By Carl Stagner
UPDATE, May 9, 2017: Church of God Ministries Disaster Relief has just sent $5,000 for flood relief in Missouri as cleanup efforts have only just begun at First Church of God in Doniphan, Missouri. Initial assessments suggest repair costs could exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars. That’s why your help is still crucial. Donate today! Church facilities, including the parsonage, were insured, but indications are that as little as 15 percent of the total repair cost will be covered. Renovations are underway in the Family Life Center so the congregation can resume worship at the church property (currently, the congregation is meeting at another local church) before the sanctuary repair is complete.
WORK TEAMS: Missouri Ministries of the Church of God has reported that they will be helping to schedule groups in the next week or so. Supplies of water, gloves, and more are needed. Please contact Missouri Ministries for more information at 573-265-8545 or visit www.cogamo.org/contact/.
Some locals say they’ve never seen it this bad. Reports indicate that between six and twelve inches of rain fell across parts of Missouri over the past week, with several more inches expected. Homes and businesses have been destroyed during this ongoing disaster, which has already claimed two lives. Water levels rose to record highs at fourteen different locations along the state’s rivers, even breaking a few records held for more than a hundred years. A few hundred roads were shut down, and many remain closed. Unfortunately, Church of God congregations have not escaped the water’s wrath.
First Church of God in Doniphan, Missouri, was one of the hardest-hit. According to Pastor Larry Earl, their family life center was submerged under seven feet of water. Offices, including his, are a total loss. In the sanctuary, the grand piano was turned upside down and the organ was moved from the front of the room to the back. Ceiling tiles came down throughout. Pastor Greg Mason and his wife Tina, who have lived in the parsonage, are also dealing with the total loss of their home—and everything inside—as water crested above their roof’s edge.
While flood waters have come within a few inches of other Church of God buildings in Missouri without significant damage, these locations are not out of the woods yet. Numerous families and individuals of Church of God congregations have also been affected to one degree or another. In an e-mail update from Missouri Ministries of the Church of God, state administrative pastor Howard Megill acknowledged that there may be damage to churches that simply has not yet been reported. In fact, total assessment of damage may not be possible until the flood waters recede. But you don’t have to wait until flood waters recede to act. Donate to Disaster Relief right now.
As more information becomes available, Church of God Ministries will pass it along to you. In the meantime, please continue to pray for Missouri.
Consider a generous donation to the Disaster Relief Fund. Give online at give.JesusIsTheSubject.org/disasterrelief or mail your donation to Church of God Ministries, PO Box 2420, Anderson, IN 46018; please note that your gift is for Disaster Relief, Project # 45.04502.
Gifts to the Disaster Relief Fund at Church of God Ministries are used to respond to needs identified on the ground. All gifts to the Disaster Relief Fund are used for disaster relief domestically and internationally at the discretion of the Disaster Relief Committee. For more information about the Church of God, visit www.JesusIsTheSubject.org.