St. John's Group Email Update on efforts in Joplin, how you can help, and things NOT to do

I have just received this email from President Ray Mirly regarding efforts in Joplin, specifically Immanuel Lutheran Church and Martin Luther School.  Please note that the email says that we should not collect or attempt to take clothing to Joplin. 
We are still collecting things to bring down there and Pastor Ken Shamber and his wife, Naomi Johnson's mom and dad,  are hopefully going ot be able to bring it down on Friday. 

To view as a Webpage, click here
You are receiving this email because of your relationship with Missouri District LCMS. If you do not wish to receive any more emails, you can unsubscribe here

Missouri District LCMS


 TO:                    Missouri District Board of Directors and Praesidium

                              Missouri District Pastors/Congregations

                              Missouri District staff

                              Council of Presidents

FROM:               President Mirly


DATE:               May 25, 2011


 RE:                    Joplin Tornado



Psalm 46:10-11 (ESV)


"Be still, and know that I am God.

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth!"

The Lord of hosts is with us;

The God of Jacob is our fortress.



Rev. Gene Wyssmann and I were in Joplin yesterday to meet with Rev. Greg Mech, Jeremy Schamber, Principal of Martin Lutheran School, Jason Glaskey (DCE) and several lay leaders of Immanuel Lutheran Church. They want to thank all who have responded with prayers, assistance, and words of encouragement. The challenges that they face are beyond words, but their faith in Almighty God is very evident.


Communication by phone and other technology is at best intermittent. This has made the task of accounting for the whereabouts and well-being of Immanuel members very difficult. Pastor Mech, Immanuel's staff and various lay leaders have made every effort to personally contact every member within the path of the tornado. They believe that they have accounted for every member that lived within the path of the storm. They are not aware of the death of any of their members even though many of their homes were totally destroyed. They have not been able to contact all of the school families.


Fourteen members' homes or apartments were totally destroyed. Countless others sustained significant damage. The parsonage has major roof damage. The school building suffered roof damage, but temporary repairs have already been made. The church has no apparent damage, but is without electricity.


DCE Glaskey shared that the teenagers of the congregation, especially those that lost their homes, are experiencing significant emotional difficulties. Several have requested that he go with them and their family to the site of where their homes once stood to help them begin to deal with their loss.


Rev. William Doubek, pastor of First Lutheran Church, Neosho, has several members that sustained complete loss of their homes in Joplin. An eight year old girl and six year old boy from one of his families were killed by the tornado. The mother of these children is injured and hospitalized, as is her two year old child. Our prayers go out to this family.


As we were leaving the church, Red Cross staff was arriving to establish a command center at Immanuel. The challenge is that the church does not have large enough refrigerators and freezers to neither store food, nor proper space for other donations that are starting to arrive.


Rev. Glenn Merritt and Rev. Carlos Hernandez with Lutheran World Relief and Human Care will visit Joplin today. Mr. Jim Eckrich and a number of other associates from Lutheran Disaster Relief will also be in Joplin today. Both organizations are giving the following advice:


  • Keep everyone in your prayers.
  • Send financial contributions to the organization of your choice. See addresses below.
  • Do not drive to Joplin to assist unless you are a qualified first responder. You will not be permitted into the area of the storm damage. Once search and recovery efforts have been completed, clean-up volunteers will be requested.
  • Volunteers are being coordinated through United Way 211. Groups can register by calling 211 (landline) or (800) 427- 4626 (cell). Registration can also be done online at
  • Do not collect nor attempt to take clothing to Joplin.
  • The water utility hopes to have safe drinking water flowing through its system today. Bottled water is still needed.
  • Phone calls should not be placed to Immanuel Lutheran Church until further notice.
  • Volunteers of the congregation are attempting to keep the website updated. Please go to


I have requested Rev. Mech to send me a daily list of needs. Please check the Missouri District website for daily updates. One immediate need is the loan of John Deere Gators (or equivalent) to be used to move supplies through the disaster zone. The authorities will not permit delivery by car or truck. If you or a member of your congregation is willing to loan a Gator type vehicle, contact Karen Siegel, 314.317.4565. She will assist you with necessary delivery information.


Agencies providing assistance:


The Missouri District Disaster Fund

The Missouri District - LCMS

660 Mason Ridge Center Drive, Suite 100

St. Louis, MO 63141

LCMS Orphan Grain Train

(402) 649-3893 or (402) 649-3896      

Lutheran World Relief and Human Care

1333 S. Kirkwood Rd.

St. Louis, MO 63122

Lutheran Disaster Response

39330 Treasury Center

Chicago, IL 60694-9300

American Red Cross

P.O. Box 37243

Washington, DC 20013









"The Missouri District is to serve and encourage congregations to fulfill the Great Commission and to promote unity of the true faith."

This e-mail message, including any attachments, is intended for the sole use of the intended recipient or recipients to which it is addressed and may contain information that is privileged, confidential and exempt from disclosure under applicable law.
This message was sent to by

660 Mason Ridge Center Drive #100, St. Louis, MO, 63141

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.