Annual Report 2017 – Lafayette Urban Ministry

A Letter from Joe Micon, LUM Executive Director

How pleased we are to present to you, on the front cover of the 2017 Annual Report, “A Prayer for LUM.” It was recently written and shared with me by Dr. James Davidson and the Rev. Don Nead. Along with LUM’s first Executive Director Rev. Ron Elly and Dr. Thomas Hull, Davidson and Nead were instrumental in the early formation and development of LUM.

These four LUM “Dream Team” members knew then, that in order for LUM to grow and to have a positive impact in the lives of the needy in our community, it must become a place that seamlessly integrates both the spiritual and social aspects of our Christian faith. As LUM begins its 46th year of ministry to at-risk families and children in our community, how powerful it is for us to receive Jim and Don’s prayerful expression of why it is that LUM is here.

The Rev. Clementa Pinckney, who lost his life in June of 2015 along with eight members of his congregation at Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston, South Carolina, once shared in a sermon that “Our calling is not just within the walls of the congregation, but in the life & community in which our congregation resides.”

In eulogizing Rev. Pinckney, President Obama shared that Pinckney’s faith demanded that he perform deeds along with preaching words; that the sweet hour of prayer is supposed to last all week long; that putting faith into action is about more than just individual salvation, it is about our collective salvation; that to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and house the homeless is not just a call for isolated charity, but the imperative of a just society.

In the pages of this Annual Report, I hope you will look beyond all the data and dollars, as impressive as they are, to the deep reservoir of communal faith from which these things flow. I hope you gain a sense of what it is that motivates us as LUM donors, volunteers, staff and board members, to accomplish all the many works of charity and social justice that happen here.

At LUM’s board meeting last month, board secretary Joan Low (Greater Lafayette Stake LDS) shared a story about Dr. King’s final words. As far as anyone knows, the last thing Martin Luther King, Jr. said as he leaned over the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis was to saxophonist Ben Branch. “Ben, be sure you play my favorite song tonight, ‘Precious Lord.’ Play it real pretty.”

Precious Lord, take my hand
Lead me on, let me stand
I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m lone
Through the storm, through the night
Lead me on to the light
Take my hand precious Lord,
Lead me home.

LUM’s work is often difficult. Staff members work long hours. Volunteers always wish they could do more for those we serve. Decisions have to be made every day about how to best allocate limited resources. It is in the midst of these difficulties that so many of us at LUM draw upon our reservoir of faith to help lighten the load.

“Thank you” Jim Davidson and Don Nead for sharing your “Prayer for LUM” and for reminding us yet again of LUM’s mission and what motivates us to accomplish it.

My deepest gratitude to each of you – LUM’s donors, volunteers, staff and board members – for expressing your faith through your special involvement in and support of the Lafayette Urban Ministry.

The 2017 LUM Annual Report is available to review, click HERE.

LUM Mission Statement

Poverty is the greatest thief.

More than depriving a neighbor of food or shelter or warmth, it steals away hope.
While other thieves may take away
the past, poverty steals the future and self-respect.

Lafayette Urban Ministry is in the business of restoring human dignity.

Through voluntary efforts and contributions we give back the hope, the future, and the self respect which all God’s people need and deserve.

Ours is a Christian ministry that welcomes congregations and
people of all faiths.

We give witness to God’s saving
love & prophetic power by
loving neighbors, seeking justice,
empowering the least among us, and renewing the Church’s social ministry.

The 2017 LUM Annual Report is available to review, click HERE.

In 2017, Lafayette Urban Ministry served 5,166 households and more than 3,000 individuals volunteered in a LUM program. Over 1,600 individuals, churches, civic organizations, foundations or local businesses contributed financially to our work.

Please read the LUM Annual Report —learn the facts and figures—and 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.

Thanks again for a terrific 2017 — you’ve made our community a stronger, safer, more fair and just place for everyone.

To read the entire LUM Annual Report including a letter from the executive director, click HERE. Stop by the LUM office if you would like a paper copy.

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