NEW!  George Menden's Photographs are included below!

 

October 1 - 3, 2004

Hurricane Jeanne Relief Effort to Orlando, Fl Region

 

Return to the Church and Friends Page

At the request of Church leaders, over 2600 members of the Church from Georgia miraculously organized themselves into an army of workers to help the victims of Hurricane Jeanne that hit the Florida coast the weekend of September 25 and 26.  Jeanne was the third hurricane to impact this area in the last six weeks.  Below are some photographs taken of the members of the Roswell Georgia Stake who pulled together 10 teams with almost 90 people.  

Below the photographs are letters of appreciation that we've received from the people who witnessed this army in action.  For those of you not familiar with just how quick a group of Mormons can organize, I've included the correspondence from the Roswell Ward, one of the 10 teams, that was dispatched with urgency.  You'll be amazed, as was I, at how quickly and efficiently an army was assembled and dispatched.   

If any of you have additional photographs that you would like to include below, please email them to me at tommck01@comcast.net and I'll include them below.

Thanks - Tom McKinney


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This link to Hurricane Ivan Destruction will take you to photographs of the tremendous damage caused by Hurricane Ivan in Pensacola, Florida.  In that location, members of the Church from other states in the South responded accordingly.  I was fortunate to be able to help clear some trees from that location.

 


Hurricane Humor 


 

Letters of Appreciation

  From A Family That Received Help From Members of Our Group

 

Date: Monday, 10/4/2004   2:45 PM

From: Dean Nielsen

Subject: Letter from Family in Orlando

 

I just received this from a family that we helped on Saturday. For those of you that were there you will remember that Janis and Greg bought us all the ice cream and sodas. Besides providing temporal relief to these good people, it seems clear that we also accomplished our objectives to demonstrate Christ-like love and to provide others with a better understanding of our church.

 

As I don't have email addresses for everyone that was there, please pass this along.

Dean Nielsen

----- Forwarded by Dean Nielson/US/NA/TCCC on 10/04/2004 02:33 PM -----

"Janis Garren" <Janis@fdn.com>
10/04/2004 01:22 PM

To Dean Nielson/US/NA/TCCC@TCCC

 

Subject :Gratitude and Friendship

Dean,

 

I pray that all of you made it home safely. I just wanted to thank you, again, for coming to our home and our neighbors homes on Saturday. Thank you is just not enough to say. You made such a tremendous difference in our attitude towards life and God lately. It was a pleasure to meet each and every one of you. I have told everyone I have come in contact with (and many people I have called) what wonderful human beings you are. I have also been praising JDL. I hope that we might keep in touch with all of you and also hope that if there is something either of us can do for any of you, you will contact us.

 

Sincerely,

Janis & Greg Garren
1620 Lisa Lane
Kissimmee, FL 34744
(407) 944-1003

 

 From A Seminary Teacher 

Writing An Open Letter to Seminary Teachers


To:       Teachldsseminary@ldsseminaryfiles.com
Subject: [Teachldsseminary] Hurricane Jeanne Help This Weekend in Florida - Comparison to History
Date: Mon, 4 Oct 2004 14:40:07 EDT


We had an interesting experience over the weekend here in Florida that correlates to an event in Church history that I thought you might find interesting.


As everyone is aware, parts of our state (including some parts of my stake) have been devastated by storms during the past several weeks. The stakes in Florida, as well as many stakes in surrounding states, have been sending teams of priesthood holders and many sisters out to work with the EOC to provide relief...repairing homes, cutting down trees, helping however and wherever they are needed. The Church has also provided a lot of disaster relief supplies.


This weekend was General Conference. However, instead of attending, our church teams (about 2000 strong in my area) were out both Saturday and Sunday, at the request of the Brethren. It was on the news, in the papers, etc. People were so grateful for the help. EOC directors said that without the help of the Church members, only a small fraction of the the relief would have been provided. (They were wearing special tee shirts, which made them very noticeable.)

Anyway, the part that I found interesting, was that the leaders of the Church would choose to have members out providing relief, rather than attending General Conference. Then I remembered the time in Church history when the handcart company was stranded and starving. It was also conference time. But when Brigham Young heard about the plight of the people, he sent the members home to gather supplies and sent rescue teams to help them. I'm so grateful to belong to a church that puts people before anything else.

 

Here is part of the actual quote from Brigham Young on that eventful Conference day: “I shall call upon the Bishops this day. I shall not wait until tomorrow, nor until next day, for 60 good mule teams and 12 or 15 wagons. . . “I will tell you that all your faith, religion, and profession of religion, will never save one soul of you in the celestial kingdom of our God, unless you carry out just such principles as I am now teaching you. Go and bring in those people now on the Plains.”


It's been such a blessing to see the gospel in action. When you talk to your students about tithing and donations, let them know that the humanitarian aid helps people in the USA, as well as in other parts of the world...and next time it may be their area that needs it!


The Church is sooooo true!

Sandy in Titusville, FL

From President Woolf

Sent: Monday, October 04, 2004 10:56 PM
Subject: Florida Relief

Dear Bishops,

I would like to thank you for the gracious support your Ward provided in supplying able souls to help in going to Florida and provide Hurricane relief. For me, and I sense for those in your Wards I visited with, it was a very worthwhile effort. It is so wonderful to be part of the church where so many are willing to drop everything at a moment's notice and go and help another. The joy we received in helping those in need was precious. I almost felt like a mini-Zion's camp as we went off to help those in Florida.

We provided 10 teams consisting of about 90 people in total. Each team seemed so happy to serve and worked hard. We touched a lot of lives as we served them, prayed with them, shared our testimony and left pass-along cards. We tarped a lot of roofs, cut down a lot of trees, and drank plenty of water. Out Sisters and youth who came along were troopers. The local members in the Kissimmee area felt such a powerful support from the 360 saints who were there from the Atlanta North Mission. There were over 2600 members in Florida last weekend serving in various areas. I was impressed with the cheerfulness of all those who were involved.

Please extend our thanks as a Stake Presidency to all of your members. We appreciate those who would have liked to go but were not able to because of
other commitments. We know there hearts and prayers are drawn out always to those in need.

You should receive a note from a couple we served in Florida following this email.

With many thanks and our love,

Roswell, GA Stake Presidency

 

 

History of just how quickly all of this came together - 

The true miracle of the Church's organization.

 Email #1

Sent: Tue 9/28/2004 9:56 AM

From: Rod & Kathy Edelman

To:   Roswell Ward

Subject: ROSWELL WARD MEMBERS ASKED TO AID IN HURRICANE RELIEF EFFORT IN FLORIDA

 

PLEASE RESPOND TO THIS E-MAIL BY 6PM TONIGHT IF YOU ARE ABLE TO HELP. PLEASE CONTACT ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:

  • BISHOP WINTERTON – 770-667-0722

  • BOB BERTAGNA – 770-552-8562

  • SCOTT SHIELDS – 678-624-1407

 

PLEASE PROVIDE YOUR HOME PHONE #, E-MAIL ADDRESS, AND CELL PHONE #.

 

IF FOR SOME REASON YOU ARE UNABLE TO CONTACT ONE OF THESE BRETHREN, PLEASE RESPOND TO THIS E-MAIL AND I WILL FORWARD YOUR RESPONSE TO BISHOP WINTERTON.

 

Greetings Ward Family! We have been asked to provide volunteers to go to Florida to aid in the hurricane relief efforts THIS WEEKEND. The purpose of this e-mail is to give you a general idea of what is being asked. Detailed instructions will be given to those who volunteer.

 

The stakes in our region have been asked to provide a total of 200 volunteers to go to northern part of the affected area to assist in what appears now to be primarily debris removal and roofing repairs. That works out to about 40-50 people from each Stake. A total of 2000 volunteers from our church are expected to be in the area this weekend. No age limits were given and as far as anyone knows the request includes Sisters.

 

Volunteers will need to bring the following items:

  • One chain saw for each team of 10

  • Good work gloves for all workers

  • Food & water

  • Bedding and possibly tents

  • Hammers and other hand tools

 

Local church buildings will be open for people to stay overnight in, but they are not sure they will be able to hold all of the volunteers.

 

Gasoline could still be a problem in the affected area. You will need to come into the area with a full tank of gas and also gas for your chain saws. The following travel suggestion has been made: “Those outside of a 120 mile radius of Greater Orlando may consider coming down, at least part way, Friday night. We will identify staging areas at Church buildings near I-95, I-4 or the Florida Turnpike suitable for camping, sleeping either outside of inside. (Details to be worked out) This will leave you no more than a one hour drive to the assigned areas on Saturday morning. Each group must come self-contained with food, water, etc. for 2 days, plus Friday night. You should also plan on topping off you gas tanks before getting within 60 miles of your staging destination Friday night, as gas supplies in the affected areas are non-existent due to no power or no gas, or both.”

 

This opportunity for service will provide great blessings.

 

- Kathy

 Email # 2

Sent: Thu 9/30/2004 1:06 PM

From: Rod & Kathy Edelman

To:   Roswell Ward

Subject: Florida Trip: Staging Area: Next to Orlando Temple

Greetings Ward Family!

Thank you to all those who have volunteered to make the trip to Florida this weekend to aid in the relief efforts there.

I have sent this e-mail out, including the correspondence between President Woolf and Bishop Broome, to all of our Ward Family members because I didn't want to take a chance on missing any of the volunteers.

The attachments to this e-mail include a permit allowing volunteers to enter the area as well as instructions and necessary forms.

PLEASE NOTE: DONATIONS OF TENTS, SLEEPING BAGS, GENERATORS, CHAIN SAWS, AND HAND TOOLS ARE STILL BEING ACCEPTED. PLEASE CONTACT BISHOP WINTERTON, BROTHER BERTAGNA, OR BROTHER SHIELDS DIRECTLY...OR YOU MAY REPLY TO THIS E-MAIL AND I WILL PASS YOUR RESPONSE ALONG TO BISHOP WINTERTON. I MONITOR THIS E-MAIL ACCOUNT FREQUENTLY.

THANK YOU! - Kathy

Please see the attachments and information below. There should be power, stores and restaurants in the staging area. Directions to the Stake Center will be coming tomorrow. Everyone will need to bring sleeping bags, mattresses, and possibly will need tents.

Keep coordinating your crews, equipment and transportation. We have about 65 people so far without counting PM and WB. That is an outstanding effort.

We appreciate the financial sacrifice that those are making to drive to Florida. This will be a great opportunity to see the Army of God in action. So great to be a part of it. I am looking forward to serve along with your members there in Florida.

Many thanks,

President Woolf

From: "Barry D. Broome, JD, CLU, ChFC, CSA" 

Subject: Florida Trip
Date: Wed, 29 Sep 2004 19:33:58 -0700 (PDT)

Brethren:

The Atlanta North Welfare Region will stage in Orlando, Florida at the Orlando South Stake Building. This building is next to the Orlando Temple. This will be Friday night. The Saturday night will probable be in another area or building.

I am attaching some forms for your use.

More information will be forthcoming.

BB

Barry D. Broome, JD, CLU, ChFC

 

 

Email # 3

From: George D. Menden


Sent: Thursday, September 30, 2004 6:20 PM


To:   Lynn Winterton; Scott Shields; Kevin Laughlin; Lance Hale; Andrew Kelly; Larry Asay; Annie Acree; Kathy Edelman; Carl Artinger; Roger Nelson; Daniel Bahr; Shippen Bushell; Ramon stewart; Pete & Debi Rouse; Fred Woolf; George D. Menden; Tom McKinney; Rod & Kathy Edelman

 

Cc:   Mike Jensen; Bob Bertagna; Scott Shields; Donn Sant


Subject:     Florida Trip Conference Call

 

To All Hardy Workers:

 

We will have a very important coordination telephone call tonight at 10:45 pm for our trip to Florida tomorrow - I need the drivers who will be attending to participate on the call. The call will occur at 10:45 pm (after the Presidential debate). Here is the call-in information:

 

Call: 888/240-3223
Participant Number: 303281#

NOTE TO MIKE, SCOTT AND BOB: I will be in meetings until 9:30 tonight - PLEASE call everyone in your quorums and make sure 1 driver (or another designee) participates in the call. I will not have time to make the call invitations, so I will rely on you to help me get people on the call. We will discuss:

- Organization of car pools;
- Time of departure;
- Coordination in Orlando;
- "Team Organization" and Team Leader assignments;
- What to bring (tools/food); and
- For those interested in staying in a hotel, what accommodations are possible (the Stake Center will also be available for sleeping bags/tents).

This will be our only coordination call, and there are about 24 from our Ward who will be making the trip. I will not have time to coordinate this information individually, so PLEASE make sure our entire group is represented on the call.

 

Many thanks.

George (Menden)

-----Original Message-----
From: Lynn Winterton
Sent: Thursday, September 30, 2004 5:52 PM
To: George D. Menden
Cc: Mike Jensen; Bob Bertagna; Scott Shields
Subject: Florida Trip

 

All:

 

George Menden is arranging a conference call tonight. Please get him all information on who is going tomorrow. He probably needs it via email.
Please copy myself.

Thanks
Lynn