Sunday Bulletin Article – March 24, 2013 – Sandy Update
The largest and most powerful hurricane to ever hit the northeastern United States, Superstorm Sandy was especially damaging to New Jersey. Of the 2.7million people who lost power, many spent weeks without electricity. More than 250,000 New Jersey households sustained damage to their residences, 106 United Methodist church properties were damaged, and five churches and seven parsonages were left uninhabitable.
The people of HOPE, as usual, were quick to respond raising $5,000 through a special church offering. In addition, our Youth Ministry collected 47 cleaning buckets and cleaning supplies that were immediately sent to areas in New Jersey that were most affected. Our youth are also scheduled to send two summer mission teams to Union Beach, New Jersey, one of the most devastated towns in the region, to assist in the ongoing work to restore that town. The storm surge from Sandy left 1,600 of the town’s 2,100 homes damaged or destroyed. Two and a half months later, families continue to struggle to find permanent housing, make up for lost income, rebuild businesses and restore what was lost.
“We won’t know until we get closer to the date exactly what we will be working on,” HOPE’s Youth Pastor Dave Falcone said. “But, the township administrator assures us there’s still plenty left to do.” While officials have not put a price tag on all the damage from Sandy, the level of destruction is staggering and restoration could take years. HOPE’s Middle School Mission Trip will take place from July 7 to July 13 and the High School Mission Trip will go from August 4 to August 10. Between 80 and 100 students and leaders are expected to participate.
The Gateway South Sandy Relief Fund continues to help with the relief, recovery, rebuilding and renewal of those affected by Superstorm Sandy, with a focus on the elderly and low-income residents as well as parsonages and church buildings. You can donate by check to HOPE Church with a notation indicating “Sandy Relief” or you can give online at gnjumc.org.
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