The Annual Conference ended Saturday, June 13, 2020 and Billie K. Fidlin, the Director of Outreach & Justice read the following thank you from Mel Rodis from the Navajo Nation. At that point the Desert Southwest Conference of the United Methodist Church had received over $30,000 in donations for the Water for the Navajo Nation Mission Project 2020. The Navajo Water Project District raised over $63,000. Several more churches were still collecting, as was ours – Our finally tally to add to the total was $1,755. From the bottom of my heart Thank You, for digging deep – it means so much to help those who have so little.
I have sent a personal thank-you note to everyone who donated to this project – you are very special people. We are so blessed, we can go and turn the tap on and get a glass of clean water or wash our hands or take a shower or flush the toilet – just the basics of what we consider a normal life. And washing our hands and keeping the house clean, during the COVID-19 crisis has kept us, pretty much, safe, from becoming ill. When 30% of your population does NOT have running water, living situations are difficult at best.
Here is the Thank-You that we heard from Mel Rodis, the Attorney for the Navajo Nation, Department of Justice COVID-19 Command Center.
“Dear Members of the Desert Southwest Conference of United Methodist Church, On behalf of the Navajo Nation Donation Branch and the Nation, we want to express our sincere gratitude for the monetary donations that you have collected from congregants of your churches all across the Conference area. It is so moving to know that the United Methodist Church and its members are standing in solidarity with the Navajo People during this crisis. As you know, the Navajo Nation has the highest COVID-19 infection rate per capita of anywhere in the U.S. These are desperate times. Approximately 30% of the residents of the Navajo Nation do not have access to running water. This makes it very difficult for people to wash their hands and sanitize their homes to protect themselves and their families from the virus. Additionally, people need food and other basic necessities that they either cannot afford or cannot obtain at this time. Your generous donation will be used to provide water to our people, much needed as with other humanitarian aid to the Navajo People living on the reservation. We ask that you continue to keep the Navajo Nation and the Navajo People in your thoughts and prayers. Prayers are answered. We will get through these trying times together. Your support, prayers, and solidarity will help bring comfort and hope to many. Blessings to you, your families, and your congregations. Walk in beauty. Ahéhee’.