The Ebola virus in West Africa has become a destructive force in the communities and lives of our brothers and sisters. The Lutheran World Federation is calling for action through prayers, donations, and direct response for volunteers and health care providers. The faith communities from around the world are pushing to support these communities as much as possible but the virus is proving to be a crisis, and no longer just an outbreak.

What is Ebola?
According to the World Health Organization, the Ebola virus is spread through human to human contact from directly touching blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, as well  as surfaces and materials contaminated with the fluid. A person infected can start showing symptoms as early as two days, and as late as 21 days. The symptoms include fever fatigue, muscle pain, headache and sore throat. From there, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, symptoms of impaired kidney and liver function. Bleeding from the mouth and in stools is known to occur in some cases.

These symptoms are hard to distinguish if the patient is infected with Ebola or malaria, typhoid fever, or meningitis. It is extremely important for the health care providers to test the patients who exhibit these symptoms under quarantined testing to ensure the safety of both the providers and patients. But this also means that there are a lot of patients who are not receiving the care they need because so many of the doctors, nurses, and staff are working to contain the virus.

How can we help?
The LWF reported after the UNHR Council meeting on September 22nd that, “faith based organizations and churches are essential for an effective response to the Ebola crisis in Western Africa.” The Lutheran churches in the infected areas are working to not only respond to the health care needed, but the needs of the community as well. The donations of time, prayer, and money are all important tools in helping to contain and treat the virus. One of the largest concerns is that people may be ignoring the warnings of the virus being spread through human contact and are touching dead bodies, or turning to different methods of treatment to try and cure the virus when in reality it may be spreading the disease more.

As a church community in Southern Africa we may be far from the virus, but we need to be closer to the infected communities. We are all one in Christ  and in these moments where our brothers and sisters are so heavily suffering, we need to respond. LUCSA is asking that you continue to pray for these communities and inform yourself on the current state of West Africa, and support financially in any way that you can.


Donate Directly to Lutheran Disaster Response

By clicking here you can go directly to the ELCA website to donate money to their cause. The money is going to help in responding to the outbreak with food distributions, shipment of personal protective equipment, training health workers, outreach through education about prevention, and construction of an isolation unit at Phebe Hospital and School of Nursing in Liberia.
Your gift designated for the Ebola Outbreak Response will be used in full (100%) to assist those who are suffering and living with the threat of this virus.

Other Ways To Give
Mail
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
ELCA Gift Processing Center
P.O. Box 1809
Merrifield, VA  22116-8009
Write “Ebola Outbreak Response” on your check’s memo line.

Phone
Credit card by phone: 800-638-3522