Dianne Newhall of LWML Topsfield has been the liaison between the Topsfield church and Lydia Comfort Dogs team, collecting used jewelry and handbags for the annual fundraiser sale at Messiah Lutheran, Lynnfield, Massachusetts. Her work has been so important. Lydia Comfort Dog left the group a Comfort Dog stuffie sporting LWML purple beads as a reminder of her visit.
Only in the arms of God is there a safe place!
“God is our safe place and our strength.
He is always our help when we are in trouble.”
Lutheran Church Charities is currently on multiple Disaster and Crisis Response deployments in California (mass shooting and fires) and in Florida (Hurricane Michael). The California deployment for the shootings is now also serving all the families displaced from their homes because of the fires happening right now – and we are in the middle of it.
There is still widespread devastation in Panama City, Florida, and our Disaster Response LERT volunteers are on the ground this week to do chainsaw work, tarping roofs, and anything that needs to be done to help those who are still not in their homes from Hurricane Michael. In addition, the semi-truck is arriving today with food and other critical items donated to help the 6,000 individuals each week that Trinity is serving.
We PUT and KEEP boots and paws on the ground to be with people who are suffering! Please keep everyone in California and Florida in your prayers – as in both places we are serving people who have been traumatized.
Here are just a few of the places where LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Ruthie, Emma, Jacob and Hannah (LCC Staff), Cubby (Redeemer – Fort Collins, Colorado), Lois (First Good Shepherd – Las Vegas, Nevada), and Aaron (St. John’s – Napa, California) and their teams have been serving in Thousand Oaks:
The Camp Fire is in Northern California which completely and literally wiped off the map the town of Paradise. Nearly 40,000 displaced, most of whom lost their homes and everything. Untold numbers of people lost their lives or are unaccounted for.
Reports to date are stating that over 90 firefighters who have been risking their life to battle the horrendous flames have lost their own homes due to the current wild fires.
Lord of Life – LaFox: Larry Zagorski, Terry & Mary Kramer, Kevin Krage, Dave Smercina, Jeff Straughn
Prince of Peace – Palatine: Jim Beckley
St. John – Wheaton: Steve Chester, Marty Johnson, David Schesselman,
St. Peter – Schaumburg: Ken Kivarante, Tom Amundsen
Trinity – Lisle: Clay Arnold, Ed & Jan Boerman, Skip & Karen Sorensen, Mike Kostecki, Carl Witt
Trinity – Roanoke: Ron Wagner
Trinity – Roselle: Kristin Bilar, Bob Pautsch
Trinity – Tinley Park: Joel Powless
St. John’s – Dillsboro: Steve Black
Almost every home and business has been affected in some way in Panama City. The destruction is widespread. Many families are living in damaged homes because of limited other housing options. The schools are planning to open this week with children now from several schools having to attend the ones not damaged too severely. The local hospital is not able to reopen for another three months. Only one grocery store is open in town and the checkout lines are always long. Everyone is managing the best they can in a difficult and trying situation.
Trinity Lutheran is helping their community by providing emotional, spiritual, and physical support. They are distributing food and supplies to thousands of affected residents each week with many willing volunteers. They are also housing the many teams who are coming in from all over the country to assist in recovery.
Our LERT team has already tarped several roofs after removing trees from them and doing chainsaw work and debris removal. We are privileged to show the mercy, compassion, presence and proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need.
On Tuesday, November 13, Kathy O’Day and Sean McAdams, LCC Media Specialist, were invited to meet with Pastor Dave Gieseking from Living Water Lutheran Church in Mexico Beach, Florida. Hurricane Michael, with its 155 mph winds and 15’ storm surge, totally wiped his church and home away along with coastal towns. Pastor held worship service on the beach this past Sunday morning to offer the hope of Christ in the midst of chaos. Living Water was known as the “community church” as its doors were always open and they served the community needs with its presence and willing hearts and hands. Help will be needed in this community for many years to come.
CLICK HERE to view to Pastor Dave as he shows the devastation and shares his story
With your help, LCC is blessed to provide the physical help and a comforting presence needed to help individuals, families, first responders, and volunteers in all of these communities who are shocked, devastated, and feeling hopeless and helpless. Please continue to support us with fervent prayer and if you are moved, continue to help us with expenses.