Pastors of southern Indiana United Methodist churches thanked the annual conference for its involvement in relief and recovery efforts following the deadly March 2 tornadoes that traveled across the state. The Rev. LeKisha Reed, associate director of Mission and Advocacy, reported to date, Indiana United Methodists have given more than $600,000 toward disaster relief and recovery efforts.

The Rev. Jim Byerly, a member of the conference disaster team, reported that of the 71,000 volunteer-hours given to help residents in southern Indiana, 41,000 of those hours were done by United Methodists. Byerly reminded members that we are the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) when a disaster hits.

The Revs. Jill Kaetzel of the Otisco charge, Ron Russell of Pekin UMC, Larry Platt of Borden Pleasant View UMC, and Wilma Bone of Henryville each thanked the churches of the Indiana Conference for their support in assisting in disaster response, relief and now recovery.

Bone said to members, “We don’t always agree, but when disaster strikes, we bind together and we are a force to be reckoned with. I’m proud to be a United Methodist… Keep us in your prayers. Help put us back together again.”

Bishop Coyner ended the report with a prayer over the pastors and congregations affected by the March 2 disaster. For more information, visit