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Unexpected Support

Thrivent charitable grant benefits family

When Thrivent Financial members Jennifer Sauerwein and her husband, Corey, lost their infant son two years ago, they got lots of support. From family. From friends. From their faith. But they didn't expect a helping hand from Thrivent.

Baby Samuel died shortly after his birth. And in the midst of one of the most difficult kinds of losses, they learned about the Thrivent Newborn Death Benefit.

It offers a charitable grant of $5,000 to benefit members whose baby is born alive but dies within the first 60 days. The funds went toward $12,000 in uncovered medical bills, freeing up money in their budget to buy a gravestone.

"I was surprised and, of course, very grateful," says Sauerwein, of Aberdeen, South Dakota. "I've been a Thrivent member since I was a child but didn't know about this benefit until I read about it in a Thrivent magazine article a month or two after Samuel's birth."

Like the Sauerweins, many Thrivent members may not know they have access to benefits that can help during some of life's most painful times – from free educational materials to heartfelt support.

"We want to show our members care and compassion," says Mary Vandehey, who leads efforts to grow Thrivent membership. "No matter where our members are in the spectrum of life, we are here to help."

Thrivent benefits reflect the heart of our organization – a fraternal benefit society that helps members bear one another's burdens.

For the Sauerweins, losing Samuel was personally and financially overwhelming. "The worst part is you have all that emotional pain. Then come the doctor bills – and you have no baby," says Sauerwein, who had suffered other losses.

After she had her first son eight years ago, she lost a baby at 19 weeks, and then had a miscarriage at nine weeks. She delivered a healthy little girl five years ago and a son with Down syndrome 10 months ago. When he was born, the Sauerweins used the Uninsurable Child Life Insurance Benefit. That membership benefit gave them the opportunity to purchase $10,000 of whole life insurance coverage for him.

"We've been through a lot, but we're blessed with the three angels we have. Someday we'll get to meet the other three in heaven."

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