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Whitestone Life, April 1990
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Whitestone Life, April 1990

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Tornadoes--Hesston (Kan.)


Excerpt of Whitestone Mennonite Church newsletter


Whitestone Mennonite Church


Hesston Public Library




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Whitestone Mennonite Church.pdf

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Whitestone Mennonite Church, “Whitestone Life, April 1990,” Hesston Public Library, accessed July 25, 2021, https://hesston.digitalsckls.info/item/467.

April 1990
Following the March 13 tornado that ripped through Hesston, Whitestone was flooded with groceries, money for victims, and letters full of sympathy and love. I would like to share all the notes and letters that have been received through the mail the last two weeks. Hesston area residents have truly been in the prayers and thoughts of many people.
Friday, March 16, 1990
Dear People of Hesston. My name is Tieyce M. Saylor. I live in Newton, Kansas. I am 10 years old and in 5th grade. My mom and I decided to give food which is spaghetti & meatballs (2 cans), fruit (2 cans), and hot oatmeal that takes hot water. After that we are giving money for more supplies that you need. Some people in my class are bringing more food to help out. The time the tornado hit I was in Jazz. I'm also in the school band. I play the flute. Well, I have to go. Hope you like the stuff that I sent.
Love, Tieyce
Friday, March 16, 1990 Dear Friends at Whitestone,
What shocking news from Hesston. I'm so sorry for those of you who have lost your homes and businesses. It must be hard in many, many ways for the whole community. The papers and TV had a lot in. I did see Arlan Yoder and also Eli Bontragers & heard them speak. I am thinking often of you.
My love & prayers, Eunice Histand
We are members of the First Christian Church of Augusta. You have all been in our prayers this past week. May God bless you all and give you strength in the weeks to come. Our love and payers,
Virginia and Ralph Belt
March 16, 1990
Dear Friends of Whitestone Mennonite Church:
Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
We wish to express our sympathy to you over the tragic events of this past week's storm. We pray that the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion, and the God of all comfort will be with you this day.
We pledge to you our prayers and support during this time of hardship and recovery in your church and community. We encourage you to remain strong in the Lord because he indeed is faithful through all trials.
Because of our partnership in the gospel and our friendship over the miles we request that you advise us of the ways in which we can be of benefit to you in the future.
May the grace and peace of God be with you.
In Christ, Weldon Martens (Pastor) for the Pleasant Valley
Mennonite Church
March 16, 1990
Dear Whitestone Church Family,
By the time you read this you will have already spent many hours caring for each other following the devastation of the March 13 tornado. We are writing to let you know of our own thoughts and prayers for you during these difficult and life-changing times.
We have heard through various contacts of those who lost their homes completely; of those who have had their homes damaged; of those whose homes remain standing while their neighbors' house was devastated. We can only begin to imagine your individual losses and your collective trauma.
And yet we feel certain and believe without doubt in you as a church that through this experience, your tradition of responding in love to one another in the midst of crisis will once again come alive. From this experience will come new stories of mutual aid and service that will become part of your long tradition. No doubt, some of these stories are already being told even while new ones have yet to happen.
We say to those who have especially been affected by the tornado— your loss is our loss, your trauma is our trauma, your questions of "why?" are our questions. May you come to discover the grace and love of God within this experience, and may you take courage to believe, at this moment, in God's care.
Grace and Peace, David, Darlene, Rosanna, and Benjamin
Monday, March 19, 1990 Dear Ron,
During our worship yesterday, there was extended discussion with many people sharing the experiences that their relatives or acquaintances had. At that time it was decided to funnel most giving through MDS and similar agencies. Those who have friends or relatives will be giving directly to them.
I can tell you that the stories of sharing and assistance that were related were a witness to us all, and I believe considerable resources will be made available as a result of it. In addition, you are in our prayers and thoughts. We praise God that the townspeople were spared serious injury or death, but are aware of the psychological shock and fear that must be dealt with, and will continue to pray for that.
It doesn’t appear that ray schedule will allow me to get down to Hesston. I wish I could.
God’s healing and blessing on you all. In His love,
Bill Swartzendruber Wheaton, ILL
March 19, 1990 Levant, Kansas
To Whom It May Concern,
The enclosed check is to help the victims of the Hesston tornado disaster. Our board of Elders decided our entire Sunday morning offering would go to help wherever it is needed the most.
We are a small nondenominational church in Levant, Kansas in the extreme northwest corner and our prayers and hearts go out to each family who were hit so hard down there.
May God bless you at this difficult time.
Sincerely', LaVelle Palmgren (Missions Treasure)
Dear Ron,
Howard and I are deeply touched by the many losses in your congregation. We still feel those strong ties of family and we hurt, too, when you are hurting. Our love and prayers,
Howard and Martha Hershberger
March 21, 1990
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The tornado did extensive damage to your city and area. Years ago Wichita had a tornado in the area where we lived. It took the roof off of a building across the street and dumped part of it into the street across from our house and lifted and hit again in an area quite a way east and north of our homes. We are all in God's care.
May God help you in repairing the damage. Help you to rebuild is a better expression. Love and Prayers,
John H. Gaeddert Wichita
March 22, 1990
Dear Gemeinschaft Class,
Diane and I were going to Rochester the morning of the 14th, when we heard on the radio that Hesston, Kansas was hit with the bad weather.
We continue to get the Hesston Record, and Whitestone Bulletin, so that we can keep up on Hesston area news.
It is times like theses that will pull the class together, and we want you to know that we, outside the class, are pulling for you also.
Sunday morning, at our church, we had special prayer for the tornado victims, and especially for those in your class.
Love and prayers,
Ben and Diane Nolt and family
A Junior High Social Studies teacher, and his wife, dropped off two boxes of food from the students at the school. They also left a copy of the News Release they had studied during Social Studies. The students had signed their names on the back and the following message was written below the Release:
Dear Residents of Hesston,
We talked about your situation in my social studies classes on Wednesday, March 14. I asked students and staff for their contributions to your relief effort and in spite of very brief notice, did collect some food and clothing. My wife and I had already planned to drive to Texas, and since Hesston was on 1-135, I decided to contribute what we could.
Perhaps someone in Hesston can write and describe their experiences for us. We wish you all well. We're thinking of you!
Greg and Linda Nelson Pound Junior High School 4740 South 45th St.
Lincoln, NE 68516
letters touched me. I wanted to share them with all of the Whitestone family.
—Donna Koehn
Each of these notes and

Original Format

Church newsletter