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MAY 2010

12100 Champion Forest Dr. Houston, TX 77066 281-444-3126 P 281-444-1733 F Inside This Issue

“A PLACE FOR ALL PEOPLE” CAPITAL CAMPAIGN Commitment Weekend May 8 & 9 Kinsmen and Lutherhill Ministries have teamed up for an exciting capital campaign called “A Place for ALL People.” The goal is to raise $600,000 which will be split equally between Kinsmen and Lutherhill. Learn more about this effort on page 3.

A Note From Pastor Jeff: Remember At Camp When ...


Noisy Offering: Krause Children‘s Center


―A Place for ALL People‖ Commitment Weekend is May 8 & 9


Music Notes and News


Ready for the Next Steps?


Louisiana Letter from Synod Assembly


Discover Your Spiritual Gifts


April Photos


The Best of the Rest


May Birthdays


Youth & Family News

8 - 11


Remember at camp when ... Dear Disciples: Kinsmen has valued children, youth and family ministry long before my arrival. One of our greatest assets here are children, young people and their families. This was reinforced to me April 11 when Pastor Mark and I accompanied our acolytes to Laser Quest. Although maybe some of our acolytes enjoyed shooting their pastors a little too much, they are all reasons why I am hopeful about the future. I can think of no place that has more potential to change lives, build faith and experience family than camp. It was my own experience as a child and as a pastor in Victoria and now at Kinsmen. One Sunday, I shared two pictures of Summer Swoboda Gualt at age 10 and at age 37.

These were her reflections:

―Church camp was a

true blessing ... for me, it all started at Lutherhill. I knew that I wanted to go to camp every year! It‘s amazing how many friends have come from weeks spent at camp and even more amazing how many times I have since crossed paths with those friends … or even in my career now. Our conversation always returns to ‗Remember at camp when …‖ I feel very blessed to have such amazing memories and experiences from my times at Lutherhill. I want my children

to feel the same love and be able to create the same kind of fond memories one day.‖ I hope you are prayerfully considering your response to the ―A Place for ALL People‖ capital campaign. The goal is $600,000 with half being invested in the Kinsmen Village of Lutherhill and the other half being invested in paying off the debt we incurred in the third quarter of 2009 and in maintaining and improving our wonderful facilities ---the majority invested in repaving the parking lot. You have a chance to make a difference. I hope you do! In Christ,

Jeffery Alvestad, Pastor

M AY n o i s y o f f e r i n g re c i pi e n t: K R AU SE C H I L D RE N ’ S C E N T E R The Noisy Offering for May is Krause Children‘s Center, which is owned and operated by Lutheran Social Services (LSS), the social service arm of The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. LSS affiliated ministries serve more than 35,000 people in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, regardless of religious beliefs, ethnicity, gender or age. Its ministries include children's centers, therapeutic foster care, adoption, disaster response, emergency assistance, senior health care, retirement communities and adult day care.

Krause Children‘s Center specializes in treating abused, neglected and troubled boys and girls, ages 11-17. Monies will be collected at worship on May 15 & 16. For more information on Krause Children‘s Center, please visit


March 2010 Good Samaritan Fund (Noisy Offering)


The Life Center (food)


Youth World Vision


Youth World Vision (direct checks)


Synod - ELCA Benevolence


Krause Children's Center 25752 Kingsland Blvd. Katy, TX 77494 281-392-7505

Kinsmen Only Benevolence


February TOTAL


2010 TOTAL



“a place for all people” commitment weekend is may 8 & 9 Commitment Weekend for the Kinsmen and Lutherhill Ministries capital campaign, ―A Place for ALL People,‖ will be May 8 & 9. Kinsmen‘s goal is to raise $600,000, with half of the funds being contributed to Lutherhill and the other half staying here at the church to be used for debt reduction and improvements/repairs. Kinsmen‘s first 16 lead gifts equal just under $100,000. Please prayerfully consider a donation, as all monies will make Lutherhill and Kinsmen even better at being ―A place for all people, of every generation, to experience the love of Christ in unique settings and new

ways.‖ Committee members are Gary Simpson, chair; Jeff & Stephanie Brady, Yvonne Dean, Bob Fox, Randy Grobe, Katie Kolkhorst, Bob Madsen, Darlene Menk, and Bob Parliament. Pastor Jeff and Susan Converse represent Kinsmen staff members. Please feel free to contact any of these individuals for more information or to answer your questions or visit the Kinsmen website‘s home page and view the campaign video. VISIT LUTHERHILL For those who have never been to Lutherhill or who would like to see their recent updates, join us for a day trip on Saturday, May 8, for a tour and lunch at the camp. The Kinsmen buses will leave the church at 9 a.m. and should return

to the church around 5 p.m. The trip is available for the first 80 people, so please RSVP to staff member Julie Hughes or via the sign-up sheet in the Narthex. LUTHERHILL DEDICATION CEREMONY A dedication ceremony at Lutherhill for its new buildings and facilities — water plant, sewer plant, six cabins, retreat house/health center — will be held on Saturday, June 5, from 12-3 p.m. Three of the new cabins are known as the Kinsmen Village. Bishop Mike Rinehart will be leading the ceremony. Church busses will leave Kinsmen at 9 a.m. with a lunch stop in Brenham. Contact the church office by Thursday, May 27, to reserve a spot, and let‘s show our enthusiastic support of the ministry growth of Lutherhill.

M U SI C N OT E S A N D N E W S MUSIC MINISTRY SUNDAY IS MAY 16 Come celebrate the music ministry at Kinsmen through readings from the Book of Psalms and musical offerings from all of our faithful servants in the music department. On this day, all of Kinsmen musical ensembles — Alleluia Choir, contemporary band, Kinsmen Brass, Kinsmen Ringers, Morning Glory Choir, Sunshine Singers, Jubilee Ringers and Youth Ringers — will perform at the three Sunday worship services. Attend church on Sunday, May 16, and show your appreciation to these individuals who have assisted each week in providing passionate worship. CHILDREN‘S MUSICAL Music Camp will be held August 16-20. The cast and crew will be preparing the musical, ―Table for Five ... Thousand! The Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes‖ by Tom S. Long and Allen Pote. The musical will be presented August 21.

More details coming. For more information, contact staff member Lynnae Schatz. YOUTH RINGERS NEWS There are 13 talented 6th-12th graders who meet at 5:30 p.m. every Wednesday during the school year to prepare handbell anthems for worship and for the group‘s first concert, which was held Feb. 20. Members are Matthew Edwards, Steven Edwards, Michael Garcia, Jim Hughes, Alison Jyrkama, Julie Mulkey, Julie Pate, Hannah Schatz, Nathan Schatz, Sean Tobin, Kasey Zabadal and Kyle Zabadal. Thank you ringers for sharing your gifts. You are inspiring! The group's graduating senior, Matthew Edwards, has been with this group since its inception. I‘d like to take this opportunity to thank Matthew for sharing his gifts of music and leadership. –Lynnae Schatz, Director

CHILDREN‘S CHOIR Did You Know?· – There were 23 children who participated in Kinsmen‘s Children‘s Choir Ministry for the 2009-2010 school year. – The Sunshine Singers (4-years-old through 1st grade) offered 17 different anthems for 15 different worship services or concerts. – The Morning Glory Choir (2nd through 5th grade) offered 20 different anthems for 17 different worship services or concerts. The choir members will be singing for the last time this year on Music Ministry Sunday, May 16. They will celebrate the end of the year with a celebration on Saturday, May 22. Thanks be to God for these children and their parents for sharing the gifts God has given them!



Ready for the next steps? Next steps for Contagious Christians: 1. Pray for the people included in your circle of relationships. 2. Recognize the strength of your evangelism style. 3. Begin to see others in your life as people God loves. 4. Listen for "contagious moments" or opportunities to introduce faith into a conversation 5. Seek to deepen a relationship with

someone who does not have an active faith life. 6. Begin to ask yourself, "Has God put me in this relationship for a reason?" 7. Heighten your awareness of people you see everyday but do not know. 8. Begin a new relationship with someone you see everyday but do not know. 9. Practice telling your faith story in a way that is concise and engaging. 10. Memorize the parable of the Loving Father and the Lost Son.

11. Think of different ministries or events at Kinsmen that would be of interest to your friend. Pay attention to the Inspiring Worship, Experiencing Family, Sharing Grace sections of our weekly bulletin. 12. Invite a friend to prepare for Baptism, to worship regularly, to "experience family" through a small group or to find a way to "share grace" either in or through Kinsmen.

LO U I S I A NA L E T T E R F ROM S Y N OD A S SE M B LY April 21, 2010 Dear Brothers and Sisters, Greetings in the name of our living Lord Jesus Christ! On behalf of the members of Gethsemane Lutheran Church in St. Bernard Parish, LA, I want to express my heartfelt thanks for your partnership and support of the Lord‘s ministry here. It is folks like you from all around the country that have made it possible for us to serve the people of our community. We are truly grateful.

It was a joy to have you and others from around the synod come visit us this past Saturday. We love to entertain guests and meet new people. And your willingness to be among the thousands who have helped our community and its residents convinces us once again of the presence of God in the hearts of his people.

Whenever you are over this way, know that you are welcome to stop by and, if you‘re here over the weekend, please come worship with us.

We are looking forward to the future, following God‘s call to ever-changing ministries. We hope that we will be able to share in some of those together.

As part of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod Assembly 2010, Kinsmen attendees partnered with local organizations to continue the recovery of the New Orleans area nearly five years since Hurricane Katrina.

Your fellow servant in Christ, Pastor Jim Shears

D I SC OV E R YO U R S P I R I T U A L G I F T S We each have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us. Romans 12:6 God has given everyone two vitally important gifts. The first is the gift of faith in Jesus Christ, his work of redemption and thus forgiveness of sin. The second is the gift of one or more special abilities, which are to be used for the purpose of unifying the body of Christ and for the growth of God‘s Kingdom. These abilities are called spiritual gifts and they are received through our baptism.

Like other presents, it is impossible to fully appreciate and make use of our spiritual gifts until they have been opened. A Spiritual Gifts Assessment is available on the church website (see Sharing Grace tab).

Take a few moments to complete the assessment to determine your spiritual gift. Once the assessment is completed, put your gifts to use. All Christians are to work together, supporting one another. However, our gifts make us better prepared and equipped to perform in some areas of ministry over others. What type of ministry are you most effective in? If you are unable to print a copy of the assessment, please contact the church office.



The best of the rest WEDNESDAY FELLOWSHIP DINNER MAY MENU It‘s the last month of our Wednesday Night Fellowship Dinners before the Kinsmen kitchen shuts down for the summer, so join us the next three weeks from 6-7 p.m. in the Community Life Center.

water bottle rockets, tried to catch some fish and enjoyed a three-mile hike. Later in the month, the Scouts visited Scout Fair at Reliant Center. Troops, Crews and Packs from all over the council set up camping displays, cooking demonstrations and games for everyone to enjoy.

5/05: Lasagna 5/12: Barbecue Chicken 5/19: Surprise Menu

On Sunday, May 2, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Pack participated in the nationwide event, Lemonade Day. They were set up outside the Greenwood Forest Club House in the driveway. Thank you to all those who stopped by and supported the Pack.

Prices are: $6 (11 years and older) $4 (3-10 years) FREE (2 years and younger) KINSMEN SUMMER UNIVERSITY Take the opportunity to learn something new this summer. Kinsmen Summer University classes, which will be held June 9, 16, 23 and 30, will be Juggling, Handbell Ringing for Families, Nutrition, Floral Design, Wine Tasting and more. Watch the church website and worship bulletins for more details or contact staff member Lynnae Schatz. WEEKEND WARRIORS Senior Adults will be touring the Dunham Bible Museum and the Doll Museum, both located at Houston Baptist University, on Saturday, May 15. This weekend event should give working seniors a chance to attend. After lunch, the group is off to KUHF for a tour of Channel 8 and 88.7 FM. The cost of this trip is $5 per person, plus lunch. The bus will leave the church at 8:15 a.m. For reservations, call Peggy (281-469-1372), Hélène (281-444-7948) or Grace (281-440-4213). Make a reservation early, as there is a limit of 25 people. PACK 440 SCOUT NEWS The Cub Scouts enjoyed their April camping weekend at Lake Somerville. The weather was good, although there was a slight breeze at night coming off the lake. The Scouts launched a few

May is the last month of the scouting year. The Scouts will cross-over to their next rank at this month‘s pack meeting and a new scout year begins. The Webelos dens will have a den camping trip the weekend of May 21. For the new Webelos (the Bears that just crossed over), this will be the first den camping trip and marks the beginning of the preparation to become Boy Scouts. The month ends with a community service project. The Pack is participating in placing flags at the Veterans‘ cemetery on Sunday, May 30, in preparation for the Memorial Day observance. For information or questions about scouting please e-mail WORSHIP SERVANTS It takes at least 60 volunteers to lead our inspiring worship services every weekend. Worship servants include greeters, Welcome Center host, ushers, acolytes, lay assistants, communion assistants, lectors, Altar Guild members, communion bread bakers, Floral Ministry, Liturgical Arts Ministry (banners) and media. Your help is needed. If you can serve in any of these areas, please contact staff member Lynnae Schatz.

E-GIVING. IT‘S GIVING MADE SIMPLE. In today's wired world, many consumers have set aside their checkbooks in favor of electronic payment systems … and Kinsmen knows its worshipers are no exception! The Simply Giving® Program endorsed by Thrivent Financial Bank is for people who wish to have their offerings transferred electronically to their church‘s account. It's a convenient, safe and simple way to make automatic payments to the church through electronic funds transfer directly from bank accounts. This is especially helpful for people who travel and want to keep their intended offerings up-to-date. Kinsmen has approved this convenient giving opportunity, so contact the church office for more details. SUMMER CAMPS AT KINSMEN KINSMEN KIDS 12 Month Olds – 4-year-olds May 31 – Aug. 6 -Flexible plans to meet your needs -Pay for only the days you need -Discount for siblings -Providing quality care for over 25 years -Also offering year-round programs CAMP KINSMEN Kindergarten – 7th Grade June 7 – July 9 Aug. 2 – Aug. 18 -Fun field trips -Hot Lunch Wednesdays -Choose your weeks of care -Ask about our Before/After School Care and Kindergarten CAMP HOPE Kindergarten – 7th Grade July 12 – July 30 ―Catch the Wave‖ at Camp Hope this summer! Kids will enjoy a Biblically based, Christian day camp that is as fun as it is faithful. Registration forms for these three camps are available in the church office or via the Kinsmen website.


Carter Roth Joshua Menk Emma Holsberg Peter Jeremenko Shala Gradoni Kyle Zabadal Duane Miller Paul Feldman Amber Bean Tim Schroeder John Hjerpe Grant Kirkwood Bruce Erickson Dawn Harvey Steve Niemuth Michael Mc Coy Pastor Mark England Benjamin Slater Ashley Strickler Chase Hardy Kimberly Dogotch Kara Hambrick Sunetha Lueders Abigail Parr Jennifer Woody Mattison Maisel Callie Groth Dave Metting Stephanie Abt Rex VanHoose Katelyn Fox Matthew Dankert Winona Herwig Erik Ashmore Jeanne Nelsen Paul Botker Chris Stone Carolyn Snyder Sean Tobin

5/1 5/1 5/1 5/1 5/1 5/2 5/2 5/2 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/4 5/5 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/7 5/7 5/7 5/8 5/8 5/8 5/9 5/9 5/9 5/9 5/9 5/10 5/10 5/10 5/11 5/11 5/11 5/11

Annslee Pelton Kade Bryant Michelle Wehring Susan Converse Kyra Benesh Betty Smith Colby Williamson Amanda Hart Leora Bean Jimmy Ebner Jeanne Tobin Sherry Gatewood John Vindiola Monica Colson Melesa Cook Justin Clifford Edward Nielsen Jane Nordaker Shirley Rudy Jeffrey Watson Amber Holzman Maureen Maeschen Dale Parr Tiffany Osmon Carter Childress Aidan Nelsen Jason Lockhart Adam Niemuth Olivia Wilson Andrew Chow Chuck Nott Haily Heppner Morghan Zbranek Jonah Awbrey Maggie Awbrey Gina Gradoni Colby Hall Diane Nott Carol Boller

5/11 5/12 5/12 5/12 5/14 5/14 5/14 5/15 5/16 5/16 5/16 5/16 5/17 5/17 5/17 5/17 5/17 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/19 5/19 5/19 5/19 5/20 5/20 5/20 5/20 5/21 5/21 5/21 5/21 5/21 5/21

Shelly Meyer Amber Ratliff Doug Groth Amy Hambrick Kayla Mulkey Kyle Ashmore Jonathan Smith Sarah Smith Eric Fidler Amy Gibson John Bean Kathy Horst Ryan Parliament Timothy Timmerman Jr. Grace Petrucciani Robert Madsen Carma Gordon Colette Edwards Susan Dunens Bob Kloppenburg Lois Raschke Laura Maisel Tyler Wells Lila Garlin Joan Krueger Megan Cook Layne Luderman Katelynn Botker Nathan Bair Kate Sullivan Shannon Funke Ken Yeats Duane Meyer Zachary Roth Corrigan Roth Michael Fredrick Ford Sylvia Alewine Shawn Horst

*This list is compiled from church records. If your name is missing or the information listed above is incorrect, please notify the church office.

5/21 5/22 5/22 5/22 5/22 5/23 5/23 5/23 5/24 5/24 5/24 5/24 5/24 5/25 5/25 5/25 5/25 5/26 5/26 5/26 5/27 5/27 5/27 5/27 5/27 5/28 5/28 5/28 5/28 5/29 5/29 5/29 5/29 5/30 5/30 5/30 5/31 5/31


Steven Pate and Chase Wolter have been busy assembling our 2010 summer staff. Below are some details and dates you might want to remember. We are receiving applications for support staff through the first week of May. Support staff are rising 8th and 9th grade youth who are interested in serving as Camp Hope volunteers. Please pick up an application from The Messenger, and once completed, submit it to Pastor Mark A.S.A.P. Important Training Dates Disciple Project (Paid Staff Training) June 27-July 1. Registration Deadline is Sunday, May 9 Grace Training (for those who can’t attend DP) the week of July 5 Support Staff Training – the second half of the week of July 5 More details will follow concerning Paid and Support Staff Training. Kinsmen Camp Hope: Catch The Wave!!! July 12-16 “Water Life” July 19-23 “Water Voyage” July 26 - July 30 “Living Water” Camper registration forms are available in the Kinsmen office or the church website.

CONGREGATIONAL HELP WITH CAMP HOPE Mentors and Decorations The whole congregation can join in the fun of preparing for Camp Hope. We are collecting beach and water-themed decorations for Camp Hope. If you have this type of decoration that you would like to donate, please drop it off at the Camp Hope display in the Narthex. If you would like to serve as a Camp Hope mentor, please contact Pastor Mark ( A Camp Hope mentor keeps in contact with a paid staff person throughout camp, listens to their joys and struggles, encourages them and provides them with any assistance that is appropriate.


On Sunday, May 2, at the 11 a.m. worship service, we celebrated the Affirmation of Baptism through the Rite of Confirmation for the following youth: Valeria Avalos Emily Baker Katie Botker Kari Cominsky Megan Cook Josie Coote Steven Edwards Caroline Ehlers Stephanie Gealow Matthew Gillette Amanda Hamric Clay Jacobs Avery Mueller-Jarosh Caymann Johnston Victoria Karker Carly Miller

Conner Morgan Elizabeth Sara Nona Stephen Nott Grace Ann Petrucciani Kolena Robertson Cory Roth Zach Roth Hannah Schatz Natalie Schroeder Caleb Staff Colton Toney Hunter Watson Kirsten Williamson Kyle Woods Trevor Young

We give our heartfelt thanks to their Small Group Leaders Sherri Botker, Tammy Hamric, Ronnie Coote, Russ Petrucciani, Jane Robertson, Angi Williamson, Dorcas Staff and Michele Watson for faithfully shepherding their groups for three years. The Confirmation banquet was a wonderful experience for all who attended. Thank you to Joan Horner, Helga Braun, Linda Martens, Dolores Wendt, Chrisanne McAuliffe and others for making it a truly special evening Thank you Julie Hughes, Jane Jacobi, Daniel Ehlers and others who put together the picture booklets, certificates, PowerPoint and navigated the many administrative tasks that enhance this milestone. Thank you to the Liturgical Arts and Flower Teams for sharing your gifts to help make this celebration special.

CROSS TRAINING 7 - 8:15 PM Wednesdays in May (May 5, May 12 and May 19) All 6th and 7th Grade Youth are invited to join us for “Cross Training� in the Great Room. Join us for a fun time of fellowship and games.


THE DISCIPLE PROJECT: Camp Hope Training June 27 - July 1, 2010 on the campus of Texas Lutheran University This year, one opportunity for Camp Hope training will be through The Disciple Project. This will be not only an opportunity for us to train for Camp Hope but also an opportunity for us to spend a week with other youth in Bible study, worship, fellowship and Christian community. We will also hear from engaging speakers and inspirational musicians throughout the week. While we are in the training sessions for Camp Hope, others at The Disciple Project will be focusing on interest areas as varied as sports, music, art, the environment, peer ministry, and preaching. If interested, put your name on the sign-up sheet located at The Messenger. If you cannot come to The Disciple Project you will attend “Grace Training” at Kinsmen during the week of July 5.

PROM WITH JESUS May 21-22 — All NIGHT The greatest party of the year, "Prom With Jesus," is May 21 & 22 ... and yes, it is an ALL-NIGHT party. If you are in senior high or are a rising 9th grader, this event is for you. We dress up in our finest and go out to dinner. Bring a change of clothes because after dinner, we will come back to Kinsmen and play games, have late night bible study and worship and have fun all night long! Please sign up on The Messenger by Wednesday, May 19, and invite a friend. For more information, contact staff member Kristen Schulze at

EASTER BREAKFAST Thank you to Mary Collins and all who helped with the Easter Breakfast. The money raised will help Camp Hope serve as a ministry to and with youth from kindergarten through college. Thank you to all in the congregation who supported our ministry.





5:30 PM

8:15 AM & 11 AM

Informal Worship

Traditional Worship

with Communion

with Communion on 1st, 3rd and 5th Sunday of each month 9:30 AM

Contemporary Worship with Communion

9:30 AM

Education Hour Classes for all ages (August - May) 9 - 11 AM

Fellowship Breakfast Community Life Center

Connection is a monthly publication of Kinsmen Lutheran Church. Deadline for submitting news is the 15th day of each month or the previous church business day if the deadline falls on the weekend or on a church holiday. Articles are preferred electronically, but may be faxed or hand-delivered to the church office.

Kinsmen Staff



Reach a Staff Member directly by dialing 281-444-3127, plus their extension

Monday - Friday 9 AM - 5 PM

281-444-3126 Phone 281-444-1733 FAX

Rev. Jeffery Alvestad, Senior Pastor — Ext. 18

Linda Thomas, Principal Organist

Rev. Mark England, Youth and Family Ministry — Ext. 24

Stevie Berryman, Director of Adult Hand Bells — Ext. 22

Bruce Elijah, Associate in Ministry — Ext. 15

Elizabeth Marks, Traditional Worship Coordinator — Ext. 22

Susan Converse, Director of Administration — Ext. 17

Kristen Schulze, Contemporary Worship Co-coordinator

Lynnae Schatz, Director of Congregational Life — Ext. 43

Timothy Browning, Contemporary Worship Co-coordinator

Julie Hughes, Administrative Assistant — Ext. 10

J.D. McCollom, Media Team Coordinator

Susan Emfinger, Media and Communications Coordinator — Ext. 21

Sherri Botker, Director, Kinsmen Kids Preschool/Mother‘s Day Out — Ext. 23

Irene Baasen, Accounting and Financial Reports — Ext. 14

Gundi Talbert, Director, Before & After School Kinsmen — Ext. 35

Stefanie Gibbons, Children‘s Ministries Coordinator — Ext. 15

Mayra Olvera, Asst. Director of Before & After School Kinsmen — Ext. 36

Joan Horner, Parish Assistant/Hospitality — Ext. 12

Ruben Cervantes, Custodian Lonnie Davis, Custodian

May 2010  

May 2010 Connection