Creating Community Through Tragedy

“Serving as Christ would serve,” is a phrase commonly heard at Lutheran Senior Services (LSS). When both Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma created a wave of need, resident and staff members responded asking, “What are we doing to help?”

Jerri Phillips, Service Coordinator for Madison Manor and Vernon Heights, Lutheran Senior Services Affordable Housing locations, brainstormed ways they could make a positive impact. “I spoke with residents and asked what they thought about the idea of helping out with disaster response,” said Jerri. “The residents responded with an overwhelming desire to provide any relief or aid they could.” Within 24 hours, a donation station and was receiving an overwhelming response.

“Before the disaster response station was set up, many of the residents had expressed feelings of grief and helplessness over their perceived inability to help their neighbors to the South”, Jerri said. “Many had friends and family in the areas affected and they just wanted to do something about it.” Because of this, Jerri was not surprised when some residents came back with donations within an hour of her setting up the donation station. “Once the posters and donation boxes went up, the tone went from helpless to hopeful. The residents were clearly empowered by their ability to make a difference.”

Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma have created a devastating effect. But they have also created an opportunity for people all across America to serve as Christ would serve. Whether through donations or prayer, together we rebuild and regrow.

If you would like to help those in need as the residents of Madison Manor and Vernon Heights have, please reach out to the Red Cross at