A Special Christmas Hope Matching Challenge Doubles Your Gift!

December 1, 2023

Dear Friend of the Children,

As I pen these thoughts to you, I once again must say how much I praise God for each of you who are praying for and supporting this ministry for the less fortunate children.

This year there have been many blessings in the ICC families, including receiving new children, children going to school, graduations, baptisms and even weddings! The cycle of family life is something we try to provide for these children who have lost their families, and you have helped us to do that.

I am also very excited to let you know that once again some of our dedicated ICC family members have offered a special matching challenge.

From now until the end of December, your special gift can be doubled to provide even more of a blessing for the children. I know that many of you who are able will want to take advantage of this opportunity. 

We just ask that the gift that you give for this matching challenge be something extra beyond what you might normally give if that is possible for you. Just mark this extra gift as “Christmas Hope Matching Challenge.” Thank you so much!

I have the privilege of seeing up close the huge blessing that your donations provide in the lives of so many. That includes children like little Lea from the DR Congo.

On May 4, 2023, an unprecedented event occurred in a territory near ICC’s Patmos Children’s Village in the DR Congo. It was market day. Heavy rain fell from the sky and onto mountains above unsuspecting villagers below.  Torrents of water and mud rushed down the slopes causing enormous loss of human life, livestock, and catastrophic damage to property. Bodies and debris were washed into Lake Kivu. 

ICC was created for tragedies such as this and the orphans who are left behind. And it’s your support that enabled us to rescue children like 4-year-old Lea along with dozens of other children who lost their parents that day. 

Lea and the other children arrived at the Patmos Children’s village hungry and scared. But thanks to your support, the caregivers were able to quickly provide the children with the basics of life including the loving care they desperately needed – and continue to need! I’ll tell you more about that later, but first, it has been several months since the new children arrived, and I wanted to share an update from our project director.

The children are progressing well, they are improving their health, and we are seeing progress at all levels such as intellectual, moral, health, physical and spiritual. Children integrate easily into social life in our children’s village, thanks to the care of house parents who spend a lot of time with them. 

The parents help them forget the bad time they went through before being welcomed into Patmos Children’s Village. The social worker plays her role effectively with the children. The psychologist does likewise, and the psychosocial protection of the children is guaranteed. 

The proof is that the health of the children improves from day to day, and compared to their state of health on the day they came to the Patmos Children’s Village, it should be noted that there is no comparison. 

The active and positive progress of the children is a testament to the fact that ICC donors took care of them. It was obviously they, with God’s providence, who saved these children from a sudden and premature death. Their funding helps restore the children’s health because they get medical care on time, balanced diet and three meals a day, and the children who are of school age are either in kindergarten school or primary school. 

Unfortunately, just this week extremely heavy and unusual rain hit the Patmos Children’s Village. Thanks to the donations from ICC family members like you which came in after the other disaster earlier this year, they were able to create several more drainage channels through the village, so the damage was less than it would have been otherwise. Yet there was still damage. Here is an edited excerpt from what Désiré told me:

This morning, extra heavy rainfall created fear and panic at Patmos village and closed all the school activities. Early in the morning, children were getting ready for school and their mothers were busy preparing breakfasts. 

Unexpected torrential rain fell causing terror in the hearts of everyone in the children’s village.  Erosion from the mountains and hills above Patmos village overflowed the two bridges that we built recently, and the landslide around house 12 opened a way for erosion to enter the house and in all the rooms. 

The house parents and children were in a very hard situation and started calling and crying for help. Nobody could cross the bridges to reach the children’s village; it was when the rain stopped that we used a small boat with fishermen to cross over the lake. Reaching the place, we saw that water stagnated in the house, and everything was wet. 

Fortunately, we had built water channels everywhere at Patmos village which helped lead water towards the lake. If we had not done much work in May, June, July and August to prevent erosion, things would have been worse this morning. 

These are the stories that leave us looking to Heaven and admitting that we live in a broken world. Somehow, God inspires kind-hearted people to step up and help in all these situations, and we trust that He will touch your heart too. 

And here, at the end of they year, we need your help. The care of the 48 new children we received in Congo has increased the financial need at the Patmos Children’s Village by nearly $10,000 per month! 

That’s why the “Christmas Hope Matching Challenge” is so very important for the children this month. Your support is needed to help transform the lives of orphan and vulnerable children in Congo and in other countries where children have become a part of the ICC family. Please send in your gift today, go online, or use this QR Code to participate in this special matching offer!

I want to assure you that ICC projects are doing what they can to use your support wisely. And as we have mentioned before, ICC projects are trying hard to have some industries which can help them be more self-sustaining. From a small commercial dairy in the Dominican Republic, greenhouses in El Salvador, to a large commercial pepper farm in Mexico, God is blessing those efforts. These industries are helping to stretch the impact of your support even further.

In closing, I recognize that most of you are not able to travel around the world and visit the ICC projects. I wanted this letter to give you a little glimpse into this ministry and the children who are the center of our focus.

Of course, the real center of our focus is always Jesus and His love and sharing that good news with those young children who have lost so much. At Christmas, our children will be focusing on Jesus yet again and the wonderful gift He gave by coming to earth to be our Savior. The ICC family of supporters, children, and staff have a wonderful hope in our Savior, and it is such a blessing that this ministry is able to share that hope, that love, and that Heavenly Father with so many who have lost all hope.

May God richly bless you this Christmas season. Thank you for all you do for the children!

Rick Fleck

P.S. To take advantage of year-end tax benefits, please respond by December 31. And to take part in the Christmas Hope Matching Challenge, please respond as quickly as possible!  Thank you!


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