Written by Pr. Ginger Anderson
The Hands of God’s people worked prior to Sunday, September 14, when Zion, Wyoming and St. John, Olin, celebrated God’s Work Our Hands. We acknowledge that most of our ELCA friends did this a week earlier; however we were purposeful in carrying out ours a week later! Lutheran Services in Iowa Advancement Officer Deb Whitford and Fatherhood Support Worker Robert Hummel were able to be in our midst that day to tell stories of the way we partner with them to use our “Hands” to do God’s work of caring for people who come to LSI.
Prior to September 14, an amazing amount of creative shopping and sorting of closets and drawers and sheds took place. People assembled “tool kits” (hammer, pliers, screwdrivers, wrenches, assorted screws) to be given to new dads through the programming ministry of LSI with new dads. Others searched through garage sales and closets to find “like new” clothing for newborns and toddlers.
In addition to the gifts the “Hands” of individuals brought, a small group at Zion, using a Thrivent donated $250 gift card, went Good Will shopping, and bought an enormous amount of clothing on Goodwill’s twenty-five cent an item sale, as well as several new tool kits.
St. John member, Jack Gray, was commissioned to build a dozen wooden tool carrying boxes. These simple but beautifully built boxes brought tears to Fatherhood Support Worker Robert’s eyes as he recognized what it would mean for his new dads to have not only tools but a place to keep their tools!
All of these gifts were brought forward in a processional offering. From the paychecks of their working hands, an “over and above” offering of almost $700 was also gathered to give to LSI in their work of caring for young families and new dads! In blessing and sending these gifts home with Robert and Deb, we thank them and all LSI workers for the work their “hands” do to care for others and for the joy of being partners with them in doing God’s Work with Our Hands.