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Tim Speaks at LWML Ohio Convention Print E-mail
Tim Tim Hetzner, President of Lutheran Church Charities, spoke at the annual Lutheran Women’s Ministry League (LWML) Ohio Convention Saturday, June 25th. The convention was well attended with over 400 in attendance. This year’s theme was "It Only Takes a Spark" based on Luke 24:32. Tim spoke on the unity of the body of Christ as well as the impact Lutheran Church Charities had on the people of Orlando in light of the recent shootings. Tim concluded with “Lessons from an Old Comfort Dog” a personal reflection authored by Tim, which received a standing ovation.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 29 June 2016 07:23
 
Second Team Returns from Orlando Print E-mail
Orlando Love is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. 1 Corinthians 13:7

Last week, a second team of handlers and K-9 Comfort Dogs from Peace Lutheran Church - Grand Island, Nebraska; Redeemer Lutheran Church - Fort Collins, Colorado; and Concordia University - Mequon, Wisconsin arrived in Orlando to give love, compassion and comfort to all those who God placed in their path.

God perfectly arranged each encounter between the Comfort Dogs and their handlers with those who were hurting.

Comfort Dogs Zoey, Eddie and Cubby, with their handlers, stopped by several of the fire stations in Orlando who welcomed a visit from the team. The men and women of each fire station were thankful to receive the comfort and love these furry new friends gave as they shared their stories and hurts with the handlers. During one of these visits, it was requested that LCC K-9 Cubby, Eddie and Zoey visit the shifts of 911 Communication Center that were on duty the night of the Pulse Club shooting. This shift had not yet had an opportunity to visit with the dogs and really needed the gentleness, patience, and comfort that is freely offered by the Comfort Dogs. The 911 dispatchers are still distraught from the all the calls they received that night, replaying each moment over and over. They needed to share their stories with the handlers, who listened and offered prayer. The LCC K-9 Comfort Dog teams must have heard the words "thank you" at least 200 times that night from the supervisors, dispatchers, and police.

Orlando

The team of handlers and dogs were blessed with opportunities to visit patients at the hospital in Orlando. While there, the team was asked to visit an 11-year-old girl who has been fighting cancer since age 4 and would be going home under hospice care. Each dog and handler took a turn visiting this precious child. She gave all her energy so she could pet each dog. She especially loved Cubby because she reminded her of her own dog, Butter, who she had not seen in a while. Her father broke down watching his daughter smile and having a moment of joy. The team prayed with her father, who was fighting so hard to be strong for his daughter. God brought the team to that family that day.

After visiting the fire stations, K-9 Eddie and his handler went for a walk to refresh and refocus. It was on this walk that God once again was directing their path. As they were walking by the 49 crosses representing each of the victims, they encountered a man and his mother. They mother and son stopped to pet Eddie. When the man found out the dog’s name (Eddie), he broke down and hugged Eddie so tightly. The man's brother was one of the victims and was buried that day. His brother’s name was Eddie. This man and his mother needed comfort and love and God made sure they received it that day.

Orlando

The handlers from Peace Lutheran Church, Redeemer Lutheran Church, and Concordia University Wisconsin shared that when the people of this grieving community pet the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs, they poured out their hearts to the handlers and dogs. It was as if they were pulling out all of the sadness they were holding in and releasing it to Eddie, Cubby, and Zoey.

This is what this ministry is: the Mercy, Compassion, Presence, and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those who are suffering and in need. Even though the teams have now left Orlando, we want you to know you remain in our prayers. Thank you for opening your city and your hearts to the 15 LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and 26 handlers.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 June 2016 12:37
 
Comfort Dogs Visit Arnold Palmer and Winnie Palmer Hospitals in Orlando Print E-mail
Arnold Palmer House Pictured are LCC Comfort Dog Susie and her friends Phoebe, Barnabas, Myelah, Jacob and Sasha outside the Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, with Jeanine who arranged the visit. Susie, Phoebe and Sasha visited Arnold’s, while the other 3 dogs visited Winnie's.

From Brad Schroeder about the Comfort Dogs June 16th visit to Arnold Palmer and Winnie Palmer’s hospitals in Orlando

We had the joy of visiting many of the staff on the floors of the hospital, along with a number of children patients. Susie and I visited with a few children in the oncology ward. To see these little ones battling cancer was heartbreaking. At the same time it was heartwarming as they petted Susie and had a smile on their little faces. The other children we were blessed to meet loved Susie as we walked the wards.

The staff were so happy to meet and pet our dogs. These people treat these little ones every day and you can see they give their hearts to these children. I was humbled by their love and dedication to the kids. They are heroes.

We then greeted many children and parents in the cool Disney walkway. They loved our dogs and each of us handlers were so blessed to be there. I think we all shed a tear as we saw these children, many battling for their lives, loving our dogs.

I will remember this visit forever as one of love and awe. We are fortunate to have our health. I thank Jeanine and her staff for having us there and making the visit incredible. They are wonderful and care so much for the kids.

The other group that visited Winnie's were also thrilled and humbled by their time with staff and the children

I thank God for giving us these dogs and the opportunity to serve these children. Please keep Jeanine, all the staff and all the children in your prayers. God has a purpose for us all, today it was to bring a little happiness to the kids and the wonderful staff. Brad and Susie

From Jeanine Clapsaddle who organized the visit for the hospitals

It was such a great day with Susie, Phoebe, Sasha, Barney, Jacob and Mahlah! They brought great comfort to so many people- everyone from patients and parents, nurses, doctors, and administrators. There are no words to thank you for the gifts of your time and compassion. As Helen Keller once said, people may not remember what you did or what you said but they will remember the way that you made them feel. We will remember you for offering us a few moments of peace.

Our thoughts are with you as you process all that you have witnessed and absorbed in your time here.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 June 2016 13:25
 
Comfort Dogs Visit Grieving Students in Rantoul, Illinois Print E-mail
Rantoul Principal Todd Wilson of Rantoul High School, Rantoul, Illinois, contacted LCC Sunday afternoon to request a visit Monday morning, June 20th. A student attending Summer School, Dakota Odem was killed in a car accident. Two other students from a neighboring school were also involved, one has broken ribs and leg, the other is in a coma. By 8am Monday morning LCC Comfort Dogs Darlin and Angel as well as Comfort Dogs in Training Olive, Gideon and Jeremiah and their handlers were at the school ready to meet the students when they arrived.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 June 2016 13:24
 
One K-9 Team Returns Home as the Next One Heads for Orlando Print E-mail
Orlando As the first team headed home from Orlando Monday morning June 20, the second team was preparing to go. Tuesday morning June 21, Eddie Comfort Dog from Peace Lutheran - Grand Island, Nebraska, Cubby Comfort Dog- Redeemer, Colorado, and Zoey Comfort Dog- Concordia University Wisconsin traveled to Orlando to spread the mercy, compassion, presence, and proclamation of Jesus Christ. They will be serving the Orlando community until Monday, June 27. Please keep everyone in your prayers. CLICK HERE TO GIVE TODAY

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Last Updated on Monday, 27 June 2016 15:32
 
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