“God sets the lonely in families…” Psalm 68:6 (NIV)
Just when it seemed that life had returned to a tranquil state in the DR Congo, our attention was jolted yet again to the realty that in this country, there is no peace. It is only a momentary pause in pain and suffering until the next tragedy arrives.
Dear Friend of the Children,
I am compelled to let you know about another tragedy that has hit the DR Congo. And as well, I want to announce and encourage you to participate in the “Summer of Care Matching Challenge” which I’ll tell you more about in this letter.
But first, I want to thank our supporters for their care of ICC children. This ministry is only possible because of faithful ICC family members, people like you, who provide for the needs of the children. And as you’ll see, your support is needed now, more than ever!
The news from Désiré, ICC project director in the DR Congo, was startling. Here is part of what he recently told me:
Human life is sacred, but facing a hurricane, life loses its sense of being. The torrential rains that fell on the territory of Kalehe located at 63 km (39 miles) from the territory of Idjwi caused enormous human and material damages. An unprecedented flood has plunged the entire Democratic Republic of Congo into mourning and the territory of Kalehe in particular.
As a result of the tragedy, 517 people died on the spot, 317 were seriously injured, and 1,115 children were orphaned because their parents lost their lives in the natural disaster. A mountain passed over a village at the foot of the same mountain on the shore of Lake Kivu opposite the territory of Idjwi [the island on which ICC’s Patmos Children’s Village is located.]
What a tragedy! Lives Lost! Families torn apart! Children left orphaned!
And what about these orphan children? Désiré wrote of this and the impact it may have on our ICC family.
…the Minister of Social Affairs has asked that the children who have been orphaned by the tragedy be sent to the organizations that take care of vulnerable children, and 33 children have been recommended to ICC-Congo.
Personally, I have shown that we do not have space in the Patmos Children’s Village to receive these children; I do not know what the final decision will be since I have demonstrated this inability. UNICEF is recruiting people to go and assist the children victimized by the unpreventable natural disaster.
Consider the plight of the orphan children just for a few moments. They woke up in the morning with a roof over their heads, food to eat, parents to care for them. Then in a few moments, in less time than it has taken for you to read this letter, it was all gone, carried away by the raging torrent.
Thoughts flood my mind…
- Is this yet another call from God to expand our capacity to care for more children in Congo?
- Will our current children there be willing and able to move over yet again to make room for new brothers and sisters?
- What about the human and physical resources needed to accommodate these children?
- What about the financial resources that will be required?
- And, what about the lean summer months that are upon us, when project needs typically far outpace donations?
Now, more than ever, will you stand with us as we face these challenges together?
As this letter is being prepared, we are deliberating what to do for these children – how many to accept and where to put them. We know that God can make a way. After all, these are all His precious children, and He has called us to care for them.
Summer of Care Matching Challenge
I’m reminded of the words in Isaiah 65:24 that say, “Before they call, I will answer.” For, with the help of anonymous donors, we were already working to establish a special “Summer Care Matching Challenge.” Every “extra” gift this month up to $90,000 will be doubled to create twice the blessing for current children – and for those who may soon become a part of the ICC family.
This is a time of great need within the ICC family. And it’s also a great time of great opportunity.
You’ve done so much for the children, and they appreciate it very much! And now, you have an opportunity to make your support go even further.
Please, while you read this letter, won’t you send in an “extra” gift to help ICC children into the future?
On the children’s behalf, thank-you for your loving care for them.
May God bless you,
Rick Fleck, ICC President