Photo: Paul Jeffrey/ACT Alliance
In our weekly updates, we share stories of our presence and impact around the world: from disaster response, to refugee and immigration ministry, to ongoing sustainable development projects in impoverished areas. Catch up on updates you missed, or find stories you want to read and share again! Or, subscribe to receive weekly email updates.
On March 3, 2020, a tornado devastated the Nashville metro area. New Covenant Christian Church immediately went to work serving their neighbors, and then quickly had to modify their response in light of COVID-19 restrictions. We recently spoke with their Pastor, Rev. Dr. Judy Cummings, for an update. At Week of Compassion, we frequently share that disaster relief is complex and often draws attention to existing inequalities in a community. The convergence of a tornado with a pandemic amplifies just how glaring those inequalities are; how they affect recovery; and how they create even more challenges in a time of crisis.
A colorful kite flies against a clear blue sky, its long tail dancing behind it. It’s an unlikely sign of hope in an unlikely place.
Imagine that you and your family have had to leave your home because of a violent conflict. You are living in a tent among other refugees. You have found work and community, but life is still difficult.
Then imagine that a global pandemic brings even more challenges and more restrictions into your life--not to mention the threat of illness.
This is the reality for Syrian refugees living in north Jordan.
The Week of Compassion Board of Stewards held its annual spring meeting virtually on May 27 to discuss the impact of COVID-19 in the United States and Canada and around the world. The meeting was originally scheduled to take place in Puerto Rico, but COVID-19 halted travel and is affecting the ongoing recovery work from Hurricane Maria. This pandemic is impacting all of the work and partners Week of Compassion supports for disaster response, refugee assistance, and sustainable development.
On Sunday, Week of Compassion learned from our partners in the Philippines that Typhoon Vongfong had made landfall in Luzon. Evacuations were complicated on this highly populated island because of COVID-19. Meanwhile, Cyclone Amphan is rapidly gaining strength in the South Pacific and threatens many extremely vulnerable areas-- including Cox’s Bazaar, the refugee camp in Bangladesh where more than 1 million Rohingya people live. Last week, the first case of COVID-19 was reported in the camp. Clearly, this is a dangerous confluence of events in parts of the world where people are already struggling from the effects of poverty and violence. We are grateful for our partners who continue to work for the health and safety of vulnerable people, even in the most challenging circumstances. Please join us in prayer for those affected by, and in the path of, these storms. We will share more as we learn more.
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I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. (Ephesians 1:15-16)
On May 28 of 2019, a series of severe tornadoes caused widespread damage throughout Ohio, especially in and around the city of Dayton.
On this Giving Tuesday, Week of Compassion lifts up the work of our partners to provide relief and respond to the effects of COVID-19. Here is just one of many stories about how we are working to help save lives during this difficult time.
On Tuesday, May 5, many will participate in a special day of charitable giving known as Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday originally emerged around Thanksgiving as a day of generosity, but this movement is gaining traction right now because so many ministries and services are being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In a time when the work of serving others is so important, the ministries of so many of our partners become even more vital. The generosity of donors is even more important right now as we seek to serve our neighbors --here, and around the world.
In early March, the Nashville Metro Area was devastated by severe tornadoes. Twenty-six people were killed, more than 300 were injured, and thousands experienced property damage or loss. New Covenant Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) responded immediately, with support from Week of Compassion--in spite of damage to their own church facility. With so many of their neighbors in need, the church became a hub of neighborhood relief activity. Church members and members of the wider community stepped in to volunteer, collecting and distributing needed supplies, assessing damage in the area, and serving hot meals from a tent on the church lawn.