mission also hosted two special guests, singer Shauna
Chanda, who performed at the State
University of New York at Stony Brook (SUNY), and Columbine mother,
Beth Nimmo, mother of Columbine victim Rachel Scott, who spoke at SUNY
and at a primary school in Harlem.
Among the several songs she performed, Shauna sang a new tune written by Taylor Mesplé recorded especially for the victims of the September 11th tragedy titled "Can You Hear the Voices". Shauna had about three hundred CD’s made with the song on it along with two others, one of which she wrote for her late husband who was tragically killed in an auto accident about a month before the terrorist attack. She brought them with her to New York and gave them away at the college and at several New York fire stations.
Beth Nimmo delivered a powerful address on the life of her daughter that captivated everyone at SUNY and in Harlem as students learned firsthand of her daughter’s deep faith in God and the impact she has made in the world.
President and founder Michael Tamburello recalls the how attentive the young students were in Harlem when Beth spoke. "The youth’s team leader told me afterwards that his kids are usually difficult to control and are easily distracted. But when Beth spoke, he had never seen them so focused. God only knows what impact Beth had on these kids who are exposed to violence daily in one of New York’s roughest neighborhoods."
LFC’s visit to New York left a memorable impact on Jennifer Olivella, a senior at SUNY who organized the coffeehouse style event, shared her heartfelt thanks and appreciation. "…The Columbine Call was a God's send placed strategically along my path for such a time as this. The feedback regarding everything has been positive and everyone enjoyed Beth tremendously. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. It's a wonderful thing to know, that through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we are all family, and you and your team have demonstrated that."
the additional assistance of The King’s College of New York, Campus
Crusade for Christ and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, members
of the team were also involved in street ministry at Ground Zero and
other areas of the city distributing a beautifully designed booklet
prepared by a Christian organization named 911recovery.com
formed shortly after the tragedy to bring healing through discipleship.
Team members utilized their downtime between activities to explore the
city, which for many of them, was their first time.
this year," Tamburello recalls, "I was very concerned, even confused,
why we would be provided the opportunity to help the Columbine victims
with nearly a quarter of a million dollars worth of CDs through the kind
generosity of USA Interactive, who covered much of their manufacturing
costs, and then only sell about a fifth of them. All of us were stunned
at our marginal sales but, beyond all of the marketing analyses, questions
of a more spiritual nature began to enter my heart as time passed. When
September 11th happened, it brought things into perspective again and
it was then that I realized that we reached a reasonable point in time
in our mission where were finished with selling most our remaining inventory.
There is a part of me that truly believes that God already had other things
planned for them all along. It’s funny how things sometimes turn out.
Interestingly, the generosity of USA Video Interactive, located in Mystic,
Connecticut, only about a three hour drive north of New York, resulted
in benefiting a neighboring community."
LFC’s board of directors unanimously agreed that donating the CDs was in everyone’s best interest and thought they would be especially beneficial in the New York’s healing at such a critical time as they were for the Columbine community. With the kind assistance of the generous people at Acme Distribution were the CDs have remained in storage for over six months, pallets of the CDs immediately began their journey across the U.S. to several ministries located at strategic points within the city for distribution. To date, nearly twenty thousand CDs have been shipped to New York City, including a full pallet that went to New York’s Fire Department. The CD’s are being provided at no cost to each person that receives one. LFC is also exploring the best options for getting a remaining inventory of around 5,000 units to the families of the WTC victims directly.
The Columbine Call response to the September 11th tragedy was a mission of the heart that reached out to meet New York’s needs on several fronts. Everyone who joined the team took time off from their personal schedules and jobs, and with an exception to LFC’s guests, covered their own expenses associated with their stay in New York. There was personal commitment and sacrifice in it for everyone that became involved.
looks forward to again to possibly returning to New York next year to
follow up on their mission of healing to America’s greatest city that,
with God’s help, like the Phoenix, will rise again from its ashes. With
the threat of Anthrax, the devastating crash in Queens, which happened
the morning after the last part of the team arrived back in Denver,
and the recent fire at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York
has had its unimaginable share of loss and grief. But a nation that
can continue to prayerfully pull itself together and come to its aid
will play a major role, not only in its economic recovery, but more
importantly, its spiritual and emotional well-being.
LFCNews Staff - Photos: Gregg Gargan
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