Update on disaster response to December 2021 tornadoes

February 07, 2022

UMC churches and congregations across the Kentucky Annual Conference remain hard at work in partnership with disaster-relief organizations in the recovery effort from the tornadoes that hit western Kentucky on Dec. 11, 2021.
“The Kentucky Conference, through the generosity of its congregations and other conferences and their churches, have been actively supporting the local ministries of our churches in the impacted areas to continue to meet immediate needs of those people and families impacted by the storms,” said Jim Morse, the Conference’s Disaster Response Coordinator. 
The Kentucky Conference is collaborating with the Tennessee-Western Kentucky Conference to aid hard-hit areas from Bowling Green to Mayfield. Morse said churches are “providing shelter, food, relief supplies, spiritual and emotional care, hard, feet, and strong backs.” He added that several churches from Madisonville to Bowling Green also have provided hospitality and lodging to volunteer reams from across the state and region.
Churches are supporting efforts to meet direct and immediate financial needs such as gasoline vouchers, help defraying the cost of hosting volunteer teams or donations centers, and general efforts in relief and recovery efforts, Morse said.
“As the relief efforts continue, we are looking toward what long-term recovery may look like for the various communities and are working with Kentucky volunteer organizations active in disaster and the local communities to help them organize their Long Term Recovery groups to be the local coordination and guidance for each community’s recovery,” Morse said. 
“Throughout the disaster relief and recovery efforts, the generosity of people has been incredible to almost overwhelming,’ he added. “Now, as we go forward, we are praying that the generosity continues in the donation of volunteer teams and monetary support as the rebuilding starts. The recovery efforts will be a marathon of work for the next three to five years. Our local churches are committed to that marathon, as is our Conference and the TWK Conference, and we invite you to come join us.”
Here’s how to help:

Long Term Recover Volunteer Form – This form is specifically for those who are not credentialed for Early Response Teams.

Please continue to keep those affected by the tornadoes in your prayers and please continue your financial support.

Here are a few specific ways you can support our disaster response efforts:

  • Please encourage individuals to give to our Conference Disaster Relief Ministry Fund.
  • Please consider a special offering at your church to receive funds for our Disaster Relief Ministry Fund.
  • The Conference Council on Finance & Administration (CFA) is making an initial contribution of $50,000 to our Disaster Relief Ministry Fund. CFA is also committing 10% of December Our Mission Covenant contributions to our Disaster Relief Ministry Fund.

Checks can be mailed to:
Kentucky Conference, Disaster Response Ministry Fund
7400 Floydsburg Road
Crestwood, KY 40014
Please note “Disaster Response: Advance# 200902” in the memo.

You can also give electronically via our secure online giving portal: Kentucky Conference: Disaster Relief Donations (kyumc.org)

Churches begin long process of recovery from tornadoes: An update from UMNews on the December Tornadoes