UMVIM Team: Reflections on the Last Day

UMVIMTeam-2As we are winding down our week at UMCOR another UMCOR/VIM team from Susanville, California has come into this beautiful Episcopal center last night and worked with us today at the Depot. Bob was impressed again with how many tubes of toothpaste can be unboxed and bagged with many hands working. On Thursday he was the lone toothpaste volunteer while the rest of us sewed.

Rev. Brian held a communion service for both teams. This has been a day of reflecting and finishing up. We sewers finished up 30 baby gowns, 2 footie sleepers, 6 blankets and two sweaters. The sweaters were begun while we traveled and finished up here. We leave behind to be remembered by, an origami crane mobile made of tooth paste boxes and a beautiful quilt square banner made with the Christian symbol of fishes.

We have been remembering and appreciating FUMC of Portland’s involvement with UMCOR this past year. Both UMW and the Global Mission Committee and many individuals contributed money for materials. Tabitha Circle and friends managed to create an entire pallet of baby gowns and sweaters (Dora croqueted about 140 sweaters by herself). We assembled 82 complete layette kits and as a church we gave over $3,000 to One Great Hour of Sharing which funds UMCOR. We have sent two UMCOR/VIM teams.

The shipment we have worked on this week will go to Armenia. The need is still great in many parts of the world. UMCOR was originally begun by a Methodist Bishop in 1940 because he saw the tremendous need in Europe from a war in which we were not yet involved. 73 years later Methodist churches all over the United States put forth efforts like we did to keep this great “idea” flourishing. We feel quite passionate about our wonderful experience. We’ve tentatively picked a date in mid-September for next year’s team, and because we so want our youth to experience this and can’t get a date for them when school’s out before 2015, we’ve reserved a slot for a team of 10 people for the week of June 15, 2015.

As we get ready for our trip home, we are filled with a sense of fulfillment in being able to serve the global community, and look forward to our return next year.

-Kay Ward

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