The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is serving as the denomination’s conduit for financial contributions. A request for an offering on March 20 is being made by the denomination’s Council of Bishops. To give, click here: Pacific Emergency Advance number is 3021317. One hundred percent of every Advance gift goes to the designated cause.
“Our emergency relief and long-term rehabilitation in Japan will involve our long-term mission partners with whom many of our missionaries and other mission personnel already work,” said Thomas Kemper, general secretary of the General Board of Global Ministries, of which UMCOR is a part. “Japan is a highly developed nation, and we will depend heavily on our partners to help us focus our resources in areas of greatest need.”
The situation in Japan at present is not conducive to relief volunteers coming in from other countries. Neither UMCOR nor the General Board of Global Ministries facilitates volunteers in disaster zones unless they are requested by local partners or government agencies. No such requests have been received to date from Japan. Relief Supplies:
The situation in Japan following the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami remains volatile because of uncertainty about radiation from the damaged nuclear reactors.
UMCOR welcomes layette and school kits but is uncertain whether or where such items will be permitted to enter Japan. Any kits received will be distributed where they are most needed in the world.
The Rev. Cynthia Fierro Harvey, UMCOR’s top executive, urged prayers for those affected by the disaster. “Once again, in the wake of disaster and in the face of widespread need, we rely on the ever-expansive generosity of United Methodists and all people of goodwill to help us respond to those whose lives have suddenly been turned upside down,” she said.