December 12, 2013

Adventists Provide Aid in Midwest Tornado Aftermath

Seventh-day Adventists in Illinois and Indiana, two states hardest hit by massive tornado outbreaks on November 17, 2013, are cleaning up and helping their neighbors in the aftermath of the twisters that hit several communities. The storms cut a wide path and killed a total of eight people, media reports indicate.<strong>SORTING FOOD:</strong> Volunteers at an Adventist Community  Services warehouse near Washington, Illinois, sort food and other supplies for tornado victims.

Those reports say as many as 55 tornadoes had been confirmed for the November 17 outbreak, with a twister a half-mile wide having struck Washington, Illinois, in the central part of the state, carrying a force of EF4, indicating wind speeds between 166 to 200 mph, the second-highest rating for a tornado. According to those same reports, Illinois had never before seen an EF4 tornado in November, which is generally the end of the tornado season.

No Seventh-day Adventist churches were reported damaged by the storms, and while at least two church members in Peoria, Illinois, lost their homes (another member’s home sustained damage), there were no reports of serious injury among church members in the area.

According to initial reports, the Illinois Conference Adventist Community Services unit has gone to Washington, Illinois, where the greatest damage occurred. A disaster response team established a distribution warehouse in response to the tornado damage, in anticipation of relief supplies arriving via truck convoys.

In Indiana that conference’s Community Services
team has delivered meals ready to eat, clothing, and
toiletries to the Kokomo, Indiana, area. Adventist Community Services personnel helped manage a warehouse operation. n