Thursday, June 27
The Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley
On April 27, 2011, more than 60 tornadoes struck the state of Alabama, many of them within the bounds of the Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley, including the Birmingham and Tuscaloosa areas.
Immediately after the tornadoes passed, people from all denominations, faith traditions, political convictions, and socioeconomic groups banded together to care for the wounded and the grieving, to plan for a better future, and to get to work rebuilding homes, communities, and lives.
With the help of generous donations from people all over the country and remarkable support from Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, the Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley has been able to focus on the long-term recovery efforts in Alabama. The presbytery hosts reconstruction volunteers at two different sites, one at First Presbyterian Church of Tuscaloosa, and the other at First United Presbyterian Church of Forestdale, in the greater Birmingham area.
Volunteer groups from churches across the country have come to stay at these host sites while they work on homes in tornado-affected neighborhoods, and the presbytery’s congregations have been delighted to welcome them.
While the April tornadoes were a devastating event, the response to the tornadoes has been a faith-strengthening and life-affirming blessing. Everyone in the presbytery is grateful for God’s help and for the outpouring of love and support from around the country.
The Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley includes 85 congregations and their 12,174 members. Stillman College and The Presbyterian Home for Children are within presbytery boundaries, as is the Living River Camp and Conference Center, which is currently being developed.
Let us join in prayer for:
Rev. James R. Ephraim Jr., member, PMA Board
Elder Richard Turpen, at-large member, PMA Board
Rev. Dr. M. Rebecca Burton, executive presbyter
Rev. Robert Hay, associate executive for nurture
Rev. Dan Stephens, associate executive for missional development
Elder Beverly Dodson, stated clerk
Linda Burrowes, office manager
Tammy Strickland, bookkeeper and program assistant
Let us pray
Faithful God, even amid tragedy and suffering, you abide with your people. As you continue to heal our wounds and strengthen our spirits, draw us closer to you and closer to one another, so that all your people may be one. Amen.