Piercing the Darkness: Shining a Light into the Community

September 18, 2017
Tawny Cowen-Zanders | tawny.cowen-zanders@use.salvationarmy.org | (215) 880-9036

Piercing the Darkness: Shining a Light into the Community

Naples, Fla. (Sept. 18, 2017) – Clervania Lahens wasn’t expecting much for her birthday gift – perhaps some dark chocolate or a lovely bouquet of wildflowers.  She would have even settled for a few moments of peace and quiet, especially since she shares her home with her husband and two sets of twins ages 3 and 15, as well as her other children ages 5, 11, 17, and 20. Never in her wildest dreams would she have believed her birthday gift would be more precious than gold – her life  

“Hurricane Irma came on my birthday.  What a wild, wild day,” shared Clervania. “Celebrating another year takes on a whole new meaning when you think it may be your last.  My birthday gift became the safety of my family, as well as our home.”

Clervania’s family, as well as her home, survived relatively intact; however, like most of Collier County, she still does not have power and she cannot drink the water due to a water boil alert. She is not able to refrigerate nutritious food and rationing the water is laborious; however, she finds the darkness to be the most difficult challenge.

“You don’t realize how dark it can get until there is no electricity anywhere,” marveled Clervania. “I know this will sound strange but the absence of light is almost suffocating.  The children are frightened and, truthfully, I am, as well. Candles cast every shadows.”

She is grateful for the presence of The Salvation Army.  “I smile when I see your feeding vehicle because you are a light that pierces the darkness. Your hot food, cold water, and welcoming arms light up our community. Thank you.”

Clervania can be assured The Salvation Army will continue to shine a light into her community, long after the last light comes back on in the community.  This is our sacred promise to Clervania, her family, and her community. 

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to www.SalvationArmyUSA.org or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.

Our Mission

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
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