Wrapping Love Around the World2 min read

Wrapped in Love

Andrea Salid, a 74-year-old mother of seven, found her home severely damaged when Typhoon Bopha swept through her village in the southern Philippines in December 2012. Fierce winds blew the roof completely off of her house and destroyed most of her belongings. “Salamat” (meaning thank you) was spoken again and again by Salid as she told Lutheran World Relief (LWR) worker Lauren Bauer that she would use her quilt to cover herself at night. More than 800 people, many with stories like Salid’s, gathered at the distribution center where Bauer was assisting to receive quilts, baby care kits, and personal care kits.1

Labor of Love

This would not have been possible, in such short order, had hearts and hands that share the Good News of Christ through their labors of love been still. Last fall, 150 youth and adult volunteers from Michigan filled six railroad containers with 122.5 tons of items including 412,710 quilts, 539,898 kits, and 91,122 lbs. of soap which were distributed to more than 720,000 people in 23 countries.

Through a new partnership with the United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD), LWR plans to position quilts and kits near disaster-prone areas for timely distribution following an emergency. Pre-stocking resources in a Philippines warehouse allowed for quick dispersal following more recent emergencies in Southeast Asia. LWR will be able to store materials in up to five additional UNHRD hubs located in Italy, Malaysia, Ghana, the United Arab Emirates, and Spain. LWR’s 2013 goal for quilts alone is to send 500,000 worldwide.

LWR Ingathering and Boxcar Loading

Boxcar Loading VolunteersThis coming fall, members of Michigan District congregations, from all walks of life, will once again join forces for the annual ingathering of everyday items most of us take for granted. These individuals and groups have been busy fundraising, purchasing, gathering, sewing, and packaging quilts and care kits for the 2013 LWR Boxcar Loading that will take place on Wednesday, October 16, 2013 at the Conrail Yard, 2975 Livernois, Detroit, Mich. Prior to the event, 14 collection locations throughout the state and northern Ohio will pack boxes filled with quilts, new soap, and kits into vehicles and then transport them to the train yard. Once there, they will be loaded into railroad shipping containers, soon to make their way to Maryland before being shipped to distribution points worldwide.

If you have any questions about our Michigan District efforts, please contact Pat Schuknecht at 517.552.7218 For information on what items are being collected, please visit Please feel free to order LWR promotional materials for your congregation by contacting LWR directly.

1From the story, “Salamat,” written by Lauren Bauer, Lutheran World Relief’s Creative Services Project Manager.

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About the Author

Patricia Schuknecht has coordinated the Michigan District LWR Ingathering and Boxcar Loading for 13 years and states, “It is a great privilege to be able to continue coordinating this wonderful task.” She currently serves as office manager at Heart of the Shepherd, Howell. She and her husband, Steve, have five children and seven grandchildren.

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