Philippine sign

One year ago this week, this happened –

ST. LOUIS, November 14, 2013—A team from The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) plans to depart for the Philippines Friday, Nov. 15, to provide immediate relief and begin planning for the long-term recovery in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan.

The objectives of the trip are to begin working in collaboration with members of the Lutheran Church in the Philippines (LCP), an LCMS partner church, and LCMS staff located in the region, as well as to get a firsthand accounting from the field of the needs.

The LCMS eight-member team will include the Rev. Glenn Merritt, director, LCMS Disaster Response; the Rev. Ross Johnson, co-director, LCMS Disaster Response; the Rev. Michael Meyer, manager, LCMS Disaster Response; the Rev. Steven Schave, associate executive director, LCMS Office of International Mission; Sean Harlow, LCMS missionary to the Philippines and Taiwan; Deaconess Pamela Nielsen, associate executive director, LCMS Communications; Rick Steenbock, an LCMS missionary communications specialist based in Germany; and Erik Lunsford, associate editor of Stakeholder Information, LCMS Communications.

During a Nov. 13 sending service at the LCMS International Center in St. Louis, Mo., LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison led a prayer for safe travels for the team.

“Through [the team] may the suffering ones experience Your tender love and see not only hope for this present crisis but the joy of Your forgiveness in Christ Jesus,” Harrison said.

Since then about $1 million has been sent to help the Philippines recover from the tremendous impact of the typhoon.  President Kay is in the Philippines visiting the Seminary and the Deaconess Training Center.  She will also visit with the teams that continue with disaster relief programs.