Debris left behind by coastal flooding in Westport.
Photo by Rev. Laura Whitmore
How You Can Help
1. Pray for the people and communities across the Caribbean and United States impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
2. To assist people impacted by this disaster, please make a gift payable to your congregation marked for “Hurricane Sandy Response” with the request they be sent through your Conference office on to Wider Church Ministries.
Send gifts, made out to the Missionary Society of Connecticut and marked in the memo portion “Hurricane Sandy Response” to Connecticut Conference UCC, 125 Sherman St., Hartford, CT 06105.
Prepare Church World Service Clean Up and Hygiene Kits. They are urgently needed now and following all disasters.
by Eric Anderson
HARTFORD (10/31/2012) -- Despite severe communication disruptions in the worst-hit sections of Connecticut, pastors and church leaders have labored to inspect their communities and their church facilities throughout the day, and report their condition to the Connecticut Conference. So far, none have reported catastrophic damage to their buildings, but many neighborhoods have suffered greatly from the impact of Hurricane Sandy's high winds and high waters.
A number of church buildings remained without power alongside many of their members and neighbors, hampering efforts to provide services to their communities. First Congregational Church UCC in Branford had stocked supplies, but without electricity could not function as a relief center. At United Congregational Church UCC in Bridgeport, they have asked for assistance in meeting higher needs for their food and clothing aid programs.
In contrast, Union Memorial Church UCC in Stamford retained power, and church members with utilities were welcoming fellow members without into their homes. Pastor the Rev. Blaine Edele said, "This is the small church at its best."
Wind stripped shingles from rooftops at several churches, including Bridgeport's United Church and Olivet Congregational Church UCC, and nearby Trumbull Congregational Church UCC. United Congregational Church UCC in Norwalk found that their chimney flue had been blown down, and without it they cannot light their furnace.
Churches in Westport and Greenwich, whose low-lying downtown sections suffered heavy flooding, remained above water and were in good shape. Inland, however, the Congregational Church of East Hampton UCC lost its electric meter when a falling tree plucked it from the side of the building. There was no fire, but pastor the Rev. Thomas Kennedy believes it will be some time before power can be restored.
Conference staff continue to reach out to churches from whom they have not heard, and raise their prayers for all those who have suffered losses in the storm.
The Rev. Eric S. Anderson is Minister of Communications and Technology for the Connecticut Conference UCC.
|After Sandy: Photos contributed from around Connecticut.|