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March 1, 2024

Freedom Tree Improvements

We are grateful for the service and commitment from Ted and Dody Hawkins who supported LOMC for many years.
As both these saints have passed, Ted and Dody established an endowment to support the ongoing needs of Dody House and Hawkins Hospitality Center.

We are excited to be replacing the roof at Dody House with a new steel roof that will last for many, many years!

Room 4 of Dody House also recently received a new shower enclosure solving a long-standing issue of leaks. Beautiful!!!

Coming soon, the walkways at Freedom Tree Village will be replaced and repaired.

June 21, 2023

Ahlgrim’s Roost

We want to thank the Ahlgrim family for supporting LOMC and yesterday we were finally able to celebrate the many updates to Ahlgrim’s Roost at Meadows Village. Long-needed new carpeting, tables and chairs highlight the wonderful improvements to the space. Outside, we love the new picnic tables and the sign now proudly welcomes guests to this great place to gather, meet and share in activities.
The Week 1 campers enjoyed welcoming Scott Ahlgrim to Ahlgrim’s Roost where we blessed the space and of course a fun reception of cookies was a hit! Thank you again Ahlgrim family for supporting outdoor ministry at LOMC!
** Scott’s church family is Geneva Lutheran (Geneva, IL) who many are up this week for Team Camp and were excited to see him at LOMC!

April 11, 2023

Prescribed Burn

The Oregon Fire Protection District came out to LOMC to help us with a prescribed burn in a northern grassland area.

On a beautiful evening, the grassland was burned and will provide and encourage new growth.

The native peoples burned for many reasons including the health of plant life. Prescribed burns are a proven way to promote native prairie grasslands to thrive.
LOMC is very grateful to honor and acknowledge the Očhéthi Šakówiŋ, Hoocąk (Ho-Chunk), Myaamia, Sauk/Meskwaki, Peoria, Kiikaapoi (Kickapoo) peoples upon whose ancestral homelands amidst the Rock River Valley we now share ministry as well as all our Indigenous siblings who have and continue to care for this place-this land-and call it their home.

December 13, 2022

New Heating and Cooling for Moline Dining Hall

We are very thankful for the Moline family in providing the funds to replace two large HVAC units in the Moline Dining Hall! The Moline family helped us previously replace chairs and more recently helped us install air-conditioning in the kitchen (which had no air-conditioning since it was built).

After a long installation, we replaced the original heating and cooling with two new systems to more effectively heat and cool our central gathering place at LOMC. Combined with smart thermostats, we will now be able to save money and provide a better comfort experience for campers, weekend groups and all who visit! The Moline Dining Hall now is equipped with three heating and cooling systems to continue to keep ministry comfortable and growing!

Thank you to the Moline family for honoring Pr. Ragnar Moline and his ministry of care and hospitality, by continuing to help LOMC upgrade the Moline Dining Hall.

December 10, 2022

2022 Winter Giving Tuesday

Our 2022 winter Giving Tuesday campaign was a huge success in helping LOMC recover from a difficult first quarter of the year (due to COVID-19).
On Tuesday, November 29 we were excited to provide videos to highlight some recent updates at LOMC from various staff. You can view these and other videos on our YouTube channel.
59 organizations, families and individuals came together to raise $21,450 for the ministry of LOMC.
Special thanks to our LOMC board and staff for providing a $10,000 matching gift!!!


August 27, 2022

Geneva Lutheran Repaints Health Center Deck/Ramp

We are so grateful for the support of Geneva Lutheran (Geneva, IL) with donation of time, talents, funds and participation in LOMC events and programs!
On Saturday, August 27 members of Geneva Lutheran came out on a beautiful day to scrape and then repaint the Health Center’s ramp/deck. The group did an amazing job making the deck look new again! The crew even were able to hike to Barber’s Cliff and visit Jay’s Drive In (in Oregon, IL) before heading home.
We are so appreciative of the group’s fine work and how great the ramp/deck looks!!!


August 9, 2022

Thank You Thrivent Members!

Thrivent Choice Dollars continue to be a significant help in times of need (which is always).
In June, July and August we received over $1,200 in Choice Dollars to help LOMC.
Year-to-date, Thrivent Choice Dollars have contributed over $12,000 to the ministries of LOMC.


June 1, 2022

Campground Improvements

Thank you to George and Mike Davis for sprucing up our Tent and Trailer area at LOMC! Our campground markers were repainted and new solar lights installed making the campground a bit “snappier.” Thank you to Mike and George for volunteering your work AND donating all the supplies. The campground continues to be a great place for tent campers and trailer dwellers!


May 27, 2022

Seed From Nachusa

Prairie plantings coming to Moline Dining Hall area. Thank you to Nachusa Grasslands for the donation of seed from their prairie. It may look like hay or mulch, but we have two bins of seed that contain a great variety of native prairie plants!
Planting will take place in the fall with prep work all summer. A multi-year process that will make the area between the pool and Dining Hall a wonderful spot to learn more about God’s creation.
Visit Nachusa Grasslands when you are at LOMC! Learn about native prairie and spot the bison herd.


May 12, 2022

Spring Giving Tuesday

An amazing campaign for LOMC! Our Spring Giving Tuesday campaign was held on Tuesday, May 3 and we surpassed our goal.

Goal: $25,000
Raised: $34,850

Matching Gifts: $15,755

Gifts were received the week before and the week of the event and with dollar-for-dollar matching gifts from the LOMC board and staff (up to $15,755), LOMC surpassed the $25,000 goal.

With a very slow 2021 fall/winter and 2022 winter season due to continued COVID cancellations, the campaign has helped put LOMC back on track. Thank you to everyone who contributed to help LOMC continue to welcome people into nature.

May 9, 2022

A/C For Moline Dining Hall

Thanks to the Moline family, the Moline Dining Hall is set to receive new air-conditioning units for the main area of the building. Groups, summer campers and more will enjoy a more efficient and effective cooling in the Dining Hall. Thank you Moline family for the significant and exciting donation to get this needed project done.

Units have been delivered but not yet installed in this photo.

May 9, 2022

Thrivent Choice Dollars

Thanks to Thrivent members, LOMC received over $2,000 in directed Thrivent Choice Dollars during the month of April. Each month supporters of LOMC that are Thrivent account holder designate their Choice Dollars to LOMC and over the year it means thousands of dollars to help LOMC grow and thrive.



April 21, 2022

Interpretative Trail

Thanks to a generous $1,500 grant from First Lutheran of Decatur, IL we are beginning to install stations along our trails providing resources for meditation, nature learning and inspiration.

When this phase is complete, we will have six stations along our beautiful trails that will help hikers experience God’s creation in new and unique ways.


March 31, 2022

New Gaga Ball Pit

Thank you to many wonderful donors that together helped raise money for a new Gaga Ball pit at LOMC.

$2,500 was raised to replace the rotting, plywood-based Gaga Ball pit with a new and durable version.

The year-round staff joined together one morning to assemble the new pit and it has already been used by an overnight group. This new “pit” is larger and will last years longer than the older version.


March 1, 2022

Scholarship/Grant Fund Donations

Thanks to three congregations, LOMC is able to help summer campers and church workers alike!

$5,000 has been donated in January and February to LOMC to help the Scholarship/Grant Fund. We would like to thank the following congregations for supporting LOMC and allowing us to help everyone experience God in the outdoors:


February 13, 2021

New Gifts For LOMC

We received the following gifts recently from our Amazon Charity Wish List.
Visit our charity list here…

  • Thanks to Karin Nelson and Jean & Jerry Gieraltowski, LOMC now has 9 sets of snowshoes for guests to use.
  • Thanks to Dalene Arlington we have a new fishing rod and pool toys.

We are so thankful for this wonderful support!

December 7, 2021

Supplies For Emergencies

Two tremendous gifts for LOMC to use in emergencies:

Thrivent Action Team
Dan Dilbeck organized an Action Team to purchase and organize supplies that can be used in emergencies. The Action Team allowed LOMC to purchase first aid kits, lanterns and batteries that will be used throughout LOMC. To organize your own team for LOMC visit this page.

Amazon Charity Wish List
From an unknown donor, we received this incredible emergency EMT backboard to be used with head, neck and spine injuries. We hope to never use it but we are glad to have it on-hand for emergencies (replaces an old board). To see our Amazon Charity Wish List visit this page.

Emergency Supplies from Thrivent Action Team
EMT Backboard



November 19, 2021

Donation from Grace Lutheran (Westchester, IL)

We received a very generous $15,000 donation from the closing of Grace Lutheran Church of Westchester, IL (Chicagoland). We are always sad to see the closing of a congregation yet the funds from the closing can be a very important help to other churches and organizations. Our Gift Acceptance committee has designated $10,000 be put into our capital fund and $5,000 into our scholarship/grant fund.

Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church was founded in 1928 as a mission church, and was the first church to be established after the formation of The Village Of Westchester.

November 4, 2021

Donation from Freedom Lutheran (Oregon, IL)

We received over $1,700 in donations from the closing worship of Freedom Lutheran Church of Oregon, IL. We are always sad to see the closing of a congregation yet the funds from the closing can be a very important help to other churches and organizations. Freedom started their ministry holding their first worship service in LOMC’s Dody Lodge and then moving to our Hospitality Center and then the Moline Dining Hall. Freedom eventually held worship services in town (Oregon, IL) and returned to LOMC’s Hospitality Center for their closing worship.

Freedom Lutheran held a very wonderful closing worship featuring many local ELCA rostered leaders including Bishop Jeffrey Clements. Members from Freedom attended along with other special guests and the service included liturgy, personal stories and call for hope.

LOMC was very thankful to receive not only a generous donation from the people of Freedom Lutheran but an altar cross, processional cross, baptismal font and several Bibles to be used in LOMC’s ministry.



October 28, 2021

Concrete Pad For Maintenance

The maintenance building near the entrance of LOMC received a much-needed concrete pad inside the buildings. The new pad allows maintenance staff to work on vehicles without having to lay on the bare ground. The concrete pad was paid for by a generous donation that will help improve LOMC’s ability to serve others!

In the process of preparing for the new concrete pad, we have also been able to clean and organize the maintenance building! Things are looking great as we continue to sort and clean.

October 20, 2021

Geneva Lutheran Donation

The congregation of Geneva Lutheran made the important decision to give back to several organizations this month. Throughout the pandemic the congregation was able to maintain, sustain and go financially beyond the norm and they decided to give back. LOMC identified a few very needed projects and the top priority is replacing two (one defunct, one leaking) water heaters that primarily provide hot water to our dishwashing machine. With enormously generous funds from the Geneva Lutheran, LOMC will be able to complete a project over a year in the making.

We will be pleased to install two on-demand, energy efficient water heaters able to keep up with demand for dish washing and hand washing. We are so extremely thankful for the simply amazing help from our friends at Geneva Lutheran. The congregation of Geneva has a long history of being active at LOMC and we treasure our relationship!

Geneva Lutheran website…

October 13, 2021

Freedom Tree Surprises

Thanks to a Thrivent Action Team sponsored by Dan Dilbeck we were able to add puzzles, games and replace a fire grate. Marander and Dody Lodges will both receive a special edition of Monopoly and two small puzzle games. The fire grate in Marander was damaged by heat and the Action Team allowed us to replace the grate and make experiencing a fire safer and more enjoyable. Pop corn poppers are were also purchased to allow guests at LOMC to enjoy popping corn over a campfire or in a fireplace.

Thrivent Member? Learn how you can support LOMC…


October 7, 2021

Bottle Filler Station

A huge thanks to the Elkay Family Foundation and the work of DeAnna Clutter who enabled LOMC to receive a brand new Elkay bottle filler station for the Moline Dining Hall. The Clutter family are long supporters of LOMC and DeAnna, through her work at Elkay, was able to help us apply for this wonderful addition to the Dining Hall. Guests, campers and visitors will be able to use the standard drinking fountain and also fill up reusable water bottles with filtered water. This is an amazing gift!

Elkay Family Foundation website…


October 7, 2021

Thrivent Choice for October 2021

Typically each month, Thrivent sends grant funds to non-profits through their Thrivent Choice Dollars program. Thrivent members choose LOMC as their preferred organization to send their Choice Dollars. The dollars cost Thrivent members nothing and it benefits LOMC and other non-profits greatly!

The following folks helped LOMC receive over $70 through Thrivent Choice in October:

  • Rob Gieraltowski
  • Thomas Gould
  • Fernando Mercado
  • Stella Schroeder

Thrivent Choice Information


September 20, 2021

Pandemic Progress

Your support has helped LOMC stay open, ministering and improving. Without so many people supporting LOMC through: donations, service work, Thrivent Choice Dollars, Thrivent Action Teams, helping promote LOMC in churches and so much more… we cannot imagine where things would be for the LOMC ministry.

Since the pandemic you have helped LOMC:

  • With providing needed funds to keep LOMC going. With all your donations we have continued to pay staff, limit staff reductions, pay all the bills, welcome guests and keep ministry flowing. Thank you for your monetary donations!!!
  • Install a new trail to Meadows Retreat Cabins and trail maintenance on the Meadows/Timbers Trail.
  • Give Moline Dining Hall deck a protective stain courtesy of Tri Church.
    • Tri Church also painted parts of the playground and completed painting of the bridge (near the Office) which THEKA camp sanded.
    • Immanuel Lutheran came out for “God’s Work. Our Hands.” to paint the Drama Drum.
  • Improve the John Califf Memorial Garden (near the Moline Dining Hall) with solar lights, weeding, plantings and significant work to improve a drainage ditch thanks the Carol Walter and the Thrivent Action Team.
  • New tables, artwork, nature posters and more in the Nelson Program Center thanks to Bob and Sue Gingras (and also for their Thrivent Action Team).
  • Improve the Prayer Labyrinth with new plants, weeding and rock placement thanks to Pr. Carla Thompson Powell and her Thrivent Action Team.
  • New HVAC units for the Hawkins Hospitality Center paid for through LOMC’s capital fund.
  • Install new curtains throughout Marander and Dody Lodges at Freedom Tree Village thanks to Thrivent Action Teams and volunteer work.
  • Place smart thermostats throughout LOMC to help save LOMC money, keep guest fees down and more accurately maintain temperatures.
  • Provide games, puzzles and more for guests in Marander and Dody Lodges.
  • Revamp (many times) what we offer to guests from opening up to Household Getaways, providing Church Worker Retreats and a more expansive experience for our Retreat Together events.
  • Plan and offer hiking events in fall and spring allowing small groups (during the pandemic) to safely get outside and experience the creation around them.
  • Encourage Day Events with great experiences including hiking, canoeing, team building, archery and more.
  • Purchase a new LOMC maintenance truck that replaces two (falling apart) trucks. The new truck also now has a fantastic new plow for snow days.
    • We also had a generous donation of a pickup truck that got us through some tough months when the other trucks were on their last legs.
  • New decorations for Marander and Dody Lodge fireplace mantels. Each season we are adding different decorations reflecting the season.
  • To fully deep clean the Retreat Cabins (bunks) especially the bathrooms and through a donation we were able to upgrade many of the mattresses in our bunk beds.
  • To be fully equipped with hand sanitizer, air cleaners, disinfectant sprayers and more to help us all stay safe.
  • Cut down dead trees at the Tent and Trailer area as well as other areas to make things safer. Thanks to amazing volunteers who do amazing work!!!
  • The Health Center was improved at the end of 2019 through memorial funds and recently an additional hallway had new flooring, overhead light and baseboards installed.
  • Obtain new paper towel dispensers in the Hospitality Center at Freedom Tree Village which are working so much better compared to the old ones.
  • New boiler (thanks to our capital fund) for Marander Lodge that will keep guests warm all fall and winter.
  • Provide new signage throughout LOMC!
  • Provided three overnight camps in summer 2021 with Middle School Scurry and high school THEKA bringing 29 youth to LOMC for a partial or full week.
  • By praying for the land, staff, programs, facilities, guests and all of LOMC! Thank you for your prayers!!!


September 13, 2021

Drama Drum Repainting

Thank you Immanuel Lutheran in nearby Dixon, IL for coming out on “God’s Work. Our Hands” day to help get our Drama Drum in great shape. The Drama Drum is centrally located in our main area and serves as a stage, gathering location, activity headquarters, resting spot and so much more. An old barn silo foundation, the Drama Drum is a favorite spot at LOMC and needed a refresh. A few summer camping groups had been peeling old paint off to get it ready for a coat or two of paint.

We are very thankful for the Immanuel Lutheran group who came out on a hot September Sunday to give our beloved Drama Drum a facelift!

“God’s Work. Our Hands.” information… 

September 9, 2021

Thrivent Choice Dollars

We are very thankful to have received $853 in July, August and September from the Thrivent Choice program.
We want to thank the following Thrivent members for designating their Thrivent Choice dollars to LOMC:
  • Kristie Burmood
  • Albert Campbell
  • Dan Dilbeck
  • Rob Gieraltowski
  • Kathleen Zank
  • Ronald Zank
  • James Hanson
  • Carl Heggen
  • Anders Lundsberg
  • Pamela Lundsberg
  • Carol Walter
  • Kristie Burmood
  • Jennifer Campbell
  • Charles Schroeder
  • Eric Strack

Thrivent members are encouraged to check their accounts to see if they have eligible dollars to designate to a non-profit of their choice.
Thrivent Choice dollars benefit LOMC greatly each month!

Learn more here…

August 30, 2021

Landscaping Work Completed

We were thankful to have Carol Walter head up a Thrivent Action Team for LOMC to do some needed landscaping projects around our John Califf Memorial Garden.

  • New plants added.
  • New solar lights placed in the garden.
  • New tools purchased including rakes, shovels and more.
  • Drainage area fixed and improved. A small but steep drainage area immediately east of the Moline Dining Hall deck had become highly eroded and posed a safety issue.
  • The Thrivent Action Team gave LOMC the needed funds to gather people together to work on the various projects.
  • For more information on how to help LOMC with a Thrivent Action Team click here…

Linda Patterson came out and adopted one of our large plant containers and planted a handful of marigold plants in it. After a bit of watering they have really took off. The planter is located just west of the Norm Nelson Program Center and despite a lack of rain the orange flowers are doing very well!

Thank you Linda and Carol for your support of LOMC!


July 17, 2021

Tri Church Does Amazing Work

We are once again in awe of three local churches that came together to help improve LOMC through painting and staining. Tri Church is made up of the following churches:

In 2019, Tri Church helped stain picnic tables, planted flowers and donated many items necessary to keeping LOMC clean and tidy!
This year Tri Church banded together to:

  • Stain the Moline Dining Hall deck
  • Tend and place plantings in a butterfly garden at Freedom Tree Village
  • Stain picnic tables in various locations at LOMC
  • Paint a footbridge
  • Paint roofs over playground

After work was completed the group enjoyed a cookout at LOMC’s Pole Barn and celebrated with a worship service before heading home. LOMC is so very thankful for the time, money and efforts that Tri Church shared to make these projects so successful. LOMC cannot be more joyful in the way everything turned out!

Thank you to all the members of Tri Church and especially those that were able to come out to help with the various projects.


June 28, 2021

Scouts In Action

Storms in Central Illinois a few weeks ago tore through the Ingersoll Scout Reservation causing it to close for a week while storm damage was repaired. The closing of the camp caused Kirkwood Troop 350 from attending their anticipated time at camp this summer. Scoutmasters scrambled to find a place for the troop to stay for the week and contacted LOMC about our availability. LOMC was very glad to have the troop stay in our campground area and for them to still experience a week of camping together.

More storms came through Central Illinois this past weekend; please be praying for the Ingersoll and all those dealing with storm damage.

During their stay, the scouts completed two projects and we are so appreciative of their wonderful help!

  • The troop hiked our geocache course and helped cut down brush on trails and around our geocaches making them easier to find.
  • LOMC needed to significantly improve our outdoor volleyball court and after two loads of sand and scout help… we have a sand volleyball court again!

We can’t say enough about how much help this is to LOMC and the year-round staff. Well done to our scouts and the scouting program!!!



June 21, 2021

New Truck

Today we purchased a previously-owned heavy duty truck to help us maintain our 600+ acres at LOMC. Our truck that we used to plow LOMC roads was seriously rusted out and we prayed it would start each time we needed to use it. Goodbye old rust bucket and hello to our new truck!

Thanks to a very generous donor and the long-searching work of Bob Gingras (Property Committee Chair) and Ken Dilbeck (Property Manager) we can now breathe easier this winter and throughout the year as we diligently maintain the beautiful land of LOMC.

June 9, 2021

Thrivent Choice Dollars

We are very thankful to have received $98 in June from the Thrivent Choice program.
We want to thank the following Thrivent members for designating their Thrivent Choice dollars to LOMC:
  • Claire Edgecomb
  • Todd Peterson

Thrivent members are encouraged to check their accounts to see if they have eligible dollars to designate to a non-profit of their choice.
Thrivent Choice dollars benefit LOMC greatly each month!

Learn more here…

June 5, 2021

Major Tree Trimming and More

Great work by Kurt Wolter, Brad Pearson, Bob Gingras and Chris Senti (LOMC staff) in trimming one of our great White Oak trees and taking down a few trees at our campground. HOT day to cut things up. Now LOMC is a safer place to experience the outdoors and it brought us firewood too. Thank you to all for the fine work!!!

May 28, 2021

Donation of Zero-Turn Mower

Enormous gift! Today David and Claudia Nelson gifted LOMC with a brand new Simplicity zero-turn mower. We are beyond amazed at their generosity and especially thankful for Pr. David’s research and help. Wow!
Cᴀɴ ʏᴏᴜ ᴛᴇʟʟ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ᴏᴜʀ ᴘʀᴏᴘᴇʀᴛʏ ᴍᴀɴᴀɢᴇʀ ᴋᴇɴ ɪꜱ ᴇxᴄɪᴛᴇᴅ?

May 25, 2021

New Towel Dispensers For Hospitality Center

Our Property Chair Bob Gingras is the best! Bob replaced our paper towel dispensers in our Hospitality Center restrooms and kitchen. Thank you Bob for the donation and volunteer work!!! The new dispensers work beautifully!

May 24, 2021

Nature Center Updates

Nature Center receives some love! The Norm Nelson Nature/Program Center has new posters and frames from a Thrivent Action Team. In addition, with the help of our friend Sue Gingras, we are reorganizing and displaying some items. Repainted and additional decorating – all looking very good!