Violent storms that included massive tornadoes hit Central and Western Massachusetts the evening of June 1, affecting four Unitarian Universalist congregations. The Clara Barton District has already advanced funds to meet immediate needs in these congregations and established a fund to support further relief efforts.
Funds will be used first toward direct and long term relief for UU congregations, members and staff directly impacted by the storms and then toward wider needs in those communities. Contributions toward this fund can be made by accessing this link: http://www.uua.kintera.org/matornado. If you would prefer to send a check, please make your check payable to the UUA and write in the memo line “Massachusetts Tornado Relief Fund”. Gifts can be mailed to:
Unitarian Universalist Association
Stewardship and Development
Attn: Gift Processing
25 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02108
For congregations taking up special collections, please refer to downloadable instructions online about how to return your gifts to the UUA. Please return the Gift Information Form to the UUA with your collection.
Donations received to June 16, 2011 total over $33,500. Gifts of any size are still welcome!
Affected are Springfield, Brookfield, Sturbridge and Monson. A staff member of the Springfield congregation sustained significant damage to personal property. Families in both the Sturbridge and Brookfield congregations lost their homes. And the top of the steeple of the UU Parish of Monson was torn away (see accompanying image). Fortunately, no one was harmed in these incidents, though the tornadoes are responsible for at least four deaths. Governor Deval Patrick has declared a state of emergency in Massachusetts and has asked for the help of up to a thousand National Guard to assist with relief efforts.
Mid-South District Establishes
2011 SEVERE STORM FUND
And Invites Contributions
Communities and families across the South were devastated by the storms and tornados of April 27th! Unitarian Universalist folks in Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and Tennesseehave major property damage and are reeling from the effects of the storms. Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was particularly hard hit, and a number of UU families there are without their homes. Mid-South District has established the 2011 Severe Storm Fund to assist Unitarian Universalist families and their communities as they repair their lives and properties after the tornado-filled storms.
Congregations, individuals and other gatherings may help out by sending contributions to the address below or donating through the Mid-South web site: www.msduua.org . Thanks to all for care and support!
Checks should be payable to “Mid-South District,” noted: “2011 Severe Storm Fund,” and mailed to
Mid-South District Bookkeeper
4605 Elkins Ave., Nashville, TN 37209
Donations to the fund may also be made by clicking on the ‘Donate’ button on the front page of the MSD web site at www.msduua.org.
Tragedy in Knoxville
On Sunday, July 27, 2008, a man opened fire on the congregation of the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee, during a children’s performance. Two people were killed and seven were injured. The Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations and the Trauma Response Ministry responded: