Do you know a loved one, relative, friend or neighbor who has passed away from cancer or another long term degenerative disease? Can you hear that person say, " I only want to spend my final days at home. I don't want to go to an institution to die." Many of us have heard those words and wondered, "How can I help that person feel at peace in a home setting for the final days of their life?"

I heard those words from both my father and my mother. I was fortunate to have loving sisters to tend to both our father and mother during their final stages of cancer related diseases. They lived near to my parents and were able to visit and help the visiting nurses and other drop-in aides keep my parents living at home till their passing.

Not everyone is as fortunate as our family was in helping parents and loved ones choose how to spend their final days. When children move away from home, and friends and neighbors can no longer provide round-the-clock in-home support for a terminally ill person, the options become few. To be sure, our community is blessed with very fine institutions that can provide enhanced services and care for the dying at such a critical time. But not everyone desires, or can afford to move to an institution for their final days. And so a dedicated group of volunteers has come together with the sole idea of building and staffing a Comfort Care Home in Canandaigua.

For those unfamiliar with the Comfort Care philosophy of hospice service to the terminally ill and their families, imagine a home that looks like any home in your neighborhood. Walk inside that home and you will find two or three paid staff and a literal army of trained volunteers who create a loving home-like atmosphere for up to two residents at a time. There are no medical bills to worry about. The service is free. A resident still has access to their hospice benefit, but their stay in the home carries no charge. The comfort care home keeps its doors open through grants, donations, fund raising, memorials and a large number of dedicated volunteers. The sole mission of the staff is to help terminally ill residents and their families create rich, loving and peaceful memories of final days spent together.

The Canandaigua Comfort Care committee is hard at work raising funds, creating a not-for-profit corporation, acquiring property and seeking volunteers who can organize activities, host events, recruit volunteers and further the comfort care mission in Canandaigua. If our Lord has given you a special calling to help the terminally ill find peace and comfort in their final days, we want to hear from you. Please contact your church's CCIA representative or send an email to me. Canandaigua Churches In Action Board has taken an early and active role because they know the community need is apparent, but ultimately Canandaigua Comfort Care and the mission of hospice service will take root because of the efforts of volunteers like you.

God's Peace be with you...
Rich Russell


A reminder to community members that CCIA is a designated recipient of United Way funds. So far, CCIA receives on average, $1600 each year through this avenue.
CCIA’s designation number is 5850.


We live in beautiful part of the country. No place better to experience the four seasons. As we finish this Fall Season not only is it a seasonal change but it is a season of change for many emergency providers here in our community.

After visiting a food security meeting for our local area this month many emergency providers are facing some challenges and tough decisions. The cost for food and food availability are at the forefront. Some providers have already spent their grants. Many are looking for ways to help fill the gaps. Some have decreased visits or are giving lesser amounts of food.

We have not had to cut back on open hours or amounts of food distributed, but CCIA does shares in some of these “seasons of change”.

As grants become fewer and the amounts awarded decrease, we need to be creative in ways to raise financial support and hold food drives. As part of the body of Christ, you can help. Holding food drives to support the food pantry can done. Being creative in ways to have fund raisers to help support CCIA’s mission. Together we can overcome the challenges we face. Together we can expand the emergency services that we are able to provide.

I must close with a positive part of our food security meeting. I had the pleasure to share about CCIA and the many partners t at one location. We do not realize that we are “one of a kind” in this area. Nowhere else in our county can you find this many emergency hat we have all providers all in one location. Plus we offer medical and dental care. WOW! That is truly amazing. We give God all the Glory!

Continue to pray for CCIA as we trust God to meet all our needs. Pray for wisdom as we look at a Comfort Care Home that will benefit our community and for the financial and space needs that will arise as we move forward. Pray for the key leaders and volunteers that are required to make this home a success.

If you interested in holding a food drive or a fund raiser please contact me.
God’s richest blessings,

Jeff Lippincott
CCIA Executive Director


We are blessed to provide many absolutely free dental services to residents of Ontario County through the generosity of local dentists, hygienists and dental staff. We are also blessed to have the continued use of several rooms in the Canandaigua Primary School building, where we hold our screenings on the first Saturday of the month (Sept- May).
We have over 80 people who volunteer their time and talents every month to bless those in need of dental care It is a privilege to be a part of such a caring community.

We are always interested in having new dentists partner with us. If you know of any dental professional interested in helping “Supply a Smile,” please have them contact me at I would be glad to meet with them and answer any of their questions about our program.

People’s lives are being changed, one smile at a time!

Privileged to serve,
Rev. Joan Wood RDH


As the CCIA board rotates, there are three new representatives taking their places.

Maggie Wiegand, the new rep for Good Shepherd Lutheran Church is a familiar face to CCIA. Maggie has served as the Volunteer Coordinator for the past three years. She is very excited to serve on the board and interact with others who are as passionate about CCIA as she is.

“I am eager to see Good Shepherd become more actively involved with CCIA and to reawaken its vision for CCIA.”

She feels privileged to serve with others who think of the people in need in our community as a first action, rather than sometimes as an afterthought.

She wants to encourage everyone in Canandaigua to not only continue to pray for CCIA, but to become more aware of the financial needs, especially the Food Pantry. “There is a greater urgency than perhaps people realize. Funding has been cut from grants while the demand only increases. And there is always a need to replenish the pool of volunteers as people who have served for a long time are ready to move on to the next phase of their lives.”

Patti Bower is also a familiar face, having first served at St. Mary’s Food Pantry for four years, and then when the pantries combined under CCIA, it was a natural transition. She has served as it’s coordinator for over six years. When she heard that the St. Mary’s board seat was going to be open, she knew she wanted to serve.”I knew the Food Pantry intimately, but I also wanted to know all aspects of the CCIA services, and become informed and involved.” And now she is the board secretary! “I am enjoying being a part of giving input, helping to be a part of the decision making process. I am enjoying the first hand insight I am gaining.”


If you are at the stage in life, where you truly don’t need more “stuff” and family and friends struggle to know what to give you for Christmas, consider the following. Tell them they can make you truly blessed by donating to CCIA in your honor. They can designate either the “General Fund”, the “Food Pantry” or the new “Comfort Care Home Initiative." They will be blessed, you will be blessed and CCIA will grow!(And of course, it is a tax deduction !)

Please consider!