United Methodist Relief Agency Needs Funds for Middle East Crisis
NEW YORK, NY, July 25, 2006--The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) today issued an urgent appeal for funds to assist civilians caught in the renewed fighting in the Middle East.
"Our funds for Middle East emergencies are painfully low," said the Rev. Paul Dirdak, UMCOR director. "As Christians and as a denomination, we need to equip ourselves to do our part in responding to humanitarian needs in this tragic situation."
Contributions should go to the Middle East Emergency Fund (#601740) of the Advance for Christ and His Church, the United Methodist designated mission giving fund. (See giving instructions below.)
Dirdak said that this general fund allows UMCOR to respond to civilian needs on any front in the confrontation. "We are concerned for all civilians in this ongoing crisis," he said. "We have a number of options for channeling assistance into Lebanon, Gaza, and Israel. We are deeply involved in the dialogue among humanitarian groups as to how to best respond to the emergency."
"We can do very little unless the United Methodist people are, yet again, willing to dig deep into their pockets for dollars that can translate prayers into action." A small contribution of $5,000 has been sent from general UMCOR funds for emergency aid in Lebanon. Another $20,000 grant is in the emergency approval process.
UMCOR has years of experience in working with refugees in the Middle East and in assisting families and individuals affected by periodic wars there. It has several partners with which it can work in Lebanon, Gaza, and the West Bank. In Israel, the agency relies on United Methodist missionaries to identify clinics and other facilities serving those in greatest need.
"The humanitarian aid of The United Methodist Church knows no political or national boundaries," Dirdak said. "In recent weeks, we have been concerned with families in Gaza affected by Israel bombing. Now we are also concerned about civilians in Lebanon and about civilians in Israel whose lives are being torn apart by the military action."
Give to UMCOR Advance Middle East Emergency #601740. Please write the Advance # and name and in the memo line of your check.
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put your gift in the offering plate on Sunday.
By Mail Make your check to UMCOR and mail to
PO Box 9068,
New York, NY 10087
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