An annual report, by definition is about financial figures and caseload data. It is an important document for a place like LUM. We work hard to be accountable to our many donors and volunteers. But truth be told, for most of us, the numbers will quickly fade and LUM’s many program accomplishments over the past year will soon be forgotten.
That’s why I think Maya Angelou was onto something when she said
“I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
So, as we reflect upon our past year of ministry together, let’s focus, at least for a moment, on some of 2015’s most important emotional highlights…
- How proud Rafaela Lopez (pictured) was to take her oath of US Citizenship on September 4. She was the first ever LUM Immigration Clinic client to earn that privilege. We were moved as she pledged allegiance to her new country for the first time.
- A LUM tax client left our office fighting back tears of joy. Volunteer tax preparer Ann Pellegrino (pictured) had just secured a tax refund for him; and now he could purchase new shoes and clothes for his children.
- How satisfying it was to see the hospitality with which each church and host-site treated their many guests on Jubilee Christmas Saturday.
- Eileen Weiss sang All Creatures of our God & King during an outdoor morning chapel at LUM Camp this summer. All of us, campers and counselors, felt a special closeness to God and His creation.
- After years advocating for Indiana to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, LUM Public Policy Director Susan Brouillette was finally able to report that the Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0 was implemented, granting healthcare to hundreds of thousands of uninsured Hoosiers. Such relief.
- Mariana Paddock (pictured) provided free haircuts for LUM’s homeless clients once a month. You could feel the love and respect she offered as she washed and trimmed each person’s hair. You could literally see the confidence build in each of her “customers.”
- A LUM After School Program student had a volunteer tutor from Purdue—all to himself. I don’t know which was more important, that student’s increased math comprehension or his new found self-esteem.
- Was there anything more enjoyable last year than watching Father Patrick Baikauskas , pastor of St. Thomas Aquinas Center (pictured) gleefully Zumba dancing at Hunger Hike?
- After 21 years of ministry at LUM, Mary Anderson (pictured) retired last year. A reception was held in her honor filled with hugs, well-wishes, laughter and tears. Mary’s many friends and colleagues offered their gratitude for her remarkable career of service.
So please, go ahead and read the pages of this Annual Report. Learn the facts and figures. See what your special friendship and generous support has accomplished and how many children and families were served. Then, take a moment to reflect upon what it was about LUM that evoked feeling in you this year. For me, those feelings will include sincere and heartfelt gratitude — for you. How thankful I am, that through your faithful support of LUM, you made our community a stronger, safer, more fair and just place for everyone.