100% of Your Donations Continue to Support Ukrainians in Need
The humanitarian needs in Ukraine continue to grow larger and larger. Working through LCC staff member for Ukraine relief Rev. Larry Myers, the pastors and laity of the Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches in Ukraine (SELCU) continue to put forth outstanding efforts in proclaiming the truth of the Gospel through Word and action.
Two weeks ago, the five SELCU pastors, through whom Lutheran Church Charities has been working in Ukraine, traveled to the city of Lviv to spend several days with their spouses. The women traveled from the German towns of Marsberg and Homberg, where they have been residing as refugees together with their children. The children remained in Germany.
LCC has been sending your generous donations to Lutheran High School of Greater New Orleans to support its recovery from the devastating damage caused by Hurricane Ida in August 2021. We have received the following update from Lutheran High School Board member Sandy Walton:
It has been nine months since Hurricane Ida devastated our school. We managed to put a temporary roof on one of our buildings and opened five classrooms to welcome our students back in October. It was a joyous day.
We were able to put air conditioning units and heating units in the five classrooms. We fought leaks all year long, and when it rained, it continued to infiltrate many of the rooms.
Our insurance has paid us enough to put the new roof on two of our buildings (construction should begin next week), remove the mold and mitigate the newly discovered asbestos. We have been dealing with FEMA for nine months but with no success. We have to move forward without counting on anything from FEMA. Our future depends on God, donations, and grants. We have accepted the fact that we will have to remain in the five classrooms for another school year.
Now the good news. We made sure that our kiddos had a great year with our very limited resources. We offered a few sports; took the students to off-campus sites for enrichment, as well as community service; had a prom for the seniors; never missed chapel, and graduated some great kids.
WE ARE VERY SPECIAL IN OUR COMMUNITY. We provide a safe, Christian experience for our students. There is nothing that compares to us in the entire New Orleans area.
Please continue to pray for us. Lutheran High School is God’s school. We have been knocked down, but we are slowly getting to our “feet."
We welcome any donations.
Continuing in His service,
On Saturday, July 2, LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dogs and their veteran handlers and LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and their teams had the honor to serve and bring comfort to those that attended the funeral of Corporal Nathan Carlson, United States Marine. Corporal Nathan Carlson, a 21-year-old from Machesney Park, Illinois, was killed during a military training exercise on June 8. The Osprey aircraft crew chief died with four other Marines when the hybrid airplane and helicopter crashed in the California desert near the Arizona border:
Capt. Nicholas P. Losapio, 31, of Rockingham, New Hampshire
Cpl. Seth D. Rasmuson, 21, of Johnson, Wyoming
Lance Cpl. Evan A. Strickland, 19, of Valencia, New Mexico
Capt. John J. Sax, 33, of Placer, California
Nathan Carlson’s dream to become a Marine serving the United States of America, just like his father, became true in August 2019. In April 2021, he was deployed to Al Jaber Air Base in Kuwait, followed by a time at Prince Sultan Air Base in Saudi Arabia. In his young career, Corporal Nathan Carlson earned the National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon. Nathan Carlson excelled in The Corps and was recently promoted to crew chief.
Corporal Nathan Carlson was known by his family and friends as a positive and loving person who would make sure his friends had what they needed.
Four purple Hearts of Mercy & Compassion (HMC) with the United States Marine emblem and a cross were at the funeral for friends, family, and fellow marines to sign as they remembered and said goodbye to Corporal Nathan Carlson. Nathan’s parents, two sisters, and his wife each received one of the HMCs.
As we celebrate Independence Day, we are reminded of the brave men and women who have served, fought, and stood guard to protect our freedoms and continue to do so today. For Nathan Carlson, United States Marine, our heart breaks for his family, friends, and fellow marines. We ask for your healing arms to surround Nathan’s family and friends with your peace, rest, and strength in each hour of their grief.
The following LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and their handlers were present at Corporal Nathan Carlson's funeral:
LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dogs:
Britta (LCC Squad) with veteran handler Dale Sasse
Butch (LCC Squad) with veteran handler Keith Stanton
Flex (LCC Squad) with veteran handler Fred Vanstrom
Kye (Immanuel - Belvidere, Illinois) with veteran handler Jay Gettings
Levi (Immanuel - East Dundee, Illinois) with veteran handler Steve Harrison
Mary (St. Paul's Lutheran - Janesville, Wisconsin) with veteran handler Tom Moore
Nigel (LCC Staff) with veteran handler Jim Morrison
Samson (Zion - Marengo, Illinois) with veteran handlerJeff Schulman
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs:
Bekah (Immanuel - Belvidere, Illinois)
Charity (Brookfield - Brookfield, Wisconsin)
Julia (King of Glory - Elgin, Illinois)
Sage (Concordia University Wisconsin - Mequon, Wisconsin)
Tobias (Lord of Glory - Grayslake, Illinois)
On Monday, June 27, the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs attended the American Society of Safety Professionals Conference at McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois. LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Myra (St. Andrews - Park Ridge, Illinois), along with LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dogs Brutus (LCC Squad) and Nigel (LCC Staff), greeted the safety professionals as they spent an evening meeting one another.
The conference had approximately 5,000 attendees, so the Comfort Dogs were kept busy meeting many of them. As usual, the Comfort Dogs brought some stress relief and love to those they met.
On Thursday, June 30th, the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs were invited to spend time with children attending Camp Reunite in Campbellsport, Wisconsin. Camp Reunite is a week-long summer camp for children who have a parent incarcerated within the Wisconsin prison system. This year approximately 50 children attended the camp.
It's a camp like any other with fun activities all week long, but they also focus on the mental health of the child, offering ways to cope with the loss of a parent to the prison system. During the time the children are at Camp Reunite and in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Corrections, they have a chance to reunite with their parent at the correctional facility, to participate in camp games and activities, to share a meal together and have meaningful and special one-on-one time together.
Once the children have concluded the visit with their beloved parent, the bus trip back to camp can bring up many feelings. LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Charity (Brookfield Lutheran - Brookfield, Wisconsin) and LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Rhoda (Prince of Peace - Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin) were present to greet the children as they arrived back at camp.
Some were tearful, and some wailed at having to say goodbye to their parent; some kept in their feelings and remained silent. The LCC K9 Comfort Dogs met these kids and staff with a calm, sweet demeanor as they came over the hill. Some of the frowns turned to smiles as the children gently pet Charity and Rhoda. Some kids buried their tear-stained faces into the dogs' fur as they held on tight and processed the day. Some gave hugs and rested their heads on the top of the dogs' heads for just a moment in time to feel better.
It was an honor for the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs to be with these amazingly resilient kids in their time of need to offer unconditional love, peace, and hope.
On Tuesday, June 22, LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Britta (LCC Squad) and her veteran handlers, Dale and Joyce Sasse, attended "22" Dinner at Trinity Lutheran Church in Auburn, Illinois. The purpose of the event is to bring attention to the 22 veterans who take their lives every day. The event was well attended. Joyce spoke to the veterans about how the LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry started and serves veterans and their families.
The program for the evening was to spotlight that June is PTSD Awareness Month. The speakers were veterans Matt Sorenson and Kara Barnes. Matt has been attending Trinity's "22" Dinners for some time and has shared his experience with PTSD. He shared his struggles with alcohol abuse, flashbacks, survivor guilt, and losing his family, home, and business. Matt has found his way back and married, and he and his wife Kristi are building their life together, renovating their home, and taking vacations. Matt still has a daily struggle, but with the help of his wife and family and the support of fellow veterans and LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Dinah (Trinity - Auburn, Illinois) he keeps going.
Kara Barnes is a veteran and the Suicide Prevention Program Manager for the Illinois Army National Guard. Kara was the speaker at the May "22" dinner and told the veterans about her job and how her own experience with PTSD and considering suicide led her to her present position to help other veterans.
While PTSD is a hard topic to discuss, both speakers did an excellent job informing us and helping us understand the struggles associated with this illness.
We look forward to sharing time and fellowship with veterans and their families each month.
LCC received the following request from Pastor Jamie Holt of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in St. Charles, Illinois:
Marcelle and her four children are members of St. Mark's Lutheran Church, St. Charles. The single mother of four has diligently worked to provide the best for her family. Last year her oldest daughter, 18-year-old Carli, had just graduated high school and was beginning her college education before the unthinkable happened.
She was studying and working hard to help her mother make ends meet and help support the household. After falling ill, Carli was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). This aggressive cancer required intense, immediate, and continuing treatment. Over the next several months, Carli was subjected to constant medical testing, hospitalizations, and treatments. Her medical needs required Marcelle to leave her job to provide assistance to Carli's daily needs.
Carli has been a warrior through this and is bravely battling her disease. In March, Carli received a bone marrow transplant from her sister. This stem cell therapy as part of her treatment plan along with continued chemotherapy provided encouraging results. The cancer was in remission.
The specialized treatment and medical care have left the family with devastating debt. With little income, the bills are piling up. The family pleas for financial assistance, which will alleviate some of their stress and help Marcelle focus her energy on caring for her four children.
St. Mark's asks that you prayerfully consider donating to this wonderful family and grant Marcelle's family some financial peace of mind.
Thank you for your consideration and may the Lord continue to bless your work for His kingdom!
Pastor Jamie Holt
St. Mark’s Lutheran Church
St. Charles, Illinois
If you are so moved, please prayerfully consider donating to help Marcelle provide for her four children.
Humanitarian Support Still Needed
100% of Your Donations Continue to Support Ukrainians in Need
"We believe and hope that God will stay with us Ukrainians and will save us and lead us through this terrible war.” Pastor Oleksiy Navrotskyy
SELCU Pastors Serving Ukrainians
Oleksiy Navrotskyy (SELCU pastor)
“As you may remember, I keep living my life between two cities (Odessa and Nikolaev). For the first part of the week, I stay at Odessa Lutheran Seminary preparing for ministries and resting. Usually, I go to Nikolaev for ministry for 3-4 days at the end of the week. My mother travels with me always. I do not want her to stay in Nikolaev because of often shellings. It is unsafe and very stressful to stay in Nikolaev (she is 81 years old).
Last weekend was very difficult for us. Last Thursday I went to Nikolaev as usual. On Friday morning a Russian missile hit my childhood area in Nikolaev, just 500 meters from my old home (where my mother lives). A few apartment houses were damaged: windows, doors, and furniture. Hundreds of families lost a place for living (temporarily). Thanks be to God - only twenty people were injured, but one has died. Only civilians were there, in that area; there were no soldiers at all.
The same morning, I visited the place of shelling, helping some people to be evacuated. In the afternoon I took my church elder, Vladimir, and went to the same damaged place in order to distribute water, coffee, and croissants to the people of the damaged area, firemen, and workers. That Friday was very, very difficult. It took me a whole Saturday to rest and recover from the shock and prepare myself for the Sunday Service.
On Sunday morning we had Divine Service at Nikolaev Lutheran Church. The church was fully packed with people; there was no place to sit. People of the church surrounding area know that we distribute food bags and veggies and water provided by LCC; so, more and more new people come to church on Sundays with the expectation to receive at least something. With LCC’s support, we are able to share the Gospel to many new people who have passed by our church before; now they are coming inside.
80% of my congregation is evacuated to Germany (all children and women), but I have about seventy listeners at church on Sunday; only seven of them are church members. People are very surprised by the church's generosity. Some of them are touched to the core and curious about our faith!
We believe and hope that God will stay with us Ukrainians and will save us and lead us through this terrible war. Your prayers are VERY APPRECIATED! Thank you for all your efforts!"
Your Donations are Immediately Helping Ukrainians in Need!
Please prayerfully consider donating to help Ukrainians by showing the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those who are suffering and in need!
Thank You for your support in being the hands and feet of Jesus to those suffering!
Your Donations Continue to Help Christ the King and St. Matthew's Soup Kitchen Serve Those in Need in Their Communities
LCC staff members John Pejchl and Wayne Kolweier delivered checks with your donations to Pastor John and Principal Geri Brazeal of Christ the King Lutheran Church & School in Chicago, Illinois, for support of their ongoing ministries, and to Pastor Cesar Sifuentes of St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Chicago, Illinois, for their ongoing soup kitchen outreach ministry in the Pilsen area of Chicago.