The Archives

Rebuilding After a Fire

At three o'clock in the morning on November 18, 2012, Victor and Laurie MacDonald and their children awoke to find their house on fire.

Family members staggered through blackened, smoke-filled hallways and out the front door of their home in Orange, Massachusetts. One son, Daniel, raced back inside to lead his grandfather out a different exit, while two other sons, unable to make it through the stifling hallway, waited anxiously on the upstairs porch roof for help. As flames licked at the front door, all twelve family members, including the boys on the roof, finally made it to safety.   

Firefighters brought the fire under control after three and half hours, but the remaining structure was uninhabitable. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, the MacDonalds found themselves completely dependent on the kindness of others. A neighbor kindly provided a four-room apartment, while other people donated food, bottled water, home goods, and clothing. 

Assistance also came from the Home School Foundation, the charitable arm of the Home School Legal Defense Association.

"I was very blessed by the deep concern of the Home School Foundation and our HSF State Ambassadors, Robert and Darlene Muto, who wanted to be sure that we had all we needed to continue to home school.” said Laurie MacDonald. “They directed me to a wonderful source of free curriculum that helped us to replace some of the school books we lost in the fire. It was a great blessing!"

In the weeks following the fire, volunteers from the Home School Foundation’s Ambassador Program offered time, labor, and love. A donation from the Massachusetts Ambassador Fund helped defray the cost of the dumpsters needed while gutting the remains of the house.

Victor MacDonald related how encouraged they were by the HSF Ambassadors. “We have been debt free since 1998 and the idea of going into debt for dumpsters weighed heavily on our minds. We are so thankful to the Lord for the help HSF has been to our family in the removal of 35,000 pounds of burned belongings and house debris.”

Since then, the MacDonald family, professionally known as the MacDonald Family Singers, has been able to go on their singing tours as scheduled without any cancellations or postponed performances due in part to HSF’s help. When not touring in the family bus, or performing at churches and prisons, they continue to work on rebuilding their home.

An HSF-sponsored benefit concert featuring the MacDonald Family Singers is planned for Friday, July 19, 2013 at 7pm at Bethlehem Bible Church in West Boylston, Massachusetts.

For more information on how to help this family, please contact HSF State Ambassadors Robert and Darlene Muto at

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