Your Donations Making a Difference in the Lives of Widower and Family Who Lost Wife, Mother in Fire
LCC staff member Deaconess Dianna Bonfield, accompanied by Deaconess Intern Marissa Arndt, had the honor of representing all the LCC donors who reached out to assist St. Matthew, Chicago. Because of your help, they were able to share the mercy, compassion, presence and proclamation of Jesus Christ to the family of Tony Valdivia and family after a fire destroyed their home and claimed the life of their beloved wife and mother, Korissa.
To read the original story, CLICK HERE
After receiving the check on behalf of St. Matthew, Church Pastor Loza asked Dianna to address the congregation about the work of LCC.
Tony thanked St. Matthew and all those from LCC who have helped and encouraged him. He shared with everyone that it had been two weeks since 3 yr. old Kiara was released from the hospital. This Thursday, 6 yr. old Jerry will be released from the hospital as well.
Through this whole ordeal, people tell Tony to find strength in his children. Tony witnesses that, while his focus is on his children, he draws his strength from God and because Jesus died for us, he knows Korissa is in heaven, and that he and the children will see her again. That is his strength and hope to go on.
This small family has a long road ahead. All the medical bills have not even started coming in yet for Tony or the children for the many months they were in the burn unit and for all the surgeries. Both of the children will have to wear compression burn suits for some time as their skin graph, muscles and tendons heal. As their young bodies grow they will need new compression suits which are very expensive. Jerry had severe facial burns which will require him to wear a facial compression burn mask that is over $600 each time that is replaced. The burn shirt and leotard each are several times more expensive.
Please keep Tony and the children in your prayers. The Monday following Jerry’s release from the hospital will be a particularly difficult time as it is Korissa’s birthday and she will not be with them.
The California Valley Fire raged on Saturday, September 12 in Lake County California destroying the town of Middletown and others. It forced the evacuation of over 23,000 individuals. Almost 1,000 homes have been lost and 77,000 acres of land burned.
On Sunday September 13, Comfort Dog Aaron and the team from St. John Lutheran in Napa California began serving the evacuees at the Napa Valley Fairgrounds in Napa, California. St. John is still serving the community of Napa from the earthquake just one year ago.
Within 48 hours of seeing the magnitude of people displaced, St. John extended an invitation for more Comfort Dogs to assist the mission.
By midweek, Aaron Comfort Dog, LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Luther, Ruthie, Hannah, and LCC K-9 Comfort Dog-in-Training Jacob were giving comfort and prayer to the hundreds that camped in the 90-degree heat of the California sun.
One observer noted:
As I stood watching those being touched by your angels a little girl was walking by with two other children. All three children were very young, yet their expressions gave clear evidence they carried the weight of the world on their little shoulders.
I was blessed to see a total transformation with the little girl. As soon as she saw your angels her entire face lit up like the sun. What a precious gift of love you are giving to those who are so desperately in need.
There is no other being this side of heaven that can provide a perfect love like our four legged angels. Michelle
As the week progressed the team also had a moment to share God’s love and comfort with first responders at the CAL FIRE Command Center who have been working tirelessly since July fighting major fires. They have been seeing little of their families and with little or no time off. At one end of the command center, fire calls were being taken for the deployment of equipment and 10,000 firefighters. On the other end, over 2,000 calls a day were being taken from residents. On Saturday September 12, the calls were harrowing as the pleas for help to find a route out of the valley were coming in by the minute.
Firefighter Whitney described her visit with Luther:
My sweet moment with Luther this morning! He was such a blessing at the perfect time! THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. The CAL FIRE LNU Emergency command center thanks you as well
On Sunday after early worship at St. John, the team was invited to visit the “R” Ranch near Lake Berryessa California. 150 people have been staying there with their children, horses, and other livestock since the evacuation. Terri, one of the owners of the ranch, had helped coordinate the intake of humans and animals and, along with countless volunteers, provided a safe and comfortable place for everyone. The adults and children all enjoyed their time with the dogs.
The story does not end here as the team from St. John and LCC plan for continuing ministry to those effected. Please continue to lift them up in your prayers.
The LCC K-9 Comfort Dog ministry never charges those we serve but relies on donations to cover expenses.
LCC President Tim Hetzner Speaks and Teaches at Stade’s Farm and Market
This past Sunday morning, LCC President Tim Hetzner spoke at Stade’s Farm’s “Fields of Grace” worship service in McHenry, Illinois. He was joined by numerous K-9 Comfort Dog and Kare-9 Military Ministry Dog teams. “Fields of Grace” is an outdoor worship experience used as a community outreach tool for McHenry and surrounding towns. The occasion was made more special with the first public appearance of Jonah Comfort Dog (LCC Dog in Training). Jonah will soon be traveling with Tim, following in the paw-steps of K-9 Comfort Dog Howe. We are thankful to Stade’s Farm and Fields of Grace for the opportunity to share in fellowship and worship on such a beautiful Sunday morning.
Spirit of Life Chorus Presents Concert Benefitting Lutheran Church Charities on October 25
The SPIRIT OF LIFE CHORUS is graciously presenting a concert for Lutheran Church Charities at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Elgin, IL (195 Nesler Rd.). It will be on October 25 at 4:30pm.
SPIRIT OF LIFE CHORUS is an ecumenical Christian concert chorus performing in church sanctuaries and auditoriums throughout the northern Illinois area. Formed in the fall of 1989 with 17 charter members, today, SPIRIT has grown to over 75 singers and musicians. Their solid, musical reputation of dynamic concerts with strong emotional appeal is performed from the heart of each member. “SPIRIT” style music is presented with a joyous dedication to bringing the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ to all who listen.
LCC's unique pass-through "Dollar-In, Dollar-Out" program guarantees that 100% of your donation to a specific need goes to that need. LCC does not take out a percentage of your donation to cover administrative costs.