Dear Pastors and Laity of the Texas Annual Conference,

We urgently need your help.

Tropical Storm Imelda stalled over Southeast Texas on September 18, 2019, dropping 43 inches of rain throughout day and night.  By 11:00 p.m. that evening, water had risen in two Southeast District parsonages, and the pastors and their families were forced to evacuate. They soon discovered the churches they serve, FUMC Winnie and FUMC Vidor, were also flooded. The quick response of members of the congregations—many of whom themselves were flooded for the second time in two years—prevented more extensive damage to the churches. The following day, the members of Beaumont St James UMC discovered water in their office area, the Narthex and fellowship hall. 

All three of these churches were uninsured due to the high cost of flood insurance. In addition, due to the frequency of flooding in the area, the Southeast District has experienced a shrinking population, so there are fewer congregants to bear the cost of restoration. That’s why we are seeking your help. The beauty of the United Methodist Church is our connection to one another beyond our local church. Getting the churches back up and running to full capacity is a sign of hope for the whole community as people rebuild after the storm.

Will you and your congregation join us in restoring these churches and parsonages? Our goal is to raise $330,000 through a special Thanksgiving offering on either Sunday, November 17 or Sunday, November 24.  Any funds raised above the amount needed to repair the churches and parsonages will be used rebuild homes of people who were impacted by Tropical Storm Imelda.  

Donations may be placed in the offering plate at any United Methodist church, with "SE Imelda Recovery" marked in the memo line, or they may be sent to:  

Treasurer’s Office
The Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
5215 Main St.
Houston, Texas 77002

An online option for donations will be made available by November 15.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office at 409-833-9510 or by email at abesser@txcumc.org

Thank you in advance for your generous response—and may God Bless you!

Sincerely,
Alicia Besser
Southeast District Superintendent