I need to get back to the last of Bishop Robert Schnase’s Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations, “Extravagant Generosity.” We are seeing this today in the out-pouring of assistance to Haiti after its devastating earthquake. So many people are giving either financial, food or medical items or of their time as being part of the medical or relief teams on site.
Less than a month after the destruction occurred, the United Methodist Committee on Relief was on the ground distributing food and working with the Methodist Church of Haiti to assess potential volunteer needs. There is still much to be worked out before unskilled volunteers may be of assistance. Coordination is an important part of the relief efforts.
Even though relief coordinators are discouraging U.S. volunteers from entering the country now, there are many in the U.S. showing their generosity. Ten schools in Kentucky packed health kits for Haiti. Christian music group Point of Grace performed at back-to-back fundraising concerts at Brentwood UMC just outside of Nashville. These are important acts of generosity.
However, extravagant generosity will go beyond this single tragedy. It reaches into our very own lives, encouraging us to address the needs of people we see around us every day. How are you showing extravagant generosity, not just in assisting Haiti, but also in your own community?