“By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace” (Luke 1:78-79).

“Our neighbors to our south need our help”.

Below is a message from Pastor Daniel Rift, the Director for Lutheran Disaster Response. As many of you know, 2021 is the Year of Generosity, and the Northwestern Ohio Synod is partnering with Lutheran Disaster Response for a generous “year-end campaign”. Lutheran Disaster Response is an incredible organization that provides immediate and long-term relief and resources to those who experience natural disasters, including those communities impacted by the thirty tornados that swept through six states this past weekend.

If you have not taken the opportunity to give to Lutheran Disaster Response, please give. If you have already given, I would encourage you to give again. Rachel and I made a gift to Lutheran Disaster Response on Giving Tuesday, and we are committing to give an additional gift this week to help our neighbors to our south.

In this Year of Generosity will you and your family partner with us, with Lutheran Disaster Response, and with the Living God, to bring renewal and restoration to so many who have lost so much.

On the night of Dec. 10 and early morning of Dec. 11, an outbreak of at least 30 tornadoes swept through six states. So far, 94 people are reported dead across five states, more than 80 of those in Kentucky. For those unaccounted for, search-and-rescue operations are underway. Homes and businesses were destroyed, and over 300,000 people were without electricity.

Lutheran Disaster Response is collaborating with the Indiana-Kentucky Synod and other partners in the area to assess the damage and develop an immediate and a long-term response plan. Your gifts to support these response efforts will empower our partners to meet survivors’ immediate and long-term needs. Given the extent of the damage, recovery will take years as thousands of homes will need to be rebuilt or repaired. With your support, Lutheran Disaster Response can accompany survivors on the long road to recovery.

Your gifts to “U.S. Tornadoes” will be used in full (100%) to help people impacted by the tornadoes until the response is complete.

The season of Advent is a time of hope as we prepare to celebrate Christ’s birth. Right now, we have an opportunity to share hope with our neighbors in their time of greatest need. Please join me in prayer and consider giving if you are able.

In Christ’s service,
The Rev. Daniel Rift
Director, ELCA World Hunger and Lutheran Disaster Response Fund
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Checks or money orders can be sent to:
Lutheran Disaster Response
P.O. Box 1809
Merrifield, VA 22116-8009
Write “U.S. Tornadoes” on your check memo line.