Ladies group sends care packages to military


The U.S. Navy service men and women aboard the USS Winston S. Churchill are having a brighter holiday thanks to the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League.

The organization also known as LWML wanted to send care packages to members of the military who would be deployed through Christmas.

Pastor Adrian Krebs of Lord of Life Lutheran Church in North Vernon said the holidays can be difficult for anybody, especially those who are away from their families.

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Nearly 400 care packages were prepared for the crew of the USS Winston S. Churchill DDG 81 by the LWML of Lord of Life Lutheran Church with assistance and support of the Seymour Zone LWML.

Churches in the Seymour Zone are located in Jackson, Jennings, Scott, Lawrence and Washington counties.

LWML member Lin Barnett of Seymour attends Redeemer Lutheran Church and said she helped put the care packages together.

“I went to a meeting where the president of the district, vice president and several other ladies who were the president of their clubs made the decision to do it,” Barnett said.

She said Lord of Life LWML President Diana Krebs and her husband reached out to Chaplain Prince, who is a member of the military.

“He helped Diana and her husband figure out the best place to send the care packages,” Barnett said. “They ended up choosing the USS Winston S. Churchill, a destroyer ship with about 400 military personnel aboard.”

Since they’re not going to be home for Christmas, they thought it would be nice to make something special for each one of them.

“It worked out really well, and the care packages went out to all those sailors,” Barnett said. “The packages included snack items such as Lorna Doone shortbread cookies, Cheez-It snack crackers and peanut butter crackers.”

Each sailor also received one pair of high-quality black socks, lip balm, powder, toothbrushes, toothpaste, chewing gum, mints and prayer cards.

“There’s a company called Faith Comes by Hearing, and they furnished Military BibleSticks for the care packages,” Barnett said. “They are worth about $25 each, and the company did that on their own.”

Each personal player BibleStick included batteries and earbuds and came preloaded with the audio drama New Testament and selected Psalms for men and women serving our country.

Barnett said even though some are not involved with a church, a lot of people refer back to the Bible at Christmastime.

“It helps them get through times when they feel alone and are away from their families,” she said.

“A majority of local pastors involved in the project wrote a devotional booklet, too,” Barnett said. “So the men and women getting the packages could read one devotion each day through the first part of January about Christmas, Jesus and more.”

She said 10 or 11 churches contributed money to help pay for some of the items. Besides the Military BibleSticks that were furnished, LWML covered the rest of the cost.

“The care packages were mailed out in 12 boxes around the end of November or first part of December,” Barnett said. “They had to be mailed to the base in Virginia and then delivered to the ship out wherever they were in the ocean.”

Barnett said she hopes the care packages will cheer up the ones who received them and hopefully make it feel more like Christmas.

“It was one of the nicest things as a group of Lutheran churches that we’ve done,” Barnett said. “I think this is the first time we’ve ever tried to do something like this, and it has worked out really well.”

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