Lisa Rothenberger
World Relief Officer
June 2017

You are here!  

It is a common, perhaps daily, experience for many of us - as we live in our technology-driven age - to have a pin drop on a GPS map, marking a current location or indicating a destination, and orienting us in space. These map pins represent where we are now and where we hope to go.  

The scriptures for this year's special One Great Hour of Sharing offering provide a similar point of reference, and an orientation for our lives: God is near; love one another in truth and action; feed those who are hungry; clothe those who are naked; and welcome those who are strangers. This year's scriptural texts also help us position ourselves in relation to God, and to one another, by reminding us of our call to be here for one another, and to love one another just as God has loved us. Our destination, where our map pin sits, is near to the heart of God, and is alongside our neighbors who are suffering.

This year our offering theme is "You are here." 

By this simple statement, we glorify God's faithful presence, affirm that Christ is uniquely present in those whom we serve, and celebrate how you are here for your neighbors in their times of need. Because of your generosity and sharing, One Great Hour of Sharing is present for people near and far in moments of crisis or calm. We have been present for them, so you also have been present.

  • You are here -  in Nicaragua, where women are given the training and tools to cultivate home gardens in order to provide nutritious food for their families.
  • You are here - in West Virginia, where communities are rebuilding after floods have claimed lives and livelihoods.
  • You are here - in Lebanon, Mexico, the United States, and elsewhere around the world, where refugees are receiving food, water, and medicine with dignity, as our partners offer aid and companionship.

Often, we receive notes from those who have experienced disasters, expressing thanks because "One Great Hour of Sharing was here." In times of loss or struggle, after a fire or flood, and when communities struggle to overcome the chronic absence of water, food or economic opportunity, the church is present through the work of One Great Hour of Sharing.

Through your gifts, You are here!