Hurricane Relief Grants

Hurricane Harvey

 

Our Gulf Coast Synod, ELCA, has posted information about how to apply for grants for Hurricane and Flood Relief.  Here is what they have to say about this:

Dear Gulf Coast Synod Leaders,

In the weeks since Hurricane Harvey, we have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support from God’s people around the world.  Many gifts were shared with us on your behalf.  In an effort to assess needs to distribute these gifts, we invite you to participate in our disaster grant process.  Although the funds cannot replace all that you have lost, we pray that the grants disbursed will be of help in a significant way.

This link will direct you to the page on our website that was prepared for this unique purpose: gulfcoastsynod.org/congregations/disaster/grant

You can also find this page by clicking the yellow “Disaster Grant” link, on the Disaster Prep & Recovery page of the synod website (gulfcoastsynod.org).

 

Our timeline for distribution is:

Application deadline: December 31, 2017.

Notification of grant status: January 31, 2018.

 

We will take into consideration critical needs and respond appropriately to the requests identified in that manner.

Please note that the phrase “disaster recovery needs” includes damage done to the location of your special community outreach ministries, such as food pantry, book pantry/collection, and so forth, as well as the ability to continue these ministries following the disaster that may or may not have flooded your congregation’s facilities. We can discuss any questions you have about what can be represented in your request.

 

Amount of Your Request Range

We ask that you request a dollar range (e.g. $2K to $5K), rather than a specific dollar amount. This allows us some flexibility as we determine how best to stretch the dollars in the fund.

 

Designated Contact Person

Please clearly identify the person who will be accountable to corresponding with the synod about this grant request. We ask that the contact person provide an update to the synod 3-6 months following distribution, as to how the money was actually used.  Before-&-after photos of your project, along with a couple of sentences on how the grant supported your recovery efforts, will be used in synod communications about funding, recruiting volunteers, and especially to those who want to support this recovery effort with their prayers.

 

About Additional Documents

Please attach any documents that will assist in decision-making regarding this request. This may be a document you already have distributed to your church council or congregation outlining the status of the damage and the related repair/rebuild costs. If the document is accessible by link to your Web site, please indicate that by providing the link in your response to us.

 

Sample Documents

Thanks to Salem Evangelical, Houston, and St James/Santiago Apostόl for allowing their own status statements to be used as samples. These documents are an example of the questions we will ask about your current status.

 

Thank you for your commitment to fulfilling God’s call to the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod for holistic ministry in this region.

We look forward to hearing from you through this means and in continuing conversations about our service together in the Gulf Coast.

 

Blessings,

Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Recovery Team

Hurricane Relief Day – September 9

Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Response

You can help this week.

Our Gulf Coast Synod has organized a Hurricane Harvey Work Day. It will be this Saturday, September 9. There are several crews being organized. One crew will be out of Lutherhill, which will help in Fayette County. Visit the Synod web page link below to find out more:  Click Link.

Please note that the sign up deadline to be part of one of these crews is Wednesday, September 6.

 

Our Hurricane Relief page is being updated frequently.  Check out that page to find more way to help.  Monetary donations are especially helpful at this time.

Click here for the link to our Hurricane Relief page.

Hurricane Relief: Help Now

Hurricane Harvey Relief

Photo of Relief Workers, as shown on the Lutheran Disaster Response Web Site.

For continued updates on Hurricane Relief, see this page:  Click Link

Together We Can Help

We will have an ongoing Hurricane Harvey Recovery Page on the church web site.

There are several ways to help right now with relief for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.  There are and will be many volunteer opportunities.  As you are able, please give of your time to help those in need.  Much of the focus has been on Houston, since there are millions who have faced damage, displacement, loss, or more.  There are also many in Fayette County who have faced similar struggles due to flooding of the Colorado River and other waterways.  Our town has had flooding, but not to the point of massive damage.  It looks like the flooding of May 2016 in Carmine was worse for our town than that brought by Hurricane Harvey.

Ways to help:

At this time monetary donations are the most helpful.  You can always give through MLLC. All gifts will be forwarded to Lutheran Disaster Response, our ELCA organization which is already at work for long term relief from Hurricane Harvey in Texas.

*We will receive donations through the offerings at every worship service as long as there is need to help.  Designate the gift as Hurricane Relief.

*You can mail in a check to MLLC at any time.  Designate the gift as Hurricane Relief.

*You can give through our web site.  Click this link for our special giving web page.  On that page you can choose the section for Disaster Relief.  Gifts can be made through your bank account, debit card or credit card.

Mucking Crews – groups of people who will help clean up junk and ruined parts of homes so householders can fix up their homes and move back in.  Our Gulf Coast Synod has partnered with crisiscleanup.org to coordinate volunteers to help muck out homes.   Chris Markert, Assistant to the Bishop, will be helping synod church volunteer crews get connected to opportunities to serve.  Here is the contact page for Pastor Markert:  Click this link.

 

ELCA Gulf Coast Synod Message

Our Gulf Coast Synod has shared this message:

The number one question we hear: “How can I help?”

As followers of Jesus, we seek to love our neighbor and serve those in need.

So first, thank you. Here on the Gulf Coast, we have heard and felt your love and support during this disaster.

Second, as people of faith, join us in prayer. For first responders and those who had to evacuate flooded homes, for people worried about family and those who trying to pick up the pieces.

Third, financial gifts are more helpful than gifts of goods right now. Financial resources are portable and used for many different purposes. Consider donating to the Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Fund (to help congregations and their people get back on their feet and serve their neighborhoods http://gulfcoastsynod.org/Hurricane-Harvey) and to Lutheran Disaster Response (for case management).

Finally, wait and listen. The disaster isn’t over. It is still raining. Once the rain stops and the water recedes, then the work begins. Then we will begin to assess what the needs are and begin to clean up.

Lutherhill Weekend 2015

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Joyful Weekend

We celebrated God’s love for the world and we celebrated our partnership with Lutherhill Ministries on the weekend of August 22-23, 2015.  Our guest speaker from Lutherhill was Matt Kindsvatter.  He serves as the Executive Director of Lutherhill Ministries.  Matt is a familiar face at MLLC, since he has been a guest preacher several times over the years.  Matt was the preacher at both the Saturday evening and Sunday morning services.

Lutherhill Sunday 2015 Matt

MLLC Kids Get in on the Act

Several of the youth from the congregation participated in the service.  The Lutherhill staff members worked with the youth to prepare a skit for use in worship on Sunday.  The skit reminded the congregation to share God’s love with others.  Here is a photo of the MLLC Thespians in action.

Lutherhill Sunday 2015 Skit

Making a Joyful Noise

Lutherhill staff members lead the music on Sunday.  All of the songs were ones which were sung at camp during the summer 2015.  This gave us a taste of the joyful songs which the youth sang while at camp this year.

Lutherhill Sunday 2015 Singing

Blessing of Backpacks and Students

We continued our annual tradition of blessing our students and their backpacks.  This Sunday was the weekend just before most of our students returned to school.  We invite students of all ages to come forward.  From year to year the age range varies depending upon who is present on the day.  Some years the grade level ranges from nursery school to graduate school.

Lutherhill Sunday 2015 Students

We are very thankful for the wonderful ministry we do with Lutherhill Ministries.  About 15 youth from MLLC attended Summer Camp at Lutherhill this year.  We look forward to an even better year in 2016.  Here is a photo of three of our youth working on dining hall clean up at Lutherhill in August 2015.

Lutherhill at Camp for Newsletter Sep15

Lutherhill Weekend August 22 & 23

Lutherhill-LogoWe invite you all to a very special event here at MLLC.  On the weekend of August 22-23 we will welcome Matt Kindsvatter, the executive director of Lutherhill Ministries.  He is familiar to many people in MLLC.  We know him from his previous visits to MLLC, and because many of our youth have attended summer camp at Lutherhill over the years.

Matt will be our preacher at both of our weekend services.  Invite your family and friends for these special times together.  Let’s give Matt and the Lutherhill staff members a great MLLC Carmine Welcome!

Saturday, August 22 at 6 p.m. – Matt will preach at a typical MLLC Saturday evening service.

Sunday, August 23 – three special events in one day

8:30 a.m. – children and youth invited to arrive early to prepare a skit for use in worship.  These young people will meet with Lutherhill staff in the new Mission & Ministry building to prepare a brief skit which will be presented in the 9:00 a.m. worship service.  There is no reservation needed, simply arrive at 8:30 and join in the fun.

9:00 a.m. – worship in the Sanctuary.  Matt and some Lutherhill staff members will lead all of our music this day.  They will teach us and lead us in singing camp style songs.  Matt will also preach at this service.  Our youth will present the skit which they have prepared.  This skit will take the place of the children’s sermon for this day.

10:15 a.m. – Sunday School – Lutherhill staff will lead a children’s Sunday School lesson in the Mission & Ministry building.  We have enjoyed their leadership in the past as they have come to do this over the years.

This summer we had a large group of MLLC youth attend camp at Lutherhill.  This special weekend is a way to celebrate the great summer experience we had at Lutherhill.

Here is a photo of Matt Kindsvatter and Pastor David Tinker after a recent meeting to plan for this special Sunday.

Tinker Kindsvatter Aug15

Gulf Coast Synod Bishop’s Christmas Message

Bishop Mike Rinehart BW

We are a congregation of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod.  We are led by Bishop Michael Rinehart.  In some way each year he presents a Christmas Message for the church.  This year he offers a video message for us.  Click here for a link to this Christmas Message video.

We are in the 12 Days of Christmas, and this is a wonderful time to reflect on God’s goodness and his message of hope in the midst of darkness and sin.

A Great Week at Lutherhill

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The kids from MLLC and Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Round Top have had a great week together at Lutherhill.  Lutherhill Ministries is the area ELCA Lutheran Camp.  It is within the territory of and supported by our own Gulf Coast Synod.

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There were learning and fun events.

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Chapel time.

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Pool time.

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Meals and visiting with Pastor David Tinker and Pastor John David Nedbalek.  And some clean up time.

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And some experience with wildlife.

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Thank you to the people of both congregations who made this wonderful week of adventure, fun, learning, service and worship happen.  Also thank you to the families of our youth who worked to make it possible for these young people to have this experience in their faith.

Youth at Lutherhill Camp

MLLC BLC Lutherhill group 2014

This is a busy week at Lutherhill Ministries in La Grange, TX.  Along with youth from a wide variety of communities there is a combined contingent of campers from MLLC and our neighbor ELCA congregation, Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Round Top.  Five youth from MLLC were joined by several others of our friends in Round Top.  They have been spending the week at this excellent camp. See the photo above with all the kids from these congregations – and an extra friend or two.

Several of the youth have attended camp at Lutherhill several times.  One of the youth has lost count, for he has gone to Lutherhill maybe 4, 5 or 6 years in a row.  Some are having their first experience at this camp, and are hoping for many more summers.

We at MLLC are big supporters of Lutherhill and Lutheran/Christian Camping programs.  We also offer a partial “campership” for MLLC members who would like to participate in the summer camp programs at Lutherhill or other Lutheran summer camping programs.

We will post more photos from this week at camp in the next couple of days.  Remember to keep these youth in your prayers as they grow in Christ through the camping programs of Lutherhill Ministries.

 

Synod Assembly 2014

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We are thankful for our delegation of voting members at our synod assembly this year. These include: Dana Smith, Dennis Smith, Jennifer Tinker, and Pastor David Tinker. This group is representing our congregation at the assembly of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod. This is taking place May 8-10 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.