In the aftermath of December 30, 2021, Marshall Fire that destroyed over 1,000 homes in Louisville and Superior, Colorado, people came together for the Boulder Valley Build Expo held at Ascent Church in Louisville, Colorado.
This Expo provided an opportunity for those who lost their homes in the Marshall Fire on December 30 to hear and meet with local builders and city officials and attend presentations that would assist them in making decisions on the rebuilding process of their homes and neighborhoods. There were also 35 other businesses present for people to meet with any questions or concerns they had. Four hundred eight-five households were invited to this Expo.
LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Cubby and Devorah (Redeemer - Fort Collins, Colorado) were invited to attend the Boulder Valley Build Expo event to be there with the participants. Cubby and Devorah Comfort Dogs greeted people on Friday and Saturday as they entered the church to attend the Expo. After two months after these horrific fires, the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry handlers and ministry partners could see the distraught, lost looks on people’s faces who are still trying to navigate the fact that the fire consumed all they owned and how to begin the rebuilding process.
People shared with Cubby's and Devorah's team the stories of their pets lost in the fire or due to illness as they petted and sought the comfort and warmth of the Comfort Dogs.
The fires that happened in December also separated families from their beloved pets. Several of the pet owners shared how they could not take their pets with them when they found temporary housing and had to arrange to have their four-legged family members to be fostered for them temporarily. Many of these families were going to visit their pets after the Expo.
The LCC K-9 Comfort Dog team with Cubby and Devorah also met city officials who were present to show their support and many volunteers who continue to show their love and concern and help out where needed.
The handlers and ministry partners had the opportunity to pray with a woman who praised God for being with her through this tragedy. She shared that without her faith, she was not sure how she would have been able to live day by day through this crisis.
One of the attendees said the Expo was overwhelming but helpful for her. She said it made such a difference to see and pet the dogs. “They help me to just breathe.”
A man who came with his daughter said, “Thank you for bringing these wonderful dogs- they are good for the soul!”
The LCC K-9 Ministry team from Redeemer Lutheran Church, Fort Collins, Colorado, is building a strong relationship with the Louisville and Superior communities and Ascent since the fires that happened in December and will continue to support the victims as they continue to heal and rebuild.
God is in control and working as the communities of Louisville, and Superior move forward after the fires.
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8