By Neal Christie
United Methodists continue to pray and respond to the war now being waged in Ukraine. On February 24, Russian military forces invaded Ukraine, causing hundreds of thousands of people to flee their homes. US government aid officials report that the people of Ukraine have been caught in the middle of conflict for nearly eight years, and there are currently 2.9 million in need of urgent humanitarian assistance.
To assist in these efforts individuals and congregations are encouraged to give to The United Methodist Community on Relief (UMCOR) International Response and Recovery fund (Advance #982450 )
On the ground in this region, the Ukraine UMC has created a crisis committee that will oversee all the global support that is coming in through UMCOR’s Advance #14053A “Eurasia In Mission Together - Ukraine and Moldova.” The money channeled through this Advance fund will go to the Ukraine UMC church account and decisions on how this will be used will be considered by the crisis committee, which includes pastors as well as lay leaders. UMCOR also offers other opportunities for more specific giving to Ukrainian refugees in Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. You can designate giving by stating it is for "Ukrainian Refugee support" to the following Advance numbers:
- Hungary In Mission Together (Advance # 00175A)
- Poland In Mission Together (Advance # 00408A)
- Romania In Mission Together (Advance #00211A)
- Slovakia In Mission Together (Advance # 00236A).
- You can also use the UMCOR Advance #982540 which also supports humanitarian aid for refugees.
In addition to online giving, credit card contributions will also be accepted by phone. Call toll-free 888-252-6174 to make your gift. Designate your gift for one of the Advance numbers.
To send donations by mail, make your check payable to Advance GCFA and make a notation of the Advance number. Send your check to: Advance GCFA, P.O. Box 9068, New York, NY 10087-9068.
UMCOR is a United Methodist global relief agency, assisting those who suffer from natural or human-caused disasters and offering long-term hope, relief and recovery. 100 percent of donations made to UMCOR go to people in need. The agency’s administrative costs are covered by contributions made by congregations on UMCOR Sunday, March 22.
In addition, your mission share giving supports the work of the Baltimore-Washington Conference’s In Mission Together Eurasia Committee, which is working closely with United Methodists affected by this violence. (Read a commentary by the Rev. Charles Harrell, convener of this ministry in the BWC.) Conference staff are also actively networking with United Methodists in Eurasia and with ecumenical groups. (See a prayer by the Rev. Stacey Cole Wilson at St. Andrews Ukrainian Church in Silver Spring.)