“I’m not Mormon, not Catholic and as far as I know my wife and I are not crazy.” That’s how my guest on the latest Family Stories podcast answered my first question. Somehow, in the midst of raising a wonderful family of eleven children (no that’s not a typo), Denny Nissley and his wife, Sandy, have built a wonderful non-profit organization called Christ-In-Action. Denny says he is the Mayor of a small town he named, Estrogenville; ten of their eleven are girls. WOW! And all eleven are serving in some way with Christ-in-Action.
You can learn more about his family on the latest episode of the Family Stories podcast, Helping Hands Change Lives.
Denny understands, if you really want to help people then you need to be willing to be inconvenienced and get your hands a little dirty. And he has been doing just that since founding Christ-In-Action in 1982. For 27 years he traveled all fifty states and 18 countries working with people on the streets. In 1998 his organization began disaster relief work and that has been their primary focus for the last twenty years. They have served in every major disaster striking the US since then. From tornados to fires, to earthquakes and hurricanes, they have been there; “Bringing Hope to American Families.”
How are they different from say, FEMA or the Red Cross? First, CIA partners with local churches and often stages from those church parking lots. They realized that pastors know their communities best and where the help is needed most.
The full-time staff of the ministry is all volunteer, including Denny and Sandy. They all raise their own support separate from the gifts that come to the organization to help the hurting families. One hundred percent (100%) of the funds donated to Christ-In-Action go directly to meeting the needs of victims. I know of only a few organizations who could or would do that.
Thousands of volunteers have registered with Christ-In-Action across America. When disaster strikes, those volunteers are notified within hours and are quickly mobilized. Often, they are the first on the scene. Simultaneously CIA deploys their equipment–rolling kitchens, bathrooms and showers, an internet café for family communication, backhoes, skid loaders, tractors and more.
Most importantly, they know how to help people who have lost everything. Not only with the clean-up, but emotionally and spiritually as well. Many times, it’s as simple as sitting with someone and holding their hand.
To hear the rest of Denny’s story, click here.
Then, listen to other inspiring stories, subscribe to the Family Stories podcast.
God Bless you,