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GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

 

Meeting Summary 10.13.19


#acomfortdogiscoming

 

 

1.            Team Building: I shared a lyric from Danny Gokey’s song, Haven’t Seen it Yet, that had meaning for me as we wait for our dog. He sings, “Your promises are just up ahead.” I was so uplifted as I listened and was reminded of God’s faithfulness as we pursue our dream of becoming home to an LCC K-9 Comfort Dog. I then read from a long-forgotten copy of “If a Dog were your Teacher” followed by an update of which dogs from our LCC training class have not yet been placed. Lastly, I shared from “Seeking What’s Already Happening” Joining Jesus on His Mission Ch. 7 (attached)

 

2.            Ministry Moments and Myth Busting: The question was asked, “How have you been enjoying people?” following last month’s team building focus. Susan Prier’s touching encounter with Lina, a woman who had just lost her husband, was a perfect example of the prompting in John 4:35. Laura shared an opportunity she had to share the ministry with a teacher. Pastor Ron and I had a chance to talk up our ministry with an enthusiastic passenger on our flight home from Florida.

 

3.            GSLC Ministry Plan: I am working on adding “oversight” to our plan. I will be contacting three more people to serve on this “board” in addition to Pastor Ron and myself, which would meet 2-3 times a year.

 

4.            Caregivers/Handlers:

 

a.    I will be sending out an email this month to our caregiver and handler applicants and those who are interested in being visitation partners re: a monthly training day and time.

 

b.    We read through the LCC handout “Ministry Partners” (with the help of Joel’s stellar context clue skills), clarified the information, and asked questions which I could (mostly) answer. This role is so key and everyone on the team needs to be in-the-know.

 

5.            Central Valley affiliates: Since our three affiliates will be at the West Coast Region conference Oct. 26-27, we did not meet in anticipation of collaborating while we’re in Las Vegas. Please pray for Sue Baldwin and me in our travels and experiences while representing Team Turlock. Prayers for Deb Rider and Team Stockton as they interview on Oct. 18.

 

6.            Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

 

a.    Budget: Tammy gave me an account balance of $25,662 which is exactly what she gave me on Sept. 5. I have asked her to get back to me on this as I don’t think it includes the nearly $600 in BBQ credit card sales.

 

b.    Vehicle donation: Pastor Ron reported that Barbara Ring has donated a 2000 Nissan Maxima to the church, specifically for our ministry. Jim Bollinger is having it checked out by a mechanic: so far, so good. It will need to pass its smog test next. We appreciate Debbie Koftinow’s help in locating someone to help with registration. It will be kept in the church garage as we make decisions regarding its usefulness for our ministry.

 

c.    Monthly Pledges: Pastor Ron shared with us that a letter has been sent out to everyone who has been supporting Valerie and Togo Lutheran Mission. Since Valerie is retiring it was suggested in the letter that donors could redirect their donations to the Comfort Dog ministry. The opportunity to make a monthly, quarterly, or yearly contribution to our ministry will also be offered to the congregation at large.

 

d.    Groomer: Susan Prier and I met with Brooke at All Paws Pet Salon on Friday, Sept. 13. We went over the requirements for an LCC Golden and she was very comfortable with them, even the nails!! She is offering to groom our dog at a 50% discount. (Her regular price is $40-50 per visit, depending on the dog’s size.) Susan emphasized that a generous tip will be important!

 

e.    Social Media: Jamee reported on her upcoming series of Facebook and Instagram posts, highlighting the teams in our West Coast region, emphasizing their connections with us and our greater LCC family. I will be providing her with some photos from the upcoming regional conference for future posts. She is also helping us to get more mileage out of Laura’s “K-9 Korner” articles by posting them with pictures from some of our neighboring affiliates. She could still use a helper or two.

 

f.     Public Relations:

 

                                          i.    Rob Geiger will accompany me to speak with Dave Williams, TPD Chaplain, about our ministry as soon as I can set it up. As a Rotarian, Rob will be looking for a date when we can share the excitement of our upcoming ministry as well as ways to partner with them in their community work at a future meeting.

 

                                         ii.    I attended the September “Coffee with Chief.” Although I wasn’t there in PR-mode, it was interesting to listen to his account of the recent false active shooter incident at THS. As he discussed how scared the students were, I thought that if we had our dog, we could have been a presence in the following days to help the students and staff process their experiences.

 

                                        iii.    Please feel free to suggest topics or questions to Laura for her bi-monthly “K-9 Korner” articles.

 

g.    Extraordinary Dogs: We will publicize this book, which is coming out on October 22, including Aaron-Cover Boy-Comfort Dog. Many LCC dogs are also profiled.

 

h.    Other: (including things I forgot to mention)

 

                                          i.    Sue Baldwin completed a ministry directory. It will be printed and distributed to you. (I completely forgot to get this out so I’m including it in these notes again.)

 

                                         ii.    Thank you to Danna and Beth for working on the donation letters from our BBQ fundraiser. This was a very important follow-up which required time, thoughtfulness, and effort. They were a great team!

 

                                        iii.    Judy Ranheim indicated that Good Shepherd will be an election poll site for both the 2020 primary and general elections. In the past the poll workers have donated their “wages” to Togo Lutheran Mission @ $500 per election. She would like to suggest that those $$ are directed to the Comfort Dog ministry next year. We all voted “aye!” Thank you, Judy, for thinking of our ministry!

 

                                       iv.    Thank you, Susan Hall, for providing us with delicious cookies!!

 

 

 

7.            Devotion: “Worth the Wait” Our Daily Bread – Oct. 2019

 

The story of Hachiko, who faithfully waited for his owner every day at a Tokyo train station inspires us to remain faithful in our wait for our Comfort Dog in order to “serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven.” 1 Thess. 1:3, 9-10.  (And I’m told there’s a movie!)

 

8.            Next meeting: Sunday, November 10, 12:30 pm.

 

 

GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry Meeting

 

#acomfortdogiscoming

 

Our next monthly meeting will be on Sunday, November 10, 12:30 pm in the Fellowship Room. Along with the regular agenda, Sue Baldwin and Pam will report on the recent LCC K-9 Comfort Dog West Coast Region Conference at Faith Community Lutheran Church-Las Vegas, NV-home church of Lois Comfort Dog. For the latest K-9 ministry news, check out our church website: gslct.org>Ministries>Comfort Dog. Please see our display in the Social Hall for ministry information and puppies-in-training placement updates. ~Pam Youngdale, Top Dog/Coordinator


 


GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

 

Meeting Summary 9.8.19

 

 

 

  1. Team Building: “An Inefficient Effective Strategy” Joining Jesus on His Mission Ch. 6 (attached)

  2. Ministry Moments and Myth Busting: In Lisa’s absence, I shared a remarkable response she received on her Facebook page to a dog-related post from a formerly skeptical GSLC church member. Rob Gibson shared Julia’s random encounter with Team Stockton, Team Micah, and me at our monthly Top Dog meeting . . . in Manteca! It was a well-timed God appointment! More positive t-shirt comments were revealed.

  3. GSLC Ministry Plan: We need to add “oversight” to our plan. Discussion followed about the need for accountability and transparency with our budget. Joel brought up important questions regarding our budget, projections for our yearly needs, and start-up ministry costs. I would like three more people on this “board” in addition to Pastor Ron and myself, who would meet 2-3 times a year.

  4. Caregivers/Handlers:

    With the help of Kay Wallace, caregiver/handler binders were assembled to assist with our training. I will be sending out an email to this team and to ministry partners to schedule our monthly training meeting. “Ministry Partner Guidelines” were distributed to everyone. Please read in preparation for next month’s meeting. You will find extra copies on our display table in the Social Hall.

  5. Central Valley affiliates: We met on September 1. Topics included attention to when and how many fundraisers are scheduled during the course of the church calendar year, confirmation of caregiver/handler teams with Dona Martin - K-9 Director, and the process of when a handler misses initial LCC K-9 training. We also shared some of the concerns and challenges of sending team members to regional conferences, especially when distance is large and funds are not.

  6. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. BBQ wrap up: I reported on the all-around success of the “Dog Days of Summer” fundraiser. BBQ Team members shared thoughts, with more input by other Team members. To paraphrase Rob Geiger, “If the biggest concern was whether or not to have guaranteed silent auction bids, then it sounds like a success.” We have an excellent foundation to build on for next year. The group shared other fundraising ideas, however we need to be sensitive and avoid signs of fundraising-fatigue within our congregation.

    2. Budget update: The total in our CD account is over $26,200. This includes $4815.50 from the BBQ and nearly $600 from t-shirt sales.

    3. Monthly Pledges: Pastor Ron will begin this process, where church members can make monthly, quarterly, or yearly donations to our Comfort Dog Ministry. He will also be requesting that the CD Ministry be added as a line item in the church’s “Missions” budget.

    4. Micah Comfort Dog Vesting: Jamee accompanied me. We really enjoyed the Elk Grove welcome for Micah. They were touched by the bandanas we presented to him from our seamstresses, Susan and Joanne. Jamee especially liked the personal video message that was played from LCC President, Tim Hetzner.

    5. Groomer: Susan and I are meeting with Brooke at All Paws Pet Salon on Friday, Sept. 13.

    6. Social Media: Jamee reported on her vision and plans for upcoming posts. She has also been in contact with Jodi (Team Marie, Spokane Valley), who has been very helpful. Jamee would like 2-3 other people to work with her as resources. Please reach out to her if this is something you’d be interested in.

    7. Public relations: Laura continues to collaborate with me and write the “K-9 Korner” articles. Jamee is featuring them on our church FB and Instagram pages. (Please like and share!) Debbie reported on our most recent “Coffee with the Chief.” His smile while holding his stand-in Police Ministry stuffie was noted. I have followed up with the Housing Director at CSUS and will work to bring Team Micah for a visit. I also followed up with the JROTC instructors at East Union HS, and let them know we’d welcome an invitation to visit again, maybe with our own dog!

    8. Extraordinary Dogs: We will publicize this book, which is coming out in October, including Aaron-Cover Boy-Comfort Dog. Many LCC dogs are also profiled.

    9. Other: (including things I forgot to mention as we went into overtime!)

      1. Sue Baldwin completed a ministry directory. It will be printed and distributed to you.

      2. Aaron, Reuben, and Micah visited Sierra Middle School, Stockton, which lost a science teacher to the tragic dive boat fire last week off the coast of Santa Barbara.

      3. Danna and Beth will be working on getting out the donor letters from the BBQ this week. Anyone that we have record of will be thanked for their donation of food, wine, silent auction items, decorations, and monetary donations.

      4. Sue Baldwin and I will attend the LCC West Coast Region K-9 Conference, hosted by Team Lois, Faith Community Lutheran Church, Las Vegas, Oct. 26-27. We are paying our own airfare, $252 each; the ministry will pay for our hotel room for two nights, approximately $364 total. (This really stressed me out in deciding how to pay for this. The need for “oversight” –see #3 - became very real.) We are staying an extra day to participate in events and visits surrounding the two-year anniversary of the mass shooting at the music festival on the Las Vegas Strip. I’m so grateful that Sue will attend with me.

      5. Go Team Stockton! Rock your Skype interviews on Oct. 18!

  7. Devotion: “A Heart of Gratitude” There are blessings all around us. “We need to smile, stay positive, adapt, and do a little more wagging!” Pawz and Pray (2014) Thanks for the inspiration, Laura Gibson! J

  8. Next meeting: Sunday, October 13, 12:30 pm.

 

 

 

 

 


GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 8.4.19

 

  1. Team Building: “Relentless” The effort required to prepare for our dog and build this ministry can seem relentless at times. With the recent mass shootings, we have to relentlessly not get sucked into hopelessness! The world we are living in is proof of the real need for our K-9 ministry.

  2. Ministry Moments and Myth Busting: We received a $500 donation from Forrest White, who lost his bid last fall for re-election to the Turlock City Council. Amazingly, he designated our ministry as one of the non-profits to receive left over campaign funds! We are thankful to have a community friend like Forrest! A few t-shirt conversations were shared. I was able to dispel a few “myths” at the K-9 conference, mainly things I heard from other attendees and needed to confirm!

  3. Caregiver/Handler applications submitted:

    Linda & Dennis Buie, Heidi & Joel Loesche. We continue to pray for a third caregiver applicant. It needs to be someone who is willing to take on the task if chosen, but not devastated if they aren’t. I was able to discuss our situation with Dona Martin, Director of K-9 Ministries and Top Dog Trainer. She was positive about our progress as a team and stated our process will not be slowed. We should not stop seeking another applicant, however.

    Handler applications submitted:

    Sue Baldwin, Ed Juncker, Julia Gibson, Jim & Sandie Knapp, Bill & Traci Preuss, Pastor Ron & Pam Youngdale

  4. Central Valley affiliates: Actually, ALL of the West Coast Region affiliates in attendance were able to meet on Thursday evening at the conference. It was great to hear updates from each team. We have an awesome group to work with! Jamee Bollinger will accompany me to the Vesting Ceremony of Micah Comfort Dog in Elk Grove next Sunday. He will have some smart new bandanas to add to his wardrobe, thanks to the sewing skills of Susan Prier and Joanne Alvernaz.

  5. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. 2019 K-9 Comfort Dog National Conference: Pastor Ron and I reported our highlights. Some of the information we gathered will be used for training at future ministry meetings. (See attachment)

    2. T-shirts: Susan Hall is still distributing them. Our final count was 90! That’s a lot of fund-AWARENESS-raising!

    3. Groomer: Susan Prier has contacted All Paws Pet Salon on Center Street. Once we have more information from LCC about grooming requirements, Susan and I will pay them another visit.

    4. Social media: Jamee continues to take care of our weekly Facebook and Instagram posts. A frequent question I heard at the conference was “Do you have a social media person.” My answer? With a big smile, “Do we ever!!”

    5. Public Relations: Fan-girl Laura Gibson reported on her (many) encounters with the dogs at the LCMS National Youth Gathering. Look for her insights in her weekly “K-9 Korner” articles. Debbie Koftinow and I will be at the next “Coffee with the Chief” on August 17. Feel free to wear your t-shirt and join us. Heidi Loesche and I will be making a presentation at both worship services on August 25 about our May visit with Team Aaron to comfort students at East Union HS. (Sharing our stories was another emphasis of the conference.)

    6. “Dog Days of Summer” BBQ & Silent Auction: The committee met on July 31 to nail down details: menu, price, décor, etc. Tickets went on sale today, Aug. 4. Susan H, Paula, and Debbie K volunteered to sell the tickets each Sunday. Jeanne needs auction items no later than Aug. 18. Linda Jahn has applied for a Thrivent $250 VISA card. (Update: it was approved!) Micah Comfort Dog and handlers will be our special guests. The committee will meet again after today’s meeting and again on Aug. 18.

    7. Other:

      1. Sue Baldwin shared a first draft of a team directory. She will make adjustments and revisions.

      2. If our CA Comfort Dog teams are invited, we may be asked to assist in Gilroy. I will be letting the team know if that occurs.

      3. There is the possibility of another fundraiser when the book (with cover boy Aaron), Extraordinary Dogs, is released in October.

  6. Devotion: “Stay Positive” Phil. 4:8 “God graciously created dogs to outweigh the negativity in our lives. Their presence is a reminder that God is good. Focusing on God’s goodness and counting our blessings will result in a peaceful and positive mindset.” Pawz and Pray

    So Team, let’s be relentlessly positive!

  7. Next meeting: Sunday, September 8, 12:30 pm.

 

 


GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 7.14.19

 

 Team Building: “Could It Be This Simple?” See attachment

  1. Ministry Moments and Myth Busting: Jamee and I shared some hit and miss experiences while wearing our t-shirts. Bring rumors and ministry misinformation/myths to our meetings so they can be openly addressed.

  2. GSLC Ministry Plan: no revisions at this time

  3. Caregiver/Handler applications submitted:

    Linda & Dennis Buie, Heidi & Joel Loesche. We continue to pray for a third caregiver applicant. It needs to be someone who is willing to take on the task if chosen, but not devastated if they aren’t. I will be discussing our situation with the powers that be next week at the conference. The Lord will provide! Gen. 22:14

    Handler applications submitted:

    Sue Baldwin, Ed Juncker, Julia Gibson, Jim & Sandie Knapp, Bill & Traci Preuss, Pastor Ron & Pam Youngdale

  4. Central Valley affiliates: Our meeting on Friday was helpful and encouraging. Micah Comfort Dog was a good boy, aside from the napkin he tried to eat! I shared with the team some of the highlights gleaned from our meeting. (Pastor Ron should be happy to hear that our CD will be in attendance at his weekly staff meeting!) We will be receiving a formal invitation to Micah’s August 11 vesting service. Jamee will accompany me. Let me know if you’d like to come along. I have room for two more. Susan Prier will contact Joanne Alvernaz about making some bandanas for Micah as a welcome gift from our ministry.

  5. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. Fundraising:

      1. Susan Hall reported 52 t-shirts were sold in our recent fund-awareness-raiser. The shipment arrived last week, but there was an error (on the part of the printing company). We are hoping to have the replacements by next Sunday. Susan and Jeanne Hardin will distribute them. Side note: I’ve had three people request to order shirts since we placed our order. Do I see another order sometime in the future?

      2. Susan Prier has a recommendation for a local groomer from her groomer. Thank you Debbie Koftinow for your confirmation. I will be requesting grooming information from LCC so Susan can go over our specific Golden Retriever requirements with them. Remember, we want a REALLY good groomer!

      3. Jamee Bollinger gave us a history of her social media postings and a view into the future. She would like two more people to work with her. According to Team Micah, the importance of social media cannot be over-stressed.

      4. The date is set for our “Dog Days of Summer BBQ” fundraiser. Traci & Bill Preuss, Susan Hall, and Jeanne Hardin are “unleashed” and planning for an all-church event after the second service on Sunday, August 25. Tickets will be $15 with all proceeds going to our team’s travel, training, and dog supplies. I think we should try to get EVERYTHING donated!

    2. Public relations: No update. I am going on vacation (!) and will pick up with this in August.

    3. Other:

      1. I shared the need for a GSLC Comfort Dog Ministry Directory. Thank you Sue Baldwin for volunteering to create one for us. (Traci will especially appreciate this!)

  6. Devotion: “Lincoln’s Pockets” Romans 15:2 Even the great Abraham Lincoln needed encouragement! We’re at our best when we encourage others with our words, with our actions, with our presence. Our Daily Bread – August 2019.

  7. Next meeting: Sunday, August 4, 12:30 pm. This departure from our usual second Sunday is due to the August 11 Vesting Service.

     If you think of any other questions or concerns you’d like to me to follow up on at the LCC K-9 Conference, you can text 209-404-4816 or email me. I’ll be in Comfort Dog “heaven” July 24-26. Blessings! ~Pam


GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 6.9.19


  1. Team Building: By promoting our LCC Comfort Dog ministry in the community (and GSLC), we will be asked questions, including why our church is doing this when there might be “easier” alternatives. These will be our TEACHABLE moments!

  2. Ministry Moments: I was able to give copies of our new brochure to JoLynn DiGrazia of Westside Ministries. JoLynn would like to have our dog visit when they do their summer camp next year. I shared the vacationing Jamee Bollinger’s workplace CD conversation. Danna Shipman’s insurance agent is interested in updates about the ministry. Peter Buie has been asked about the ministry while wearing his t-shirt (per mom).

  3. GSLC Ministry Plan: Add Memorial Day observances at Turlock Memorial Park and Denair Cemetery, and National Cancer Survivor’s Day at Emanuel Cancer Center.

  4. Caregiver/Handler applications submitted:

Linda & Dennis Buie, Heidi & Joel Loesche. We continue to pray for a third caregiver applicant. The Lord will provide! Gen. 22:14

Handler applications submitted:

Sue Baldwin, Ed Juncker, Julia Gibson, Jim & Sandie Knapp, Bill & Traci Preuss, Pastor Ron & Pam Youngdale

  1. Central Valley affiliates: I met with St. Andrews, Stockton, Top Dog, Deb Rider on June 8. They are down to one caregiver and in need of more handler applicants. It is good to have a colleague like Deb to share the joys and challenges of coordinating our churches’ CD ministries. We need to be in prayer for them and also for Team Elk Grove as they train and bring home their dog at the end of June.

  2. Visitation report: I explained how GSLC was invited to assist as ministry partners when Team Aaron, Napa, was invited to visit with JROTC students at East Union HS, Manteca after a classmate’s tragic death in a car accident. What an opportunity for Heidi Loesche and for me to work alongside handler Linda Melsheimer and Aaron at a public high school. We went on to tell about the learning experience, ministering, and our personal highlights. We felt grateful to be able to assist with this visit.

  3. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. Fundraising:

      1. We sold 40 t-shirts mainly to team members, at cost, in May. For our second round, at $25 each, we have sold 22 as of June 9. We are taking orders until June 23. With a goal of at least 36 orders, our profit would be approximately $9 per shirt. Thanks to Susan Hall for overseeing this and for the Hardin’s “Mutt Lynch” wine basket, which will be randomly awarded to one lucky t-shirt purchaser. (FYI: The wine is their “Unleashed” chardonnay – cute?)

      2. On May 17 the Kiwanis Club of Greater Turlock awarded our ministry a $500 donation. I wasn’t soliciting donations when I spoke to their group in April, just informing them of the ministry with the desire to work with them on future events, so it was a very nice surprise! Tell President Larry DeBora “thanks” when you get a chance.

      3. There is still interest in an all-church BBQ fundraiser “Dog Days of Summer.” We discussed some potential dates later in August. I will check with Pastor Ron about reserving a spot on the church calendar. Breaking News!! Traci and Bill Preuss have volunteered to head up the food part. Jeanne Hardin will help coordinate raffle baskets. Stay tuned on this!

    2. Vet & Groomer: No update at this time, other than after observing the “grooming” session at the recent regional conference, our team is in agreement that we will need a REALLY good groomer!

    3. Public relations:

      1. Jamee Bollinger, LCC K-9 “Top Fan,” continues to post weekly on Facebook and Instagram. Now that she is done with the current pups-in-training focus, she has ideas for new posts going forward. She has also written a draft outline for the vision of our social media posts.

      2. Laura Gibson, youth liaison, has been busy writing for the “K-9 Korner” in our church News & Notes. Her bi-monthly articles are intended to inform and educate our congregation about some of the fundamental concepts and clear up confusions about the CD ministry. Laura has responded to three questions so far. She is going to include her email address in the future so people can contact her with questions for upcoming articles.

      3. I’m in charge of articles re: team meetings, fundraisers, and information for our News & Notes and website. I’m also helping with ideas for the Sunday worship projection slide loop and announcements.

      4. I attended “Coffee with the (Turlock Police) Chief” on April 20 and was able to share about our ministry with the Chief and about 25 community members who were there to informally discuss concerns. I definitely had the most positive news to share! A few people came up to me afterwards to request a brochure, and I was also able to also give our Chief a brochure about the LCC K-9 Police Ministry. He asked me to bring him some additional brochures, which I did the following week.

      5. Twenty members of our team wearing our new team shirts , including all of our caregiver and handler applicants, attended the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog West Coast Region Conference at St. John’s, Napa on May 11. There were five dogs, including Marie and Micah, pups-in-training. Our first session on “Faith Telling” really set the foundation for our day: It’s not about the dog. It’s about Jesus and who He is to us! There were breakout sessions specifically for expecting teams like us including teamwork, communication, and transitioning once we have our dog. We were also able to observe handler and dog training, grooming, massage (the dog’s!), and even playing. I was so encouraged that most of the conference attendees were able to engage and debrief at my house the following Friday evening in our backyard with delicious beverages and snacks. Fun group!

    4. Other:

      1. The ministry has received two more donations – one more in memory of Emma Kroeker ($100) and one from Carol Barnes ($50).

  4. Devotion: “The Lord Will Provide” Genesis 22:14 God tested Abraham’s faith, and he proved to be faithful. We thank the Lord for His provision. We ask for His help to trust that He will provide (caregivers, funds, supplies, opportunities . . .) even when it seems we’ve been waiting for so long. Our Daily Bread – May 11, 2019

  5. Next meeting: Sunday, July 14, 12:30 pm. Blessings! ~Pam

 

 

 

 

 

 

K-9 Comfort Dog

 

Fund-AWARENESS-Raiser

 

 

 

Now through June 23 we are accepting orders for our official GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry T-shirt. The cost is $25 and all proceeds will go to the ministry for team training and travel, and supplies for our dog. However, these shirts have an even higher purpose than raising funds. By purchasing and WEARING one of our shirts in PUBLIC, you will be bringing AWARENESS to our community and hopefully ENGAGING in conversations about Comfort Dogs, Good Shepherd, and our mission to bring mercy, compassion, and God’s presence to Turlock and beyond.

 

 

All orders are automatically entered into a drawing for a “Mutt Lynch Winery” basket donated by Tom & Jeanne Hardin. See Susan Hall or Pam Youngdale in the Social Hall after our worship services to place your order or you can download an order form below. Thank you for your support! -Pam Youngdale

 

 


 Download Order Form Here

 

 

 

GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 4.14.19

 

  1. Team Building: “Doing mission accelerates our understanding of mission.” (See attachment)

  2. Ministry Moment: We viewed a 2018 video produced by Team Aaron of some of their ministry moments. Pam shared how hearing Romans 15:4-6 on K-LOVE was teaching her about patience. Jeanne Hardin also shared about her autistic grandson’s amazing experience with Aaron at our 2017 church picnic.

  3. GSLC Ministry Plan: Add the annual Kiwanis Christmas Shopping event for children in need, with Larry DeBora as our contact.

  4. Caregiver/Handler applications submitted:

    Joel & Heidi Loesche, Dennis & Linda Buie (primary), keep praying for one more!

    Handler applications submitted:

    Sue Baldwin, Ed Juncker, Julia Gibson, Jim & Sandie Knapp, Bill & Traci Preuss, Pastor Ron & Pam Youngdale

  5. Team Aaron visit: Several positive insights on the March 10 visit were shared. The Q&A was informative!

  6. Central Valley affiliates: Pam met with the Elk Grove Top Dogs on April 13. They are set for training and bringing their dog home June 28. The tentative date for their vesting service is Sunday, August 11. Stockton (not present) is still in need of handler applicants and one more caregiver applicant.

  7. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. Fundraising: Tom Hardin shared about his daughter’s dog-themed Sonoma County winery, Mutt Lynch, and having a “Dog Days of Summer BBQ”, possibly with wine tasting, raffle items, etc. Definitely something to explore as an annual fundraising event. Lisa Mackenzie-Miller will be working with Linda Buie on team t-shirts which will also evolve into a fundraiser.

    2. Vet & Groomer: Susan Prier explained that as soon as we know our date for bringing home our dog she will contact Dr. Santos’ office to set up the first appointment. We will need to look into pet health insurance. No leads on a groomer yet.

    3. Public relations:

      1. Everyone received one of our new affiliate-in-process brochures to give to someone in our community.

      2. Pam met with our youth group on April 7 to educate, elicit their ideas, and encourage their involvement in the ministry. She plans to return soon to follow up with them. She also asked Laura Gibson to be her liaison with our youth group. Pam and Laura are working on bi-monthly K-9 informational articles for our weekly News & Notes.

      3. Pam reported on her April 12 Kiwanis presentation, what she learned from the experience, and some of the questions she was asked. The team encouraged her to continue preparing the community while we await our Comfort Dog.

      4. Pam will attend “Coffee with the (Turlock Police) Chief” on April 20. Other community possibilities were shared by the team, which Pam furiously jotted down! Pam will meet with Rob Geiger to plan for future presentations.

      5. Twenty members of our team, including all of our caregiver and handler applicants, will attend the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog West Coast Region Conference at St. John’s, Napa on May 11. This will replace our regular 2nd Sunday ministry meeting.

    4. Other:

      1. The ministry has received donations in memory of Emma Kroeker, church member and canine friend. (Her son, Randy, is Top Dog at The Rock Lutheran Church in Seward, NE. Pam and Pastor were able to meet him for coffee one morning while he was here in Turlock to chat about CD ministry.)

      2. Pam stressed she is trying hard not to overwhelm team member inboxes, but it is important to read CD email promptly. There is too much information during our building stage, some time-sensitive, to be presented once a month.

      3. Pastor and Pam are registered for the LCC K-9 National Conference, July 24-26, in Northbrook, IL. They will arrive rested (?) from their family vacation in Central Minnesota.

  8. Devotion: “More Than Just Waiting” Acts 1:4-11 As we wait on God, it doesn’t mean doing nothing or impatiently rushing forward. Instead we can pray, worship, and enjoy fellowship (and tell others about our ministry!) as we anticipate what he’ll do. The waiting prepares our hearts, minds, and bodies for what’s to come. Our Daily Bread - May 4, 2019

 

 

Sunday, April 7, 2019


On behalf of the Good Shepherd K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry Team I would like to share some EXCITING news, some GREAT news, and a BIG prayer request.


  • EXCITEMENT! As you know, we are one of three churches in CA expecting an LCC K-9 Comfort Dog. Our close expecting affiliate, Light of the Valley Lutheran Church, Elk Grove, just received their team training dates. They will travel to Northbrook, IL for training June 26-28 and return to Elk Grove with their dog!


  • GREAT news! Nine of our Good Shepherd Comfort Dog Ministry team members have answered God’s call and successfully submitted their handler applications to LCC. A few more are in progress. We can be proud of them for taking this step and making this commitment. Can we use more handler applicants? Yes, but they need to be done soon! Then it will be in LCC’s hands to determine who will fill these positions on our team once our Skype interviews are scheduled and completed.


  • PRAYER request: Our ministry is still in need of two more caregiver applicants. This is our #1 need for prayer at this stage in our goal to be an LCC K-9 Comfort Dog affiliate. Spouses must both apply and, if accepted, attend an additional day of our team’s training in Northbrook. This is a serious commitment. I see the caregivers as being a “team within a team.” They will work together with their schedules to provide safe and secure home environments to a very well trained, hard-working dog where it can rest and play. I can’t even begin to imagine the blessings that are in store for the caregiver team!


Our application will be stalled until we have enough caregiver applicants, and other churches with complete teams may move ahead of us in line for our dog. I am asking that you add this need to your prayers. The continued support, encouragement, and prayers from our congregation are vital. I am trusting that God will supply this ministry’s EVERY need, and that includes PATIENCE!


~Pam Youngdale, Top Dog/Coordinator

 

#acomfortdogiscoming!


Team Turlock K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 3.10.19

 

  1. Team Aaron members were introduced and lunch was provided by our “Food and Fellowship” Partners.

  2. Team Building: “We cannot make the river go back, but we can join Jesus as he leads us forward to build the next span.” (See attachment)

  3. Ministry Moment: Sometimes we overlook opportunities to share about our ministry, but with our growing awareness of our missional eyes, ears, and responses, they will become more obvious to us. Craig guarantees!

  4. GSLC Ministry Plan: Dave Wallace was added as a ministry contact because of his involvement with City of Turlock Emergency Preparedness and HAM Radio Emergency Readiness.

  5. Caregiver & Handler: Pam completed her online handler application and shared tips. The link has been sent out to the entire team. Please fill out and submit as soon as possible. We have one family applying for caregiver, but we need at least two more . . . soon!

  6. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities

    1. Fundraising: We need to start planning for acquiring dog necessities and accessories. A puppy shower and Prime Shine Car Wash coupons have been suggested so far.

    2. Vet & Groomer: Susan Prier met with Dr. Santos who would donate his services for annual routine vet visits, etc. Are there other vets we should check with? Groomers?

    3. Public relations:

      1. K-9 banner is installed on corner flagpole.

      2. New “affiliate-in-process” brochures are ordered.

      3. Pam will present to Kiwanis on April 12.

      4. Rob Geiger has volunteered to help with future presentations.

      5. Cameron Loesche photographed today’s visit and will share photos with Jamee Bollinger.

    4. Other:

      1. The ministry received a $150 donation from Margo Patterson, ASL translator.

      2. Jamee is creating and posting weekly on Facebook (Good Shepherd Lutheran, Turlock) and Instagram (gslcturlock). Her goal is to start working on a vision and planning for future posts. Please “like and share” her posts!

      3. Pam will meet with Linda Buie about Team shirts. (Met 3.12.19)

      4. Pam will open our K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry account at F&M Bank. (Opened 3.12.19)

  7. Devotion: When we’re quick to judge based on appearance or behavior, we may be passing up a golden opportunity to help someone in need. From “Miss Grumpy,” Pawz and Pray

  8. Post-meeting Q&A with Team Aaron Handler, Craig Underhill, and Ministry Partners, John & Pam Foottit (1:45-3:00 pm)  

 

Update 3.12.19

 

The LCC K-9 West Coast Regional Meeting is back on and scheduled for Saturday, May 11. (Good Shepherd has offered to host but that has not been confirmed yet.)

 

Please put this on your calendars, especially if you are a caregiver/handler applicant. Anastasia, the head dog trainer in Northbrook, IL, will be flying out to work with us. It will be an ideal opportunity to learn and connect with our West Coast affiliates, their teams, and of course, their dogs! Stay tuned . . .


The next monthly meeting of Team Turlock K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry is Sunday, April 14, 12:30 pm in the Fellowship Room. And don't forget to check out our display in the Social Hall for ministry information and updates on when and where the current puppies-in-training are placed.


~Pam Youngdale, Top Dog/Coordinator



 

 

 

K9 Logo Small Black SM


Team Turlock K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry

Meeting Summary 2.10.19


 

  1. Team Building: Our missional mindset - Jesus does not give us a mission to do for him. He is on a mission and invites us to come with him. We can do this, with our dog!

  2. I shared a “Ministry Moment” with an Uber driver in Chicago last summer while on my way to the LCC K-9 National Conference. Danna had one with her card-making class. Be on the lookout for these moments as you tell others about our ministry. We’ll be sharing them every month. Imagine what it will be like when we actually have our dog!

  3. Revisions to our GSLC Ministry Plan were shared; revised copy attached.

  4. Caregiver and Handler information was discussed. Pam shared the recent experience of Team Elk Grove’s Skype interviews and tips to help us when we are ready to start submitting our applications. (No fibbing, Rob G!)

  5. A list of “Ministry Partner Opportunities” and who wants to fill them was distributed based on forms that had been returned prior to the meeting; revised copy attached. Let me know if you see any errors or omissions. Some of you already have assignments and some of you will soon!

  6. We went over the “to do” list. For now I could use a “coordinator” for each of the following roles:

    1. Visitation partner

    2. Fundraising

    3. Food/fellowship

These roles had the most sign-ups and it would be a great help to me communication-wise as we move forward. Once our team is more fully formed, I’d like for us to have a directory for the ministry.


We also need to continue recruitment for our team. There are people who just need to be asked. You can see from the list we need more caregiver and handler applicants, especially caregiver.


I revealed a picture of a banner that Linda Buie has designed, which will attach to one of the flagpoles at Main & Minaret. “We are expecting a (logo) K-9 Comfort Dog” banner will be ordered and installed this month.

  1. From our devotion: The greatest “healing” gift we receive from a dog is       unconditional love. Amen?

Next meeting Sunday, March 10, 12:30 pm with Team Aaron Comfort Dog! Lunch will be served. If you’re considering the caregiver or handler roles or just curious, please remain after the meeting for Q&A with Aaron’s handlers, Craig & Karol Underhill and ministry partners, John and Pam Foote. ~Pam Youngdale


Comfort Dog Ministry Upate January 13, 2019

  

When 36+ people turn out for the start of a new outreach ministry, it's worth noting and celebrating! It is also important for me to thank YOU for your patience this past year and for us all to thank GOD for His work in bringing us together to begin our Team Turlock LCC K-9 Comfort Dog ministry. I'm eager to see where God plans to use YOU, YOUR gifts, and where He leads US as a team.

  

For those of you who are considering serving the ministry as a K-9 caregiver and/or handler, you will be receiving a separate email with an update and clarification of information from Sunday's meeting.

  

If you are thinking of serving in a NON-DOG HANDLING capacity, please turn in your "Ministry Partner Opportunities" form to me or the church office as soon as possible. My brain is swirling with a growing to-do list that needs YOU! And if you're still a little hesitant, start small. In my family we call it "baby steps." Pray, trust God, take a step, and I firmly believe He will guide you to your niche in this ministry.

  

Please feel free to communicate at any time your questions, concerns, or clarifications. I'm humbled to be on this journey with you as "neighborhood missionaries", sharing the mercy, compassion, presence, and proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need. ~Pam Youngdale 2 Cor. 1:3-4

 

 

Comfort Dog Ministry Update 12.19.18

 

Pam Youngdale, accompanied by Pastor Ron, was able to attend LCC K-9 Comfort Dog “Top Dog” training at LCC headquarters in Northbrook, Illinois Dec. 3-5. Six other trainees from expecting churches across the nation joined us. We are now (more) equipped to begin building the ministry team we will need to serve our community. (See details below.)

 

 

  • Aaron Comfort Dog along with Craig and Karol Underhill from St. John’s, Napa joined us for worship, fellowship, and our first ever service of “Comfort and Hope” on December 9. It was a great opportunity for more of our congregation and community to interact with Aaron, his handlers, and the ministry. There were many ministry moments, both expected and unexpected!

  • The first official monthly meeting of Team Turlock K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry will be Sunday, January 13, 2019, 12:30-1:30 pm, in the Fellowship Room. If you are interested in being a part of this new, exciting ministry of our church, please plan on attending. You will be updated on the process and progress of the ministry. The various ministry roles (most of which do not involve handling the dog) will be explained and how your gifts can be used “to show the mercy, compassion, presence, and proclamation of Jesus Christ to those suffering and in need” in our community.

     

    ~Pam Youngdale, Top Dog/Coordinator


Sunday Announcement 11.25.18                                                             

     (LCC K-9 Dogs in Training projection slide)

  •  I will attend “Top Dog” training in Northbrook, IL next week, Dec. 3-5, with Pastor Ron. This training will enable me to take our ministry planning to the next level. I will post a report of my training on the church website when I return.
  • For ongoing updates about the ministry, please refer to our church website (gslct.org) for now. There is too much information to regularly put in News & Notes. To make frequent announcements in church is not efficient and is too hit or miss with regard to keeping our church members informed. “Comfort Dog” is listed under the Ministries menu. 
  • If you have already filled out a K-9 Comfort Dog interest form, you will be contacted about our first ministry meeting – sometime in January. There are interest forms available at the information center in our Social Hall. Just complete one, give it to me, or leave it at the church office.

  • Team Aaron (Napa) and Team Reuben (Yuba City) have been very busy since October, especially with the Carr Fire in Redding and Camp Fire in Paradise. (If you follow them on Facebook or Instagram you know what I mean.) We are working on another date for a visit and ministry event but it is not confirmed yet. They are so excited that Elk Grove, Stockton, and Good Shepherd are in line to join them in ministry next year. These teams are definitely stretched right now.

  • Finally, to paraphrase Napa’s Pastor Schmid: “For a creature without opposable thumbs, the Comfort Dogs sure open a lot of doors.” God is preparing us now for the doors that will be opening in our Good Shepherd community and beyond with OUR dog, maybe one of these! (See slide.)  ~ Pam Youngdale, GSLC LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry Coordinator

 

 

 

Comfort Dog Update 10.27.18


Susan Prier, Judy Ranheim, Pastor Ron, and Pam Youngdale attended the LCC K-9 West Coast Region Gathering at St. John’s, Napa, CA, on Saturday, Oct. 20. Current affiliates in Napa, Las Vegas, and Yuba City were represented as well as “expectant” congregations in Elk Grove, Stockton, and another one in Las Vegas. (Two congregations in Washington were unable to attend.)


After an opening devotion by Pastor Mike Schmid (who is allergic to dogs, but appreciates and supports the ministry), teams were introduced and upcoming dates for the 2019 national conference and next year’s regional gatherings were shared.


Throughout the day, we viewed and discussed several videos from last July’s national conference, including featured speakers, K-9 training, and social media best practices. We ended with hearing the experiences of handlers of Team Aaron and Team Reuben at two recent deployments: the Carr Wildfire in Redding, CA, and the one-year remembrance of the Las Vegas, NV, shooting. This sharing and the subsequent Q&A were a highlight for our team.


Team Good Shepherd was blessed by the encouragement of our veteran teams at this gathering, their excitement and support for our future partnership, and the opportunity to engage with our extended Comfort Dog family. The next regional gathering will be on Saturday, April 27, 2019.


Other news . . .


  • The offering from the recent CNH Pastors’ Conference was designated for the two current LCC K-9 Comfort Dog affiliates in the district, Team Aaron and Team Reuben. They chose to share it with the three expectant congregations in the district. We are grateful for their generous gift of $200 for our ministry.

  • The next planning meeting of Central Valley “Top Dogs” (Elk Grove, Stockton, Turlock) is Nov. 3 in Stockton.

  • Pam Youngdale will be attending “Top Dog” training Dec. 3-5, 2018, in Northbrook, IL. This training is the next required step for building our ministry at GSLC.


Finally, a favorite quote from Pastor Schmid’s devotion: “For a creature without opposable thumbs, Aaron Comfort Dog sure opens a lot of doors.” God, guide and prepare us for the doors that will be opening in our Good Shepherd community with OUR dog! ~Pam Youngdale 2 Cor. 1:3-4

 

Comfort Dog Update 10.21.18

 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

 

Pastor Ron, Judy Ranheim, Susan Prier and I will be attending the second LCC K-9 West Coast Region Gathering on October 20 at St. John’s, Napa, CA. We will take part in LCC video-training, team building, and taking the dogs out for ministry events. I have also been given a tentative date for my “Top Dog” training: Dec. 3-5 at LCC Headquarters in Northbrook, IL. Look for next updates here and on our church website, gslct.org>ministries>Comfort Dog. ~Pam Youngdale


Comfort Dogs & Church Picnic Update 9/9/18


The only thing keeping a couple of GOOD dogs away from a GREAT Good Shepherd picnic is WORK and that is exactly the situation on September 30. Team Reuben and Team Aaron have been requested to return to Las Vegas, NV, one year after the horrific shooting that took place there. They will revisit victims, first responders, and personnel from other agencies involved in the aftermath of the deadly tragedy. We can be grateful that their ministry is recognized as being so valuable in aiding the recovery of these people. I will be working with their teams to reschedule a visit to Good Shepherd in the near future.


~Pam Youngdale, GSLC Comfort Dog Ministry Coordinator


 

Coming (Back) to a Picnic Near You!

You can’t keep a couple of GOOD dogs away from a GREAT Good Shepherd picnic! Yes, Aaron Comfort Dog and Reuben Comfort Dog and their teams from St. John’s, Napa and First Lutheran, Yuba City will be joining us for worship and our church picnic on September 30th. This will be another perfect opportunity for you to learn more from the “pros” about the K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry and to ask your questions, all in the presence of two friendly and comforting Golden Retrievers. Please join us in once again welcoming Team Aaron and Team Reuben, our partners in K-9 ministry, to Turlock. We’re PAWSitively excited!

 

~Pam Youngdale, GSLC Comfort Dog Ministry Coordinator


August 11, 2018

 

You’re expecting?? How exciting!! That’s awesome!! I’m so happy for you!! Do you know when?”

 

I can’t think of very many instances when those comments would be the first reactions to Ron and I sharing the news that we are expecting. However, this was the consistent response we received when sharing that we were there at the recent 7th Annual Lutheran Church Charities K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry Conference in Northbrook, Illinois, representing Good Shepherd, an “expectant K-9” congregation in Turlock, CA.

 

Approximately 500 participants and nearly 100 LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs, Kare 9 Military Dogs, and Police Ministry Dogs came together for renewal, sharing, and learning. Pastor Ron and I gathered with handlers and K-9s for two days of inspirational worship, thought-provoking keynote speakers, instructive breakout sessions, and opportunities to engage and network with individuals and teams who make up the ministry across 23 states. This year’s theme, With Me . . . On the Road, was based on the parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10. We were challenged to better understand the question, “Who is my neighbor?”

 

Pam’s highlights of the conference:

  •  Breakout session “God’s Perfect Timing” with Dona Martin was specifically for congregations in the process of starting a K-9 ministry. We reviewed steps in the process, timing, roles and responsibilities, and best ministry practices while waiting for training dates. It was emphasized to us throughout the conference that K-9 training is taking closer to 18 months (rather than 12) and we mark our wait time from the date we submitted our application and deposit: March 2018. (They are very firm on this.)
  •  Another breakout session we attended with timely relevance for Good Shepherd was “Telling the K-9 Story” with CEO and President, Tim Hetzner. As we are asked to speak or to give presentations to various groups in our community, we will need resources to use in telling the K-9 Story. He shared a lot of practical information about preparing and tailoring our presentation based on our audience and the time given to speak, as well as links to assist in preparing PowerPoint presentations.
  • On Thursday night, LCC invited the public to a “Meet and Greet” to give supporters of the K-9 Ministry a chance to meet the K-9s and ministry teams that they follow and have come to love. Over 600 people were welcomed to love on the dogs, and it was truly a sight to behold!

  •  Networking! We met with our West Coast Region right after we arrived Wednesday night. Being one of four new affiliates (Bellevue, WA and Elk Grove, Stockton, and Turlock CA), all in various stages of “gestation,” we appreciated that opportunity for sharing and learning. But there were many other informal chances to share and learn from each other throughout the conference and we took advantage of every minute. And when we weren’t engaged with our own region, we had many meaningful encounters with other ministries across the country, LCC staff, and dog trainers. Sometimes it was hard to catch our breath because everywhere we turned there was another chance to engage and learn and pet (another) dog.
  •  K-9 Ministry in action. While we were conferencing, the Carr wildfire was breaking out in Redding. We observed the communication that was taking place between LCC and Team Aaron and Team Reuben and their possible and then inevitable deployments to minister to evacuees and first responders. Team Reuben flew home that Saturday after the conference and deployed to evacuation centers on Sunday.
  •  I can’t end the highlights without specifically mentioning “the Dogs.” We were surrounded by their unconditional love and comfort for the entire conference. They attended every worship service, conference event, meal, and breakout session with us. If they weren’t resting underneath our conference tables, they were actively working and training during the breaks. And you could definitely tell how much the Hilton Hotel staff loved being able to host this conference, despite the extra work involving fur removal. 

So, what’s next?

  1.  Building our ministry team – There are so many jobs needed, most of which do not require actually handling the K-9. I will be updating the job descriptions with information I received at the conference. In the meantime, if you haven’t filled out an interest inventory, please pick one up in the social hall and return it to me or to the church office. A goal is to begin meeting as a team later this fall.
  2. Collaborating with our region – This is really a “me” job for right now. Attending the conference and getting to know our partners in ministry was a big step in this direction.

  3. Deploying with our Yuba City and Napa teams – Since we are officially in the K-9 family, we will be invited to go as observers to deployments and events, including here in our own community. Learning the ministry by doing the ministry is a powerful teaching strategy. I will be advising you when those opportunities avail themselves to us, such as the recent invitation to deploy to the wildfires, but I’d also like to hear from you about any local events where you think the Comfort Dogs could possibly assist.

 Finally, when Jesus calls us to be “With Me . . . On the Road,” we are to “go and follow” where he leads us. In the K-9 Comfort Dog family we are to trust Him to go and serve WHOM and WHERE he wants us to serve – with the Mercy, Compassion, Presence, and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those who are suffering and in need.

 

So Good Shepherd, are you . . . With Me? ~Pam Youngdale, Coordinator

 

We’re Expecting!

4.19.18

 

That’s how our congregation is referred to in the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Family since we are “expecting” our Comfort Dog next year. Pastor Ron and I were able to be a part of our extended “family” at the recent, first-ever LCC K-9 West Coast Region Conference at Napa Valley College on April 14. In addition to Teams Aaron and Reuben, Team Lois from Las Vegas, and Julia and her trainer from the Northbrook, IL headquarters were in attendance. We got an up-close look into the on-going training and practice that goes into maintaining a successful handler and dog team in addition to viewing educational videos, reviewing documents, and networking with handlers from our region.

 

Please pray for God’s blessing, guidance, and provision for this ministry in our gestational months.

  ~Pam Youngdale, coordinator

 

Praise God, Good Shepherd!

Our application to become an affiliate of Lutheran Church Charities K9 Comfort Dog Ministry is approved and we have paid our deposit. This now places us in line for OUR dog, a 12-18 month wait. What a humbling honor and privilege we have before us to work alongside LCC to bring this “bridge of compassionate   ministry” to our community. Please pray as we now move forward to build our ministry team with the mission of sharing “the mercy, compassion, presence, and proclamation of Jesus Christ” alongside OUR dog! All glory to Him!

                                                                                              ~Pam Youngdale, Coordinator

 

 

GSLC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry
Meeting Summary 9.8.19

1. Team Building: “An Inefficient Effective Strategy” Joining Jesus on His
Mission Ch. 6 (attached)
2. Ministry Moments and Myth Busting: In Lisa’s absence, I shared a
remarkable response she received on her Facebook page to a dog-related
post from a formerly skeptical GSLC church member. Rob Gibson shared
Julia’s random encounter with Team Stockton, Team Micah, and me at our
monthly Top Dog meeting . . . in Manteca! It was a well-timed God
appointment! More positive t-shirt comments were revealed.
3. GSLC Ministry Plan: We need to add “oversight” to our plan. Discussion
followed about the need for accountability and transparency with our
budget. Joel brought up important questions regarding our budget,
projections for our yearly needs, and start-up ministry costs. I would like
three more people on this “board” in addition to Pastor Ron and myself,
who would meet 2-3 times a year.
4. Caregivers/Handlers:
With the help of Kay Wallace, caregiver/handler binders were assembled
to assist with our training. I will be sending out an email to this team and
to ministry partners to schedule our monthly training meeting. “Ministry
Partner Guidelines” were distributed to everyone. Please read in
preparation for next month’s meeting. You will find extra copies on our
display table in the Social Hall.
5. Central Valley affiliates: We met on September 1. Topics included
attention to when and how many fundraisers are scheduled during the
course of the church calendar year, confirmation of caregiver/handler
teams with Dona Martin - K-9 Director, and the process of when a handler
misses initial LCC K-9 training. We also shared some of the concerns and
challenges of sending team members to regional conferences, especially
when distance is large and funds are not.
6. Ministry Partner Reports & Opportunities
a. BBQ wrap up: I reported on the all-around success of the “Dog Days of
Summer” fundraiser. BBQ Team members shared thoughts, with more
input by other Team members. To paraphrase Rob Geiger, “If the
biggest concern was whether or not to have guaranteed silent auction
bids, then it sounds like a success.” We have an excellent foundation
to build on for next year. The group shared other fundraising ideas,
however we need to be sensitive and avoid signs of fundraising-fatigue
within our congregation.
b. Budget update: The total in our CD account is over $26,200. This
includes $4815.50 from the BBQ and nearly $600 from t-shirt sales.

2
c. Monthly Pledges: Pastor Ron will begin this process, where church
members can make monthly, quarterly, or yearly donations to our
Comfort Dog Ministry. He will also be requesting that the CD Ministry
be added as a line item in the church’s “Missions” budget.
d. Micah Comfort Dog Vesting: Jamee accompanied me. We really
enjoyed the Elk Grove welcome for Micah. They were touched by the
bandanas we presented to him from our seamstresses, Susan and
Joanne. Jamee especially liked the personal video message that was
played from LCC President, Tim Hetzner.
e. Groomer: Susan and I are meeting with Brooke at All Paws Pet Salon
on Friday, Sept. 13.
f. Social Media: Jamee reported on her vision and plans for upcoming
posts. She has also been in contact with Jodi (Team Marie, Spokane
Valley), who has been very helpful. Jamee would like 2-3 other people
to work with her as resources. Please reach out to her if this is
something you’d be interested in.
g. Public relations: Laura continues to collaborate with me and write the
“K-9 Korner” articles. Jamee is featuring them on our church FB and
Instagram pages. (Please like and share!) Debbie reported on our
most recent “Coffee with the Chief.” His smile while holding his stand-
in Police Ministry stuffie was noted. I have followed up with the
Housing Director at CSUS and will work to bring Team Micah for a
visit. I also followed up with the JROTC instructors at East Union HS,
and let them know we’d welcome an invitation to visit again, maybe
with our own dog!
h. Extraordinary Dogs: We will publicize this book, which is coming out in
October, including Aaron-Cover Boy-Comfort Dog. Many LCC dogs are
also profiled.
i. Other: (including things I forgot to mention as we went into overtime!)
i. Sue Baldwin completed a ministry directory. It will be printed
and distributed to you.
ii. Aaron, Reuben, and Micah visited Sierra Middle School,
Stockton, which lost a science teacher to the tragic dive boat
fire last week off the coast of Santa Barbara.
iii. Danna and Beth will be working on getting out the donor
letters from the BBQ this week. Anyone that we have record of
will be thanked for their donation of food, wine, silent auction
items, decorations, and monetary donations.
iv. Sue Baldwin and I will attend the LCC West Coast
Region K-9 Conference, hosted by Team Lois, Faith Community
Lutheran Church, Las Vegas, Oct. 26-27. We are paying our
own airfare, $252 each; the ministry will pay for our hotel room
for two nights, approximately $364 total. (This really stressed
me out in deciding how to pay for this. The need for “oversight”
–see #3 - became very real.) We are staying an extra day to
participate in events and visits surrounding the two-year
anniversary of the mass shooting at the music festival on the
Las Vegas Strip. I’m so grateful that Sue will attend with me.
v. Go Team Stockton! Rock your Skype interviews on Oct.
18!

7. Devotion: “A Heart of Gratitude” There are blessings all around us. “We
need to smile, stay positive, adapt, and do a little more wagging!” Pawz
and Pray (2014) Thanks for the inspiration, Laura Gibson! 

3

8. Next meeting: Sunday, October 13, 12:30 pm.

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