LCC Disaster Response Ready to Deploy to Florida to Help Assess Property with Catastrophic Damage from Hurricane Ian
Working with LCMS Florida-Georgia District Disaster Response Coordinators to Help Impacted Individuals and Families in Hardest-Hit Areas with Recovery Efforts
Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms ever to strike the US mainland, battered southwest Florida with high winds, rain, and storm surges as it moved inland.
More than 2.5 million homes and businesses were left without power as the storm swept ashore in southwest Florida on Wednesday afternoon, bringing “catastrophic” 150 mph winds and a deadly storm surge of up to 18 feet. Hours later, the storm – estimated to be about 140 miles wide – was downgraded from a high category 4 hurricane to a tropical storm as it moved slowly northeast, causing major flooding.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said it brought “historic” damage to the state. “We’ve never seen a flood event like this,” DeSantis said.
Lutheran Church Charities Disaster Response has been carefully monitoring the path of Hurricane Ian since it began. Kathy O'Day and Ed Boerman, Northern Illinois District Disaster Response Coordinators, have been collaborating with the LCMS Disaster Response and District Disaster Response Coordinators Joel Mathews and Jay Wendland from the Florida-Georgia District.
Rev. Ross Johnson, Director, Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS) Disaster Response and Jay Wendland have asked Kathy O’Day and L.E.R.T. team leader Marty Johnson to travel to Florida next week to be part of the assessment team.
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 of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need.
Please pray for the safety of those in the path of Hurricane Ian, including all of the LCC Disaster Response volunteers and staff, as we deploy to the hardest-hit areas of Florida to help during the long recovery process.
Joyfully serving together in Christ,
Lutheran Church Charities
LCC works in coordination with LCMS Disaster Response national and local districts of the LCMS.
Hurricane Ian Hits West Coast Florida; LCC Disaster Response Is Monitoring and Ready to Respond When Invited
Lutheran Church Charities Disaster Response is carefully monitoring the path Hurricane Ian is taking as it is making landfall in the Gulf States. Kathy O'Day, and Ed Boerman, Northern Illinois District Disaster Response Coordinators, have been collaborating with the LCMS Disaster Response and District Disaster Response Coordinators Joel Mathews and Jay Wendland from the Florida-Georgia District.
When it is safe to enter the disaster-affected areas, the FL-GA DDRCs will assess the damage and then extend the invite to L.E.R.T. volunteers to deploy to offer needed assistance. Lutheran Church Charities L.E.R.T. teams are on standby and ready to respond as needed.
The LCC Disaster Response Ministry never charges those we serve. Please donate to the LCC Disaster Response Fund so that, when invited, we may continue to show the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry Is Grateful for the Opportunity to Serve Uvalde School District in September
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. John 15:9
Twenty-six LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and their handlers from across the country deployed to Uvalde, Texas, over the course of three weeks to walk with the students, teachers, counselors, bus drivers, and office staff as they returned to school.
We invite you to watch the video below with touching scenes from our treasured time in Uvalde and hear from a few of the many handlers who served this incredible community.
It was not easy to say goodbye as the love felt for the children and adults of Uvalde grew each day the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog teams were in the schools. At times the K-9s and their handlers walked with the children to class when they were afraid or sat silently with them as they experienced a moment of sadness and grief. At other times they listened with care and gentleness as they shared their loss and pain.
When needed, the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and kind handlers would surround the children and teachers with love and comfort after a stressful or upsetting school drill. Each day for three weeks, the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs were a calming presence greeting the students with love and soft golden fur to hold onto as their handlers welcomed the children with warm smiles and gentle hugs. This is how they began each morning, as well as those moments throughout the day.
Dear comfort dogs, We are writing to you to thank all the comfort dogs for coming to our school. And having Katie and all the other dogs come in the classroom to comfort us and all of the school. We are very grateful that you and the dogs came here to our school.
The below LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and their dedicated handlers will forever hold in their hearts the students, teachers, counselors, office staff, and bus drivers of Uvalde. LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry is honored by the trust given by Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District (UCISD), allowing us to walk with them during this most difficult and heartbreaking time.
On behalf of Moms for Liberty-Bexar County chapter members, thank you so much for all that you have done for our neighbors in Uvalde. We just sent a donation your way to help alleviate some of the travel expenditures for these sweet dogs and their humans. I know you bring much comfort. Polly
LCC's K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry never goes where we are not invited and never charges those we serve as we bring the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need. We pick up all of our travel, hotel, and meal costs.
Please prayerfully consider donating to the LCC K-9 Comfort Travel Expense Fund so that we can continue serving those suffering and in need when invited.
This past weekend LCC staff member Dianna Bonfield delivered a check with your donations to Breakfast with Baby (BWB) at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Carol Stream, Illinois. BWB Ministry started in 2019, serving nine families by providing diapers, wipes, formula, baby clothing, baby furniture, equipment, and toys, and serving a hot sit down breakfast.
During COVID, BWB transitioned into a Drive Thru Ministry and served an average of 80 to 90 families. On September 17, Our Savior decided to go back to pre-COVID services for BWB, allowing families to come into the building to shop and have a sit-down breakfast as a family.
To be able to serve the increasing number of families coming for assistance, Our Savior expanded the ministry. To purchase more supplies and equipment to expand the ministry, they spent over $4,000, which drained the ministry's financial resources. The check with your donations was a timely Godsend for this ministry.
Breakfast with Baby has been such a dynamic, exciting outreach ministry for Our Savior that they would like to encourage other congregations to consider starting a BWB Ministry in their community. Our Savior has written a free start-up guide that is available for the asking. If you are interested in this ministry, contact Our Savior Lutheran Church at (630) 830-4833.
"I never stop thanking God for you, because through you the Lord richly blesses us, we have everything necessary to serve people, to the glory of God. We thank you for the fact that both in joy and in sorrow we are moving together for Christ. Thank you for supporting our ministry and helping us overcome all trials."
SELCU Pastor Valera Verba
SELCU Pastors Serving Ukrainians
Since March 2022, Lutheran Church Charities has been working cooperatively with pastors of the Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches in Ukraine (SELCU) to provide humanitarian relief which combines the clear proclamation of the gospel.
Pastor Valera Verba's Summary of His Missionary Work
Your Donations are Immediately Helping Ukrainians in Need!
After the passing of Deputy Chief Frese of the Wood Dale Police Department, Illinois, the officers and staff of the Glendale Heights Police Department showed their support and sympathies for their loss by presenting them with a Heart of Mercy & Compassion. Wood Dale Police Department have plans to give the HMC to Deputy Chief Frese’ family.
Last weekend the LCC K-9 Ministry North Central Region traveled to Redeemer, Fort Collins, Colorado, for the regional gathering.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Moses (Christ Lutheran - Cairo, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Eddie (Peace - Grand Island, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Katie (Trinity - Fremont, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Priscilla (Trinity - Lincoln, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Nicodemus (The Rock - Seward, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Joanna (Christ - Lincoln, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Eden (Peace - Columbus, Nebraska)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Keren (Immanuel - Ellsworth, Kansas)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Cubby (Redeemer - Fort Collins, Colorado)
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Devorah (Redeemer - Fort Collins, Colorado)
The LCC K-9 Ministry Regional Gatherings are important to the teams as they get to be together sharing the same mission "sharing the mercy, compassion, presence and proclamation of Jesus Christ to those who are suffering and in need." Seeing how the ministry has grown over the years and how God has connected us as one family is incredible. The regional gatherings remind us how we are not alone but are a family in Christ.
The LCC K-9 Ministry North Central Region participants heard and learned from wonderful speakers that will help the teams grow their ministries in their own communities. The teams also had opportunities to train and enhance their dog handling skills and learn some new training tips to take back home with them.
All ten LCC K-9 Comfort Dog teams even went out into the community to serve together at Scheels. Seeing the happiness and smiles on people's faces as they got to meet and interact with the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs was a joy. The weekend's highlight was the time spent together praying, talking, embracing, and rejoicing in being a part of this ministry, knowing Jesus brought us all together. It is Jesus who guides each of our steps, who teaches us to see those around us, to listen to others without an agenda, to care for and love others, and who gives us His strength and His peace to continue on in serving others.
LCC K-9 Ministry looks forward to the October Southwest Regional Gathering held in Texas.