DECEMBER 31, 2016

In 2016 we opened the pantry fifty-one times. 4678 clients were served, representing 8435 family members, including 2272 children. This represented about a 6% increase in participation. The clients may come weekly to receive a bag of food. A bag includes a vegetable, a fruit, soup, crackers, mac and cheese, ramen noodles, tuna, beans, toilet paper, and a snack. Other items available are meat, (once a month), pastries, bread, health and beauty items, and clothing as supply allows.

We receive bread and pastries from Panera and Northeast Community on a weekly basis. The Letter Carriers food drive in May, Judy Mason Thanksgiving baskets, and a Caterpillar Grant for hams to the Central Illinois Food Bank helped us with additional supplies for the pantry. AMELCS received a small Federal Grant, donations from Kim and Sue’s Christmas parties, Thrivent, and Junior Welfare. All were appreciated Donations also included health and beauty supplies and clothing. The knitting group also donated hats for our clients.

Hours of time were given by volunteers from both churches to make this joint venture continue to function to provide help to our clients and their families.

The major source of funding continues to come from both churches and members with designated donations. This year we received a total of $14,677.43 in monetary support. We spent $16,210.24 on supplies for the pantry at local grocery stores and the Central Illinois Foodbank. The negative balance was covered by carry over funds from last year.

Without all the help and support, we wouldn’t be able to continue to operate AMELCA.

Thanks everyone for their continued support!

Respectfully submitted,

Volunteers of AMELCA


Gardening Group

    This is a group of Women and Men from the congregation who come together to plant flowers around the building. Every time you look at the building you can feel the love that has been put into making it so pretty for all to see.


International Health & Development Network (IHDN) Annual Report -2016

Mission Trips:

We sponsored two (28th & 29th) mission trips  to Ghana in 2016 with 30 volunteers, including 5 doctors, 2 nurses, a pharmacist and 2 medical students.   During these trips, the volunteers provided medical care to over 1,900 patients at the IHDN Mission Hospital, including about 60 surgical operations.  Malaria and hypertension were the commonest diagnoses and hernia surgery was the commonest operation performed.

Church service at Agbozume & Christian Leadership training

We participated in church activities at the Agbozume Evangelical Presbyterian Church.   Pastor David Johnson of Hope Church preached during the mission trip in July.  He also held Christian  Leadership workshop for  Christian Leaders in the community.

Celebration of  20th anniversary

We celebrated the 20th anniversary of IHDN  in the courtyard of the Mission Hospital.  Over 500 visitors, including  several dignitaries, friends and families across the world joined us in this celebration.  This was another opportunity to formally interact with the community and acknowledge what God has used us to accomplish over the years.

Road Construction and Water Supply to Worgbato

We completed the construction of the 0.75 mile road  leading to the elementary school at  Worgbato at a cost of approximately $10,000.   Before this road was built,  the only way to get to the school was through a foot path that meandered through sandy coconut fields.  It is the same foot pathway that leads to the whole village of Worgbato.  We also completed the extension of clean water from a 2 mile connection point to the school at Worgbato at a cost of approximately $8,000.   The school will sell some of the water to the villagers to help them pay their water bill and also support the school.            Hope Evangelical Free Church, Springfield, donated $20,000 towards the road and water projects for Wagbato, and for that we are grateful.

 Update on Construction of  IHDN Staff Apartment & Roads

The columns have been erected on the fifth floor and very soon the beams will be cast for the roofing to be added.   We completed 6 apartment units on the first floor to allow for immediate occupancy.  We thank the First Evangelical Lutheran Foundation, Decatur for their $5,000 donation that helped us to buy additional materials to complete the work on the first floor.  For the period from January to September 2016, we have spent $157,063 on the staff apartment building.   We will continue the raise funds to help pay for the construction of this building.

Feeding of Students and villagers at Worgbato.


We cooked and served  rice, fried chicken and green beans and gravy to over 80 students and villagers at Worgbato.  This was the first chicken meal for the year for most students


Elementary School support and English & Maths enrichment classes at Worgbato

We hosted  Reading and Mathematics classes for about 80 students at Worgbato.   We also donated  desks to the school in  addition to school supplies.

Computer science training, Internet and Server Set up

We held computer science  classes for the hospital staff.  They received training in MS Word, and Excel. For most of the staff,  this was their first time using computers.  We also installed a new server to allow us to adopt a new Electronic Medical Records software for the IHDN Mission hospital.  We repaired a wireless bridge that allowed the hospital  to receive broadband  internet connectivity from 20 miles away.

IHDN Mission Hospital Report – January-September 2016

            Over 27,185 patients were treated at the outpatient clinic, 2,102 were admitted to the wards and 22 deaths were reported.  Over 43% of the outpatients had malaria, followed by upper respiratory tract infection (17%).  We added maternity and delivery services to the work.  At the end of September 2016, seven babies were delivered.   Most of the patients admitted had malaria, septicemia and anemia.  Over 1,142 procedures were performed.  Most of them were wound dressing, suturing of lacerations, hernia repair and hydrocele surgery. Over 70%  of patients who died, were pronounced dead on arrival.  We were able to replace our portable sterilizer, which has helped our surgical operations.  We also introduced an Electronic Medical Records system called Kpal Hospital Management System. 


5th Fundraising Banquet in Springfield


            We hosted the 5th Fundraising banquet at Hope Church, Springfield, IL.  This was attended by over 240 guests.  We were able to raise over $55,000 towards the construction of the staff apartment.  We thank God for the generosity of His people.


IHDN Mission Hospital Financial snapshot – January–September 2016

Amount paid to Hospital by NHIS                    $250,536

Outstanding debt owed by NHIS to hospital       $95,736

Hospital Expenditure -                                       $257,018

Overdue Bills to Pay Hospital suppliers              $84,108


Container Shipped to Ghana.

We shipped a 40ft container to Ghana from Springfield on November 3, 2016.  We would like to thank the Hospital Sisters Mission Outreach  for the donation of Medical Supplies.  We also thank In His Service, Memorial Medical Center and Passavant  Hospital.  We thank Midwest Mission Distribution Center for the  Storage & Shipment of  the Container.  We thank the Hope Church members and other volunteers who came to load the container.  


LWR Quilters


In 2016 the First Lutheran quilters donated to LWR:


100 quilts

100 school kits

100 persona care kits

$660.00 from Noisy Offering to pay for total shipping costs


The First Lutheran quilters meet each Thursday morning, beginning at 9:00 A.M. and stopping at 11:30 A.M.  We gather on the lower level of the church across from the Fellowship Hall.  If the word "quilting" scares you please be assured that there are many steps to making these quilts and we divide the duties.  None of the work of creating the quilts requires expert quilting skills.  Please join us if you are interested.


The quilters work schedule begins at the end of October each year, once our donations have been blessed and are on their way to warehouses in Minnesota.  Our 2015 quilt and kit donations eventually went to Thailand and Pakistan and now we can look forward to tracking our 2016 donations.


We started preparing for school and personal care kit making in mid-July.  School supplies go on sale at that time and shopping becomes a top priority.  All of the items that go into the making of the school kits and personal care kits were purchased at that time.  The beginning of October the quilters gathered to assemble kits so that that the kits would be ready to ship along with the quilts the last week-end of October.


During our worship service, on the third Sunday in October, we had a blessing of the quilts and kits.  At that service we also collected a Noisy Offering.  Shipping costs are not cheap and the cost for our 100 quilts and 100 school kits and 100 personal care kits in 2016 would be $660.00.  LWR only asks each congregation participating to give a donation of $25.00 or more to help cover the shipping costs.  This year Pastor Park sent out the best Noisy Offering collectors ever....THE KIDS.  They took their job very seriously and by the time the pennies and nickels and dimes and quarters and paper was all counted, over one thousand dollars had been offered up.  We only needed $660.00 this year so the balance of the money will be used to purchase more materials to assist our budget and keep this mission going.  To all the kids that helped with the Noisy Offering we say "THANK YOU'.


Remembering all those who donate to this ministry by giving time and materials and money and prayers we send a very big 'THANK YOU' to you as well!!!


Respectfully submitted,

Carol Broeking

Story Book Project

First Lutheran took part in the Storybook Project at the Decatur Correctional Center again in 2016. Volunteers from First Lutheran are Karen Wenger, Kris Sites and Marilyn Oftedal. Lutheran Social Services brings books and inmates pick a book to read to their child A volunteer takes the inmate to a quiet place and the volunteer records them reading the book. It is transferred to a CD. The book and Cd are mailed to the child. There are many stories of how much the children enjoy hearing the voice of Mother, Grandmother or Aunt reading to them. LSSI has requested soft cover books to cut down on postage. Books and monetary donations are always welcome.  If you are interested in volunteering contact Karen, Kris or Marilyn.

Respectfully submitted,

Marilyn Oftedal