Mission, ministry in Nepal a grassroots effort

April 18, 2016
Story and photos by Charmaine Robledo
Director of Communications, Mountain Sky Area of The United Methodist Church

United Methodist missionary Katherine Parker knows first-hand the power of community when it comes to ministry and disaster response. As a survivor of the devastating earthquake that rocked Nepal on April 25, 2015, Parker said there were more than 9,000 lives lost and they experienced an average of 10 aftershocks daily following the initial quake. But as much as the international outpouring of support, Parker said it was "amazing what we can do as a church because of the grassroots connections."

Indeed, during her week-long visit through the Rocky Mountain Conference, Parker touched upon the many community programs she works with as part of the health team for United Mission to Nepal. During her April 8 presentation to the Conference Board of Global Ministries at the conference office, Parker emphasized the team's "intentional and thoughtful" efforts in community transformation. She listed a partnership through United Methodist Women on health response and trauma care for students. Access to maternal and child healthcare can be difficult in many areas, but Parker said local women with a "desire to serve" assist families, even when they have minimal education. Finally, Parker spoke about a Men as Partners program, which promotes dialogue around family planning.

"When we reach out to our neighbors, it's how we express our love of God," she said.

To view Parker's full biography and support her with a donation, click here. You can also follow Parker on Facebook and through her blog.