December 16, 2020
By: 
The Rev. Canon Heather L. Melton, Staff Officer for the United Thank Offering

2020 was a year like no other. When we entered the first stay-at-home order here in New Mexico, I took some time to dig through the UTO historical materials in my office to try and see what the women did during the 1918 influenza epidemic. It turns out that most of the work women did went unacknowledged in the written materials I had, but it definitely appeared in the grant list or as asides to other topics (like UTO and the Red Cross). This year, the Board and staff made the decision that when future generations of UTO leaders look back to 2020, they will be able to see how we – the practitioners of gratitude – were at work in the world in the midst of this global crisis. Many of you have submitted photos or stories of what you are doing, and we now have UTO Grants to tell the story as well. But we want to make sure we tell the story as fully as we can, and we need your help to do that. If you did anything interesting related to gratitude and the pandemic (drive-up Ingatherings, virtual Ingatherings, cool outreach, interesting things for the holidays, and so forth), we want you to share it with us. I am compiling stories and pictures for a section of the UTO Annual Report, and I would love to be able to feature you and your community. Please send any 2020 updates to me by February 1, 2021 to include in the annual report. Not sure your thing is cool enough or your church big enough? Don’t worry, it is and we want to share your story with others and preserve it for future generations. Please email all photos and text to hmelton@episcopalchurch.org, as well as any questions you might have.

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