Lutheran Homes and Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan combine efforts to serve the needs of Michigan families
Photo: David Gehm president/ceo of LHM and LCFS (Left), Robert G. Miles outgoing president/ceo of LCFS
Lutheran Homes of Michigan and Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan publicly announced on Tuesday, June 26, that the two entities would partner together in serving the needs of people in a way that honors God, and addresses the needs of people across socioeconomic, ethnic and age-related boundaries. Effective July 1, LCFS enters into an expanded management agreement with LHM. While there is no immediate date identified, the two service organizations continue toward merging into one human care organization.
Lutheran Homes of Michigan and Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan have been providing human care services for more than a century — since 1893 and 1899, respectively.
David Gehm, who has served as president and CEO of Lutheran Homes of Michigan since 1994, will serve as president and CEO of both organizations. Robert Miles, current president and CEO of Lutheran Child and Family Service, will retire July 1, following 34 years of service.
The announcement, made at the 100th Michigan District Convention of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod-Michigan District, provided a unique forum to solicit both input on and support for the work that will continue to be performed. As part of the announcement, LCMS churches within the Michigan District were asked to become active partners in addressing the human care needs of Michigan’s families.
Gehm challenged the delegation to partner with the new organization to achieve four key goals in the next three years:
- Work closely with 25 congregations to touch the lives of people in their communities;
- Recruit 50 foster families each year (150 total) from LCMS congregations in Michigan;
- Establish 25 new Aging Enriched Resource Centers within LCMS congregations in Michigan; and
- Identify 10 adoptive families per year (30 total) from LCMS congregations in Michigan.
Special grant funding was awarded by Thrivent Financial to assist with these four initiatives.
Two resolutions were brought before more than 1,200 church and lay leaders from across the state — and both overwhelmingly passed. The first resolution, 3-04a, was “To Commend the Partnership of Lutheran Homes of Michigan (LHM) and Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan (LCFS). The second resolution, 3-05, was “To Demonstrate our Recognition of, and Support for, all Life by Particularly Encouraging Foster Care Homes and Adoption.” The resolutions may be found here: www.michigandistrict.org/convention/business/resolutions.
LHM and LCFS are committed to meeting people where they are physically, relationally, emotionally and spiritually. LHM and LCFS will have 1,400 committed, trained staff annually providing over $65 million in services on behalf of the LCMS and its congregations.
God has blessed LHM and LCFS with the benefit of input and guidance from trusted friends and colleagues including the Michigan District and Synodical Presidents, Lutheran Services in America, Michigan District Church Extension Fund, sister agencies in Michigan and across the country, congregations and government partners. Because of their shared vision and commitment, the future for children and families in Michigan, both young and old, is bright.
If you would like to join these two organizations as they seek to establish a modern-day “human care organization” like the one found in Acts 6, please e-mail information@AgingEnriched.org.
To view the video announcement and share this exciting news with others, CLICK HERE