link at the bottom to donate, or, checks with a notation of "Chairs" can be sent to St. George's Outreach, c/o 220 Montgomery Avenue, West Pittston, PA 18643. Thank you to those parishes and individuals who have already responded to this request, and to those who are planning on contributing to this effort to help the regional
center help those challenged by personal and natural disasters.

And for those parishes who are continuing to work on preparedness plans, please feel free to email us at jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com with any questions or concerns you have encountered.  With the seemingly endless threats from bad weather, having your parish prepared is more important than ever, so if you need any assistance, please don't hesitate to ask.

Thank you for all you do to help our neighbors know that the Episcopal Church is their Shield in the Midst of Life's Storms.

 

Faithfully,

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem  newsletter for 

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committee

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

 

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

 

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.
 

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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Shield in the Storm: March 27, 2014

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A Shield….
in the midst of life’s storms  

How YOU Can Help Protect West Pittston from Future Floods; Lamplight: New Google Tool Helps in Disasters; Chair-ity Continues

March 27, 2014  

Dear Friends,

The neighborhood grassroots organization West Pittston Tomorrow has asked for our help in gathering petition signatures in support of a levee system to protect the borough from the Susquehanna River.  All area residents–not just those who live in West Pittston–can sign this petition to protect this flood-prone community and its residents.  Click here to sign an online version of the petition and here to print, sign and mail a paper version.  Visit West Pittston Tomorrow's official web site here.

Once you've signed the petition, I encourage you to check out the latest issue of Lamplight, Episcopal Relief & Development's monthly newsletter for disaster preparedness and relief.  This month's issue includes an interesting article on how the Google tool Fusion Tables and an Excel spreadsheet of your congregation or group can help you pinpoint the physical location of each person's residence, which can be very important in determining who is affected by a particular disaster.  Click here to read Lamplight, and here to get your very own free emailed
Lamplight newsletter each month.

I also invite you to visit the disaster recovery & preparedness site for the Diocese of Bethlehem, episcopalreliefnepa.org, by clicking here or on the link in the right hand column of this message.  This is the best way for you to stay up to date on all disaster preparedness and current and future recovery efforts in the diocese, as well as all activities at St. George's Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.  At this time, St. George's is continuing its Chair-ity drive to raise funds for new chairs to go with the tables already purchased and on hand.  To move forward with outreach and
firmly reestablish an Episcopal presence in this underserved area of the diocese, St. George's regional center will need approximately 90 new chairs to go with tables already acquired.  The chairs cost $25 each and while the total cost is out of our reach with available resources, we're prayerfully hoping that some individuals or church groups might see this as a special Lenten offering to this regional ministry.  Please consider offering a little "Chair-ity" right here in our diocese to support this new Episcopal outreach program.  Checks with a notation of "Chairs" can be sent to St. George's Outreach, c/o 220 Montgomery Avenue, West Pittston, PA 18643.
 Thank you to those parishes and individuals who have already responded to this request, and to those who are planning on contributing to this effort to help the regional center help
those challenged by personal and natural disasters.

And for those parishes who are continuing to work on preparedness plans, please feel free to email us at jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com with any questions or concerns you have encountered.  With the seemingly endless threats from bad weather, having your parish prepared is more important than ever, so if you need any assistance, please don't hesitate to ask.

 

Thank you for all you do to help our neighbors know that the Episcopal Church is their Shield in the Midst of Life's Storms.

 

Faithfully,

Rev. John C. Major
Interim Representative to Episcopal Relief Development for the Diocese of Bethlehem  newsletter for 

Contact Us

The Rev. John C. Major
Diocese of Bethlehem Representative
to Episcopal Relief & Development

jmajordiobetherd@hotmail.com
 

 

Prayer of the Diocese of Bethlehem
Disaster Relief & Community Resiliency Committe
e

God of love and hope, you have called us to serve you in ministering to those affected by
the storms and trials of this world.  Grant us courage to persevere through the challenges
of this task, grace to bring your healing and hope to the suffering and afflicted, and sincere
and faithful hearts to share the good news that you are always near.  Grant this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who calms the wind, stills the waves, and brings peace in the midst of storms.

 

Diocesan Disaster and Community Resiliency Committee

Canon Andrew Gerns            Canon Charles Cesaretti           Rev. Charles Warwick         Rev. Timothy Alleman
Rev. Jane Williams       Rev. Eddie Lopez        Rev. John Major        Janine Ungvarsky

 

***********

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.
 

This email was sent by Diobeth Episcopal Relief and Development at St. George’s Regional Disaster Recovery & Outreach Center.408 East Main Street  |  Nanticoke, PA 18634  |  570-335-7875www.episcopalreliefnepa.orgUnsubscribe immediately with SureRemove
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