LCC Lutheran Early Response Teams Help Homeowners in Arkansas with Property Clean-Up after Catastrophic Tornado
On March 31, an EF-3 tornado at 165 mph tracked just over thirty-four miles from West Little Rock through North Little Rock, Sherwood, and Jacksonville leaving a path of destruction, injury, and death.
FEMA now reports that 3,000 structures have major damage or were destroyed throughout the LCMS Mid-South District in Little Rock, North Little Rock, Sherwood, and Jacksonville, Arkansas. Lutheran Early Response Team (L.E.R.T.) volunteers from multiple states and districts, including ours, have been volunteering to serve those in need.
Kathy O’Day, LCC Director of Disaster Response, and seven LCC L.E.R.T. chainsaw volunteers joined with other volunteers from different states to serve those in need in Little Rock, North Little Rock, Sherwood, and Jacksonville, Arkansas.
L.E.R.T. volunteers completed work at twenty-eight sites in two weeks, with several of these multi-day work sites due to the extent of the damage on large properties. They were able to provide debris removal, utilize chainsaws and bobcats to remove many downed and damaged trees from tornado-devastated properties, and provide emotional and spiritual care to families who lost their homes.
In one neighborhood, several pine trees fell on and between four yards of homes. None of the homeowners knew how they would be able to remove these large trees. They were very appreciative of L.E.R.T. assistance, care, and crosses given to them.
The LCMS Mid-South District sincerely thanks the Lutheran Church Charities L.E.R.T. volunteers from the following churches that served those in need:
Immanuel, Dundee – Matt Flynn
Immanuel, Shobonier – Fran Collier
Lord of Life, Elburn – Vince Miller, Larry Zagorski
St. John, Wilmette – Tom Morrison
Trinity, Davenport – Ken Stotmeister
Brookfield, Brookfield – CJ Kraft
In two weeks, we made a difference in the lives of those we served with chainsaws and emotional assistance, as well as offering the hope and love of Christ to a hurting community.
LCC never goes where we are not invited.
These are just a few of the many ways L.E.R.T. volunteers are present with physical assistance and caring hearts. It is a blessing to be able to bring Christ’s hope, mercy, and compassion to this shocked and hurting community.
If you are so moved, please donate to the LCC Disaster Response Fund or LCC Equipment Maintenance & Fuel Expense Fund so that we may continue to show the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation
LCC works in coordination with LCMS Disaster Response national and local districts of the LCMS.
Patricia is a single woman who worked as a childcare specialist and as a paraprofessional in education. She has been a member of Grace Lutheran Church for 40 years.
Recently she has experienced a number of health challenges requiring hospitalization and rehabilitation. Medicare has declined payment of $3,640 of her most recent bill.
Your assistance would be greatly appreciated as the family strives toward long-term solutions.
Grace Lutheran Church
If you are so moved, please prayerfully consider donating to help Patricia.
There were a total of eighteen in attendance from the following teams or churches in Illinois:
- Hosanna, St. Charles
- Lord of Life, LaFox
- Prince of Peace, Palatine
- St. John, Wheaton
- St. Peter, Schaumburg
- Trinity, Genoa
It is good to see how the disaster response ministry is continuing to grow with volunteers willing to share the mercy, compassion, presence and proclamation of Jesus Christ in service to those suffering and in need.
- Hope, Shorewood - Nathaniel Stoll
- Immanuel, Dundee - Mike Brocato, Bill Conforti, Randy and Jeannine Farwell, Carl Fischer, Matt Flynn, Doug Hoyt, Albert Navarro, Lark Sanders, Aleis Vasa
- Immanuel, Palatine - Chris Johnson
- St. Peter, Schaumburg - Tom Amundsen, Vicki Kiviranta, Bob and Barb Royce
- Trinity, Roselle - Kristin Bilar
Local L.E.R.T. volunteers finished working last week in Marengo, DeKalb, and Belvidere, Illinois, at two more homes and a church affected by the tornado and high wind event that struck the Northern Illinois District on March 30.
The homeowners and church elders were thankful for the willingness to help them remove downed trees and dangerous hanging limbs.
During the ceremony, which was held at Timberline Church in Fort Collins, Larimer County Sheriff’s Deputies were gifted potentially life-saving armor. Community members were also invited to Adopt a Larimer County Deputy to support now prayerfully and in the future as they perform their duties.
The President and CEO of Shield616, Jake Skifstad, told how his vision for “Angel Armor” evolved. He is a retired Police Officer and SWAT Officer from Colorado Springs. He was involved with the New Life and Planned Parenthood shootings in Colorado Springs in 2007, in which the shooters used assault rifles, and one officer was killed, and others were injured.
After 14 years as an Officer, God asked him to do more. He and his team are now working tirelessly to show that first responders are being protected, loved, and supported. Shield616 was founded to provide rifle protection for first responders who sacrificially serve our communities, including police, sheriff, fire, and EMS. 616 is for Ephesians 6:16, which begins, “In all circumstances take up the shield of faith…”.
Newly elected Larimer County Sheriff John Feyen spoke passionately about his faith and stated, “Before putting on the rest of my gear, first I put on the armor of God.”
Each Deputy was given new Angel Armor vests, a Bible with a thin blue line on the cover, and a challenge coin given to the person who “Adopted” them. The Angel Armor only weighs 2.2 pounds and can stop bullets from assault rifles. Their current body armor weighs over 20 pounds and can only stop bullets from a pistol.
The church was filled with Deputies, their families, friends, and community members. Devorah greeted people as they came in and stayed until everyone left. Her handlers, Bonnie Fear and Jody Lockwood adopted a Deputy and plan to share their names with their team so everyone can include them in their prayers.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Charity (Brookfield - Brookfield, Wisconsin), Mary (St. Paul's - Janesville, Wisconsin), and Sage (Concordia University Wisconsin - Mequon, Wisconsin) were invited to attend Rolling Hills Elementary, Mukwonago, Wisconsin, Art Walk Fundraiser for their PTO.
It was an opportunity for students and parents in the district to meet the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs at their art show done by students featuring the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and a spaghetti dinner.
The children and parents were such a delight at the event. Charity, Mary, and Sage enjoyed spending time with them.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs were invited back to the Monterey Park Police Department, California, following an officer involved shooting.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Lois (First Good Shepherd - Las Vegas, Nevada), and Reuben (First Lutheran - Yuba City, California), visited with the police department’s officers, records, department evidence technicians, and staff. They also visited City Hall staff, fire department, and the Los Angeles county coroner’s office.
It was so good to see them all once again. We value our friendships made in Monterey Park and are grateful to walk alongside them in this uncertain world.
On Saturday, April 22, LCC K-9 Comfort Dog® Ministry was part of a Chicago Survivors Wellness Fair. The fair is to provide resources to those that have lost loved ones in violent way in Chicago.
There were many organizations including the Chicago Police Departments to help navigate the resources for those attending. LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry was able to interact and pray with a number of family members that have lost a loved one in street violence in Chicago.
They live every day remembering their loved ones that they lost as well as dealing with illness, poverty and fear.
The Ministry was represented by Squad members Army veteran handler Dale Sasse with LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Britta, Air Force veteran handler Keith Stanton with LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Butch, Navy veteran handler Gene Weisbecker with LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Flex (filling in for Army veteran handler Fred Vanstrom), and Linda Showens with LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry Dog Spike (filling in for Army veteran handler Raleigh Showens). Squad member Bob Royce also attended. Kare 9 Nigel and Marvin’s dog Brandy were also present.
We pray for Marvin’s wife, Yoshiko and family as they grieve the passing of this good Christian man.
The other Kare 9s and their handlers who launched the Ministry are Blitz (Bob Royce, U.S. Army Veteran), Brutus (Gene Weisbecker, U.S. Navy Veteran), Spike (Raleigh Showens, U.S. Army Veteran), Flex (Fred Vanstrom, U.S. Army Veteran), Britta (Dale Sasse U.S. Army Veteran), Butch (Keith Stanton U.S. Air Force Veteran), Chief (Richard Skinner U.S. Navy Veteran). These Kare 9s and their handlers are known as "The Squad."
We thank Marvin and his wife, Yoshiko, for their loyal service to their Lord and the LCC Kare 9 Military Ministry.
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Families In Need
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In The News
K-9 Comfort Dogs
K-9 Court System - Ezra
K-9 Police Ministry
K-9 Travel Expenses
Kare 9 Military Ministry
Kind Words For HMC
Kind Words For K9s
Kind Words For LCC
Kind Words For LCC Disaster Response
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs
LERT Mercy In Action
Maryland Great Falls
Ministries In Need
Prospect Heights Fire
Thank You From LCC
Tornadoes In Tennessee
Turkey And Syria Earthquake
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