Thursday, October 8, 2015

Our Synod Responds to Carolinas Flood

LCMS Disaster Response | Give to Disaster Relief

Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

Experts are calling it a 1000-year flood event, where much of the southeastern coast of the U.S. has now been declared a disaster zone.

In the past week, well over 20 inches of rain has fallen across South Carolina alone. Rivers continue to rise. Thousands have been rescued from cars and homes amid rushing waters. News reports include over 500 roads under water and at least 18 failed or collapsed dams. Southeastern District disaster coordinators report LCMS congregations and schools have suffered damage that will impact their ministry in and to local communities.

As the skies clear and the full scale of this round of flooding is laid bare, LCMS Disaster Response is working in partnership with the Southeastern District and its congregations to coordinate and support a measured, intentional and effective response for those most affected. Here is a timeline and status of our Synod’s response:
  • Monday, Oct. 5: President Harrison and Rev. Ross Johnson, director of LCMS Disaster Response in the Office of National Mission, telephone Southeastern District President John Denninger to see if immediate help from LCMS Disaster Response is needed.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 6: President Denninger asks LCMS Disaster Response to join his team on the field to help assess and plan a full-scale response, noting that they will be hampered by road closures and communications outages.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 7: LCMS Disaster Response deploys to the disaster zone to walk alongside Southeastern District leaders and activates its standard process of staging assets for an effective supporting effort.
  • In the coming days and weeks: As damage assessments are completed, our Synod will move to ensure disaster response teams are prepared and equipped to move quickly and provide the best relief and restoration for those seriously affected by the flooding.
  • Immediately and ongoing: Direct grant assistance is being offered to those congregations and communities most affected. Initial assistance is typically gift cards and funding for temporary housing.  Grant amounts are determined in light of Synod’s current disaster-relief financial capacity and funds on-hand.
  • Long-term: As joint plans for a longer-term Synod mercy effort are determined, based on the assessment and capacity of the district and Synod, regular updates will be provided.
Online gifts of disaster relief funds can be given at and checks can be mailed to: The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, P.O. Box 66861, St. Louis, MO 63166-6861. Please specify “Disaster Response”* on the memo line or in an enclosed note. Questions about giving can be directed to LCMS Mission Advancement at 888-930-4438, or emailed to:

Prayers and offerings will make a difference in the lives of those most affected.

The LCMS will provide updates on our response at, Reporter Online, and on LCMS Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

We know those affected have the sure and certain promise that our heavenly Father will supply what is needed in this body and life. Through King David, God reminds us in Psalm 18:16:

"He sent from on high, He took me; He drew me out of many waters."

We know God's provision and care will come through His people using the gifts He has entrusted to us in order to provide rescue, relief and restoration under the full measure of Christ's mercy. In the midst of such tribulations, in Him alone we find supreme comfort and hope.

*LCMS Disaster Response will utilize contributions given in the wake of this event for a measured, deliberate and effective response effort in partnership with the Southeastern District. In the event gifts from God’s people exceed what the District and its congregations require in an effective relief, recovery and restoration response, remaining donated funds will be retained in a specific account restricted for the exclusive use of LCMS Disaster Response in future relief and response situations, including the training of local volunteer disaster responders. Disaster gifts will NOT be re-directed to work or expenditures unrelated to disaster response and relief work. For more information, please contact LCMS Mission Advancement.
If you have questions about this email or need assistance, please contact the LCMS Church Information Center at 888-THE LCMS (843-5267) or
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
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