By Carl Stagner
While Labor Day weekend may have been a picnic for many in the United States, it was nothing short of disaster for those distressed and displaced due to Hurricane Dorian. The 185-mile-per-hour winds struck the Bahamas with torrential rainfall and left widespread destruction in its wake. The Church of God would not stand idly by, however, as the days and weeks that followed were marked by an outpouring of generosity. In total, more than $25,000 have come in since the hurricane, and news of such an impact is only beginning to come to light.
Bishop Tejado Hanchell, of Mt. Calvary Holy Church in Winston-Salem, has served as a liaison between Church of God Ministries and the relief workers in the Bahamas. In a conversation with John Johnson, disaster relief coordinator for Church of God Ministries, Hanchell offered a report on the tremendous need and how that need is being met with the dollars donated.
“At present, we have provided over four hundred families with groceries, hot meals, and clothing,” he explains. “Additionally, our ministry has helped to arrange shelter for dozens of families who were left homeless from the storm. On my recent trip to the Bahamas, I personally sat with several families who shared the horrors of their ordeals. I was struck by one woman who stopped by our ministry and received food and clothing for her family of nine. She broke down in tears and told our office manager that she had not cried since the storm. She was so busy being strong for her children that she had not allowed herself to cry. Our ministry gave her the gift of tears. She was able to release several weeks’ worth of pent-up frustration, pain, and fear.”
Hanchell continues: “Your donations will help us continue to positively impact lives and families like hers. I was overjoyed to hear that Church of God Ministries has raised over $25,000 for the Bahamas hurricane relief efforts! To God be the glory! We look forward to using those funds to help those who are hurting and to share the light of Christ in their time of darkness.”
Shortly after Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas, Tim Clarke, chair of the General Assembly of the Church of God urged congregations to set aside the fourth Sunday of September to collect love offerings for Dorian disaster relief. Jim Lyon, general director of Church of God Ministries, echoed this refrain online during his September Facebook Live event. The challenge was issued, and the Church of God responded.
To the Church of God, Bishop Hanchell exclaims, “Thank you, again, for your amazing generosity. May God continue to bless the work of your hands!”
Thank you, Church of God!
In crises where an immediate response is critical for relief, Church of God Ministries advances funds in anticipation of a gracious outpouring of donations from churches and individuals. Such advances are made from a limited Disaster Relief Fund maintained by Church of God Ministries for emergency response to disaster. Disaster Relief contributions are utilized to bring relief to those affected by disasters worldwide. Give now at https://faithlife.com/coggm-c/give?funds=4743. Donations can also be mailed to Church of God Ministries, PO Box 2420, Anderson, IN 46018; please note that your gift is for Disaster Relief, Project #45.04502. Learn more about Church of God Disaster Relief at https://www.jesusisthesubject.org/disaster-relief/. Thank you!