Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

Boise City church opens doors in blizzard


With roads closed and motels full, travelers found refuge at St. Paul's UMC, Boise City, OK. (Dec. 19)

George Lupton wades out for snow duty. He is pastor of St. Paul's UMC, Boise City, OK.

A family gathers in the basement of St. Paul's UMC, Boise City, OK, for shelter during a severe snowstorm Dec. 19.

St. Paul's UMC member Nathan Johnson clears the parsonage driveway in Boise City, OK.

Two women find a warm welcome and warm blankets for rest inside St. Paul's UMC, Boise City, during a blizzard in the Oklahoma Panhandle on Dec. 19.

This Enid family and their dogs found shelter at Boise City-St. Paul's UMC during a blizzard Dec. 19 in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

BOISE CITY—Extreme cold. Whirling winds. Snowfall totaling 12 to 16 inches.

Travelers shivering in the white-out conditions Dec. 19 in the Oklahoma Panhandle found a warm hearth at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church.

The Cimarron County Sheriff’s Department and the Red Cross contacted Pastor George Lupton, and St. Paul’s opened its doors to about 60 stranded travelers and some pets.

All the motels in Boise City were full, and all the highways were closed, Rev. Lupton said. “St. Paul’s is set up for just such an emergency. We opened up the basement and provided blankets, food, and water and coffee to the stranded motorists.”

The guests were from as far away as Ohio, Montana, California, and Texas.

Lupton appreciated the response of the church family. “We made many new friends,” he added. “Several of the travelers left a contribution to St. Paul’s UMC, for the next group of travelers who might find themselves in a situation like this.

“I saw the love of Jesus Christ reaching out to our brothers and sisters in need. We were glad we could share.”


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