LCC K-9 Ministry Brings Comforting Presence to First Responders and Community Following High School Shooting in St. Louis, Missouri
On Monday, October 24, student Alexandria Bell, 15, and teacher Jean Kuczka, 61, were killed, several others injured, and hundreds of students, teachers, and staff traumatized when a 19-year-old former student suspect entered the Central Visual and Performing Arts High School in St. Louis, Missouri, and began shooting until he was fatally wounded. Due to the heroic act of the teacher, who put herself between her students and the gunman, many students survived a direct vicious attack.
In less than 24 hours, Lutheran Church Charities received an invite from the Wellness Coordinator at the St. Louis Police Department & Communications/911 Call Center to bring the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs to the shocked and hurting community that is greatly impacted by this tragic event. Last week, LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs made several visits to St. Louis Police Departments to offer support and comfort after the tragic school shooting.
Comforting the First Responders and Community
From Wednesday, October 26 through Saturday, October 29, LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs Boaz (Christ the King - Lake Ozark, Missouri), Esther (Holy Cross - Collinsville, Illinois), Noah (Timothy - St. Louis, Missouri), Sheba (Immanuel - Washington, Missouri), Tabby (St. Paul's - Des Peres, Missouri), and Zillah (Immanuel - St. Charles, Missouri) were a presence of love and comfort for many of the first responders of St. Louis.
The LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs teams were invited to three St. Louis Police Departments and their Communications Center to comfort 911 operators, police officers, and support staff. Everyone enjoyed taking a few moments to relax and decompress with the K-9 teams. This community has faced so much sadness and loss this past week, and it is an honor to bring a presence of mercy and compassion to them.
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21
Hearts of Mercy & Compassion In Memory of Alexandria Bell and Jean Kuczka
On Sunday, October 30, members of Timothy Lutheran Church in St Louis, Missouri, signed Hearts of Mercy & Compassion (HMC) for talented student Alexandria Bell and beloved teacher Jean Kuczka, who were killed in the shooting at Central Visual and Performing Arts High School last week. The two Hearts of Mercy & Compassion and crosses were placed at the memorial site at the school campus on Monday, October 31.
The loss of Alexzandria and Jean is heavy on the hearts of many who knew and loved them. We pray that these Hearts of Mercy & Compassion and the messages on them will be a source of hope and comfort to all who see them.
LCC's K-9 Comfort Dog and Hearts of Mercy & Compassion Ministries never charge those we serve as we bring the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need. We know that comfort is needed to help this shocked and devastated community and the first responders who serve them.