Even as Hurricane Maria continues her destructive course in the Caribbean and residents surrounding Mexico’s capital city frantically work to dig through rubble left by a major earthquake on Tuesday, Sept. 19, the LCMS Office of International Mission and LCMS Disaster Response are working to connect with our missionaries and partners in these two regions to determine the scope of the disaster and how the church might be able to respond.
In Puerto Rico, we evacuated our missionary family ahead of Maria’s landfall there, and our team in the Dominican Republic is finishing preparations to weather the storm. Once the storm passes, our regional leadership team will work with local church leaders to determine how the church might bear Christ’s mercy.
In Mexico City, our two missionary families are safe following the earthquake. In coming days, they will assess the impact of this earthquake on the local church, the communities, and individuals among whom they work.
We will provide updates as we know more about the scope of these disasters.
Are these being added to the LCMS Disaster Response? I see Hurricane Harvey and Irma Relief, but am curious if there will be an outlet for Mexico’s earthquakes and Puerto Rico’s Hurricane Maria?
The LCMS has set up a specific fund for disaster response in Puerto Rico. There are several ways to give:
• Text “LCMSPuertoRico” to 41444 to make a mobile gift.
• Call 888-930-4438 to give over the phone.
• Make checks payable to “The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod” with the memo line or a note indicating the gift is for “Puerto Rico Relief,” “Disaster Response” or “Hurricane Relief” and send to:
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
P.O. Box 66861
St. Louis, MO 63166-6861
In the coming days, a team of LCMS disaster leaders and missionaries will travel to the island to begin assessment and planning of our response efforts. We will be pushing updates as we have them on the plans and progress. Financial gifts are the most useful and versatile way to provide help, allowing those on the ground to determine needs and apply those donations for the purchase of items needed to help with recovery efforts. If you are wondering about contributing durable goods, CBS News recently issued a fresh release of a 2016 story about how disaster relief can sometimes get in the way.