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by John Ramsey Can a series of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes in the southeast US affect missionaries halfway around the world? If the timing is right, they certainly can! BIMI missionaries have a familiar routine. Each month supporters send money to the World Missions Center (WMC) in Harrison, Tennessee. The donations are processed throughout the month. At the end of each month, statements are prepared and checks are written and deposited into the missionary accounts. This means the missionaries can plan their budget and spending in an orderly fashion. The system is time-tested and has worked without fail for many years. April 27, 2011, provided a test like no other. A record setting day of storms and tornadoes devastated the southeast US. Eleven tornadoes touched down in Hamilton County, Tennessee, where the BIMI WMC is located. Power was disrupted from Wednesday through Saturday. Thursday, April 28, would have been the normal day for closing out accounts and printing missionary statements. A NACHA electronic deposit needed to be made to the bank to keep missionary checks around the world from bouncing. How could this be accomplished with no power and no prospect of power for several more days? The first step was to find a way to notify our missionaries that there was a problem. A few of the staff had power in their homes. Working through these, alerts were posted on www.bimi. org and Facebook. Emails were sent to Field Directors to forward on to missionaries. A large enough generator was located early in the afternoon. After solving several electrical issues involving the UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) system, power was available to run the basic computers. Candles and photo lamps were used to provide light. Input began around 4 pm. It was necessary to swap power when a printer or copier was needed. The Business Department staff worked through the evening and around midnight statements started printing. At this point it was possible to transmit the direct deposits by NACHA to the bank to be dispersed to the missionary accounts. We praise the Lord for the resourceful and determined staff who work together in the WMC. Oftentimes it is overlooked that there must be an extensive support system in place to keep missionaries on the job around the world. staff improvises to get the job done 21