Scott & Sarah Luginbill
“The Foundation financially supported many of our programs and activities including: new curriculum for our Confirmation classes, our annual Confirmation Retreat, Baccalaureate Brunch, scholarships for four graduating seniors, Mission Trips for Students and Young Adults, and our two 2017/2018 interns Haven Emery and Lauren Lucas. We are so grateful for the Foundation’s support!”
“This internship has given me a place where I can explore my gifts and put them to good use. It has provided me with a group of mentors that have helped guide me into becoming a leader for my peers and have taught me me how to help youth build a relationship with God.”
“Interning at LLUMC has been an incredible experience to have as a high school student. I got to see what happens behind-the-scenes of the youth group and help plan worship and summer events. Scott and Sarah provided an excellent opportunity to allow me to use my gifts to serve the church.”
Efuremu Nitaga is one of our four 2016 scholarship recipients funded by our Wiggans Fund and our Bruce Fund. Lossiebeth Hudspeth, Hunter Gilbert and Sarah Strother are our other Foundation scholars this year. Many of you know Efuremu, an upstanding young man going to University of North Texas on a band/music scholarship. Thanks to scholarship help from the Foundation’s Bruce Fund and others, he will not have to incur any student debt his first year. Born and raised in a refugee camp in Tanzania for his first 9 years, Efuremu then spent several years in exile in Burundi before he, his parents and his 6 siblings fled the genocide in Rwanda. In 2008, when he, his parents and 3 of his siblings were relocated together to the U.S. as official U.N./State Department refugees, he started 4th grade without being able to speak a single word of English. After two years in ESL classes, family moves led him to attend two different middle schools and three high schools. Every time he began to feel at home, he was uprooted. Out of that emerged a diamond. We are proud Efuremu is our Bruce Fund Outstanding Male Scholarship recipient.
Several years ago I was an accomplished chef. Everything was going well in my life, but I was struggling with arthritis in one of my hips and it was becoming a major problem. I knew many people who had hip replacement surgery without any problems, so I figured it was a simple solution to keep me going. Boy was I wrong! For me, the surgery was completely unsuccessful. One infection after another over several years led to numerous additional surgeries and procedures—eventually resulting in having my artificial hip removed, along with other complications which left me completely disabled. Without my hip, I was bed ridden, without hope of regaining a normal life. Then, the Foundation came to my rescue! They funded a grant that allowed me to secure a special, lightweight, super strong wheel chair to get me out of bed and back on the road again. Today, thanks to the Foundation, you will often see me in the Crosswalk Service. Thank God for the Foundation Jennifer and Shannon Money and the special wheel chair they secured for me!
Thanks to the Lovers Lane UMC Foundation I joined a team of fellow Methodists to explore Syrian Refugee camps in Lebanon. This ten day excursion allowed us to see how organizations are operating as the hands and feet of Christ in a place that is in desperate need of help. We toured villages to identify areas that could use our help, and met Syrian orphans, community leaders, ambassadors, and clergymen—all with stories to share.
With 7,000 nonprofits in Lebanon focused on the Syrian Refugee crisis, we were able to see how we as Methodists could positively impact existing organizations, and look forward to creating and sustaining new partnerships. The most profound take away from this trip was that ALL lives matter—especially family. In Lebanon, what we call family, they call country; they consider their countrymen their family and their neighbors their guests. To Lebanese people, all lives matter—period. Despite what we have heard, they aren’t interested in choosing sides.
I am thankful that Lebanon opened it’s doors and arms to us. Not only did it change my life significantly, but it strengthened my resolve to live a life worthy of sharing. It reminds me that at the end of every political story, every war, and every battle there are real people affected. Now it is time to do my part like my Lebanese friends are doing. I am so grateful to the Lovers Lane Foundation for making this all possible for me.
The Lovers Lane Foundation helped pay the cost of materials for a recent LLUMC mission trip to Haiti that Bryan Shockley and his daughter Anna participated in. Here’s Bryan’s story:
Hurricane Matthew made landfall over Haiti’s Tiburon Peninsula on October 4, 2016. My wife Kathy, daughters Carlyn and Anna, and other members of the LLUMC Haiti mission teams had been communicating via Facebook with dear friends in the hillside village of Yvon and coastal areas. There was tremendous relief upon confirmation of everyone’s safety, but the structural damage was extensive. Plans began to formulate for a team to travel to Yvon between Christmas and New Year’s to repair the roof of the school. After hearing about this community from my family, I was eager to experience it for myself.
Anna was the only teenager on the trip, but since she had recently been to Yvon with the LLUMC team, she was one of the more experienced. Watching her interact with the people of Yvon brought me tremendous joy. The community had no indoor plumbing, electricity, or running water, yet my daughter could not have been more content. For a community with so little, they had so much to give.
We went to Yvon to serve our Haitian brothers and sisters, but it was our team who was served. Prior to the trip, we debated if sending money or a team would be most helpful. The answer was convicting: Yvon’s pastor said that when Lovers Lane teams go to Yvon, the people of the community “see the face of Christ.”
The feeling is mutual. Thank you, Lovers Lane Foundation for your help!
Help us make a difference with other young men and women with a contribution to our Bruce Fund for Youth Ministry or our Wiggans Scholarship Endowment.