Published by the Missouri District of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
What’s in a District Budget: Income and Expenses
by Peter Krege
I often wonder what our LCMS members know about our district and our Synod. If I asked, what would the average Missouri Synod Lutheran tell me about where their offerings go that are sent on for “missions”? The word Synod means “walking together.” A glimpse into the finances of the district and the Synod can give a sense of the complexity of this walk together. A great part of this walk is dedicated to reaching the lost both abroad and in our backyards right here in Missouri. Yet the mandate of the Synod and district is not just to send missionaries into all the world, it is also to support the work of our congregations and church workers. In support of this mandate, the Missouri District budget has a number of income sources. Some of these are: • $2,636,250 – (69 percent) comes from the offering plate in the form of congregational support.
• $362,390 – (9 percent) comes from agreements with partner ministries such as the Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) and the Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis. • $342,200 – (9 percent) comes from endowments, bequests and restricted funds. Endowments support mission work within the district, student aid to elementary, high school students, seminarians and others pursuing church work as teachers, deaconesses and other church work professions. Certain gifts are given to the district for use for specific projects or purposes. Many restricted gifts are given to the district with the help of a gift planner and are bequests stipulated in a donor’s will. The LCMS Foundation assists individuals with the preparation of estate plans for those who wish to contribute to ministry areas within our synodical structure. • $451,125 – (12 percent) comes from fees for conferences, gatherings and conventions. Some events are required by the synodical Handbook. Many of the events are on a three year cycle in relation to the synodical convention. The chart below shows the major required upcoming events.
Upcoming Church Worker Events Date Event Who Attends
October 11-14, 2011
Professional Church Workers Conference (PCW)
Teachers, ordained ministers and commissioned ministers
$115 registration fee + $86 per night lodging
June 3-5, 2012
Ordained ministers, commissioned ministers, lay delegates
Assessment based on communicant membership – estimated cost $1.25$1.50 per communicant member
October 2012 Dates TBD November 18-20, 2012
East and West Pastors Ordained ministers Conferences Educators Teachers and other Conference commissioned ministers Ordained ministers, Synod convention commissioned ministers, lay delegates
Est. ~ $90 plus lodging $110-$120 registration + lodging estimated at $76 per room per night Assessment based on communicant membership – estimated cost $2.25$2.50 per communicant member
October 2013 Dates TBD
Combined Pastors Conference
Est. ~ $90 plus lodging
March 2014 Dates TBD
Lutheran Education Association (LEA)
Teachers and other commissioned ministers
Est. ~ $280 registration + lodging
The expenses in the district budget break down as follows: • $560,000 Synod Support – This represents the district’s support of the national synodical office in support of all the national and international initiatives of The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod including international support of missionaries, partner churches and world relief efforts, as well as support of the Concordia University System. • $1,251,750 Missions – This represents mission endeavors within the boundaries of the state of Missouri. These endeavors are started by local congregations, but need broader initial support to become healthy and self-sustaining. Also included in this category are new mission starts, new ministry starts, urban, ethnic and campus ministry. District personnel also help congregations assess ministry opportunities within their communities. • $325,490 Leadership – This includes the work done through our partnership with the Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis in the areas of social service outreach and volunteerism. It also includes training youth and youth workers and our education department personnel, who help Lutheran schools and preschools in their work with children and educators. • $138,800 Communications – This category includes production of this publication as well as newsletters and internet based communications such as the district web page and Facebook. • $714,000 Services to Congregations – This category includes support of congregations, schools and church workers through the office of the president, the vice presidents, the circuit counselors, the conflict resolution executive, the family life and youth executive and the district boards. It also includes expenses for advance sites and student aid. • $397,100 Administration and Equipment – This category includes office expenses, depreciation on vehicles, equipment and campus properties, direct gift counseling, and rent.
continued on page 16
The Missouri District Online
Regular Online Items: installations and ordinations, celebrations, obituaries, calendar and resources www.facebook.com/MissouriDistrictLCMS
In this Issue:
Page 2 - District Convention Information
Page 8 - Walther League Reunion
Page 16 - Joplin Cleanup
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From t he president’s desk
“This is to let you know that you need to look into one of your churches (name given but omitted). The pastor there is causing a lot of hard feelings among the members and several families have left the church because of his behavior…There are a multitude of problems with this pastor. They are going to have to do something soon or the church will fold. I am a member of the church but do not want to cause hard feelings that is why I am doing this anonymously.” President Ray Mirly What would you do if you received such an email? Many of you might say that the District President should contact the leaders. Others would suggest that he should contact the pastor. But wait, the person who sent the email was not willing to identify himself or herself. So, perhaps this is just the opinion of one person. Perhaps the issue that the person has with the pastor has come about because of special circumstances in his life that are well known by the Board of Elders and elected leaders and they are actively supporting the pastor to help him successfully deal with the issue. Is there not an Eighth Commandment issue with this email? This person believes that the pastor is not being faithful to his call. If the person believes this to be true, then the person must go to the pastor to discuss the concerns he/she has. The person may or may not know the whole story. There may be far more going on than they know. If this person is so concerned about the congregation, then the person should step forward and share this concern first with the pastor, since the criticism is specifically against him. For a congregation to be healthy, members need to be engaged in its ministry, not just attending worship services, Bible class, Sunday school or the Christian day school. Engaged means serving on boards and committees, volunteering for special clean-up days, ushering, serving on the Altar Guild and attending voters meetings where the congregation’s business is conducted. So to speak, a congregation is no stronger than its weakest member. Anonymous may feel better having written and sent the email. He may believe he’s done something positive to address what he perceives to be a problem. But, in reality, anonymous letters and emails normally do nothing positive. It is vital that you, the members of the congregation, openly share your praise and concerns with your pastor, lay leaders and at voters meetings. Engaging in gossip, anonymous correspondence, You shall not give false and assumptions without discussion is testimony against your sinful behavior (Eighth Commandment). They can also be sins against other neighbor. What does this commandments such as the First, Fourth mean? We should fear and and Fifth Commandments. love God so that we do not To be helpful to your pastor and congregation, you will need to speak in tell lies about our neighbor, a way that they in turn can speak with betray him, slander him, you. Without the ability to speak back and forth it is normally very difficult to or hurt his reputation, but resolve issues. I encourage all of you to defend him, speak well of speak up and share your thoughts and ideas. Don’t be anonymous. Contribute him, and explain everything your ideas and gifts so they can be added in the kindest way. to all of the others provided by your fellow members.
From Luther’s Small Catechism – The Eighth Commandment
St. Paul’s, Fulton, A nniversary Blessed are those who dwell in your house, ever singing your praise! Ps. 84:4 Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the building of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church at
10:30 a.m., Sept. 11, 1703 Plaza Drive, Fulton, MO 65251. Meal and program to follow. Please RSVP by Aug. 29, at (573) 642-2856 or email@example.com.
President’s Prayer List Please join me in prayer this month. Daily pray God will bless our Synod’s President, Rev. Dr. Matthew Harrison. Pray that the Holy Spirit will move the hearts of Missouri District pastors, congregation leaders and members to support the North Korean Mission Emphasis. Pray for all the children and their families who attended VBS this summer, that the Holy Spirit will work faith in their hearts to believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Pray for the individuals involved in inviting the unchurched VBS families to attend Sunday school, worship services, and junior and adult confirmation classes. Pray for God to bless Sunday school leaders, teachers and helpers as they prepare for a new year of classes and students. Move the hearts of parents to value Sunday school for their children, making weekly attendance a high priority. Thank God for all the Lutheran preschools, elementary schools, Lutheran high schools, Concordia universities and seminaries. Pray that He bless their new academic year. Ask God to protect the men and women of the United States Armed Forces. Pray God to bless Rev. Gregory Mech, Immanuel, Joplin, his staff and congregation as they continue to minister to members and community recovering from the devastating tornado. Pray that God will bless us with seasonable weather and a bountiful harvest. Pray God to bless all involved in starting many new missions and ministries in the Missouri District. Pray that God will bless your congregation’s pastor, full-time workers, lay leaders and volunteers. Pray that God will bless all of us with generous hearts to give gifts of time, talents and treasures in thanksgiving to Him for all that He does for our spiritual and physical lives.
Missouri District Convention Calendar and Updates Congregations need to plan for the 2012 Missouri District Convention. The convention is June 3-5, 2012, at the University Plaza Hotel and Convention Center in Springfield, Mo. Nominations for President and First Vice President are due Dec. 3, 2011. Nominations for Secretary, Treasurer, Board of Directors, Committee on Nominations are due Jan. 3, 2012. Lay delegate forms are due in the district office Jan. 2, 2012. As your congregation schedules board or voter meetings, please keep these items and dates in mind. Congregation presidents and secretaries will be sent nomination forms. The forms also will be posted on the district website when they become available. The convention theme is “Life Together.”
Good Shepherd, Cape Girardeau, Leases Ground For Cell Tower
A 150-foot-high cross now stands on the property of Good Shepherd Lutheran Chapel, Cape Girardeau. It is a cell tower, a “stealth” cell tower–it doesn’t look like a cell tower. Rev. Barry Pfanstiel, pastor of Good Shepherd, explains, “This project began about a year ago when we were approached with the concept of leasing a portion of our land for the next 50 years. A picture of what the cross would look like was already presented. We agreed. And then the preliminary steps leading to its construction were carried out by the company leasing the property. There were numerous legal and civic hurdles. But at last, the way was clear. From the start, we were excited about having this huge witness to our faith erected for so many to see. We can now say to the world, ‘You can find us so easily. Just come to the church with the cross.’” There will, of course, be a monthly check received by Good Shepherd for this. The congregation has specified that one half of this “windfall” money will be used beyond itself in various mission projects and needs. Plus, as an added feature, cell phone reception in the area just got a whole lot better! There is room within the inner structure of the upper portion for a total of four wireless companies.
Are There Still Worker Priests?
Congregation Chai v’Shalom (Life and Peace) is a congregation of the Missouri District reaching out to the Jewish community of St. Louis, one of the most difficult mission fields there is. As a congregation with a special emphasis, budgeting is a particularly challenging and rewarding experience. The congregation is 13 years old, yet continues to be small, growing by single digits, and at the same time coping with a mobile society, where people leave by ones and twos as well. So it remains a congregation with resources unable to pay a pastor. Enter a growing trend in our church body–the reality of calling a worker-priest. Budgeting for a congregation that wants to grow and look to the future is particularly challenging, because it needs to have a realistic understanding of what it costs to pay for the ministries of the congregation, including that of a full-time pastor. In doing so, it is ever apparent that the congregation will not “make budget” every year. That can be frustrating, especially for a people who sincerely desire to pay the pastor, recognizing that “the laborer deserves his wages” (1 Tim. 5:18). But despite the frustration, there is also great blessing as members realize total dependence upon God in Christ, both for their care and for the care of the pastor.
Chai v’Shalom has been blessed by individuals and other churches that have come alongside to help support the ministry and mission. That providence of God continues to reinforce the fact that they are not alone as a congregation, but are part of a much bigger Church, a Church that God uses to further His purposes. And there are other blessings to being a congregation with a worker-priest. One is that the pastor is often gone on Sundays! That doesn’t somehow sound right, but Pastor Kevin Parviz, as part of raising support for this ministry and others, is often invited to guest preach and teach in other congregations around the Synod. This gives him the opportunity to expand the ministry and vision through other churches, but also allows the congregations to be served by others, including students from the seminary and especially Rev. Dr. Ellis Rottmann, who often fills the pulpit in the pastor’s absence. These are wonderful men who offer different perspectives and styles in their preaching, while at the same time affirming the Gospel of grace in Christ Jesus that is the constant of the Christian life. A congregation with many resources could forget the larger Church as part of the mission of God. God has not given Chai v’Shalom that opportunity. Praise Him!
Budgeting Through Difficult Economic Times
Distr ict News
When the economy is down and times are hard it is important to know how to live on a budget and practice frugality. This is true for everyone, from individual households, to corporate America, to non-profit organizations like ours – Lutheran Family and Children’s Services of Missouri (LFCS). For so many, the past few years of the down economy have been challenging. Ironically, during this economic downturn, demand for many programs and services offered by LFCS has risen while funding has declined. This has resulted in the need to review our business plan and to adapt. We have learned much through these challenging years. Here are some of the steps taken and lessons learned: • Stay true to the mission LFCS made the decision to focus on our core services and keep the central focus on our mission. We believe God in Jesus Christ can use us to bring healing and hope. Our programs were streamlined to focus on healthy children, strong families, and solid communities through adoption programs, foster care services, crisis pregnancy support, youth mentoring, counseling, disaster response, quality child care and advocacy. This meant cutting programs that didn’t fall within our mission. Remaining focused on our Christian mission and services (and those with a proven track record) was imperative. • Keep funding streams diverse Through the years, we have made diversifying funding streams a priority, which has helped our bottom line when one area (i.e. investment income or annual giving) takes a hit. LFCS receives its funding through government revenue (grants and contracts); client fees; United Way support; contributions from individuals, church congregations, corporations and foundations; special event revenue; tax credit donation programs; and investment income. Focusing too heavily on any one area makes our budget vulnerable. The old saying, “don’t put all of your eggs in one basket,” is still wise financial advice. • Review, Rethink and Make Adjustments The economic climate made us review what were doing, how were doing it and make tough decisions. To stay afloat, you have to be prepared to change the way you have done certain things, to consider new and innovative ways to get results, and most importantly, to keep an open mind and remain flexible. Some adjustments LFCS made included shifting client care from one funding source to another and re-assigning staff to temporary duties to protect the long-term viability of needed services. • Collaborate when possible LFCS has active partnerships with several organizations, including The Lutheran High School Association, Lutheran Senior Services, Humanitri and The Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis. We are always seeking ways to walk more closely together, caring for individuals from birth to eternity, educating children, addressing the concerns and needs of our communities – this is the work of Lutheran Caring through our collective organizations. Collaborating makes sense from a program/ service perspective and also from a financial perspective. • Communicate effectively and honestly Staff, board members, volunteers, clients – all individuals who work with and benefit from your organization – will have concerns about the financial position of an institution during difficult economic times. Often salary freezes will be instated, benefits may need to be reduced, layoffs may be necessary, and programs and services may need to be cut. Through these challenging circumstances, it is important to communicate regularly, honestly and specifically to all the groups affected. You don’t have to go into great detail with each group, but providing information and laying out action steps – good and bad – keeps everyone on the same page and promotes a team approach to weathering the storms together. In a difficult economy, there are many positive actions to better position your church or organization – actions to work through economic recovery. Don’t sit back and let a recession freeze your efforts; rather, be a leader and proactively seek strategies that make your organization smarter, more effective and more efficient. Above all, remember that our loving God has a purpose for your church or organization and all who come in contact with it!
The Voice of Missouri
Distr ict News
St. Charles County Lutherans For Life R aises $31,000 for Thrive–Pregnancy R esource Center Mobile Unit of St. Louis
What are local Lutherans For Life (LFL) chapters doing to promote life and be Gospel motivated voices for life? Some of them are raising funds for local pregnancy resource centers, maternity homes, and other Gospel-focused ministries that are for life. One representative recently visited with Delores Desemone, president of the St. Charles County Lutherans For Life Chapter. This chapter extended an invitation to all the Lutheran churches in their circuit to raise support for the Thrive-Pregnancy Resource Center’s new Mobile Center that offers complimentary ultrasounds and free pregnancy testing. They organized a Baby Bottle Drive and raised over $31,000. The project began after chapter leaders were approached by Rev. Scott Schmieding of Immanuel Lutheran Church, St. Charles, Mo. Rev. Schmeiding has battled cancer, losing his tongue in the process. He has a real appreciation for the gift of life, and one reason he wanted to do something exciting in support of life. Deciding to raise funds to support the Pregnancy Mobile Unit of Thrive-Pregnancy Resource Center, Rev. Schmieding personally contacted each pastor in his circuit, inviting each congregation to get involved. Desemone stated that their LFL chapter began with prayer, as they do with all their programs and projects. They also organized a group of prayer partners, most of whom were confined to their homes due to illness. They obtained 1,000 empty baby bottles from Thrive, included instructions in each bottle, and displayed the bottles in high traffic areas at each congregation. Members were invited to pick up a baby bottle and fill it with change. Then they were to return the baby bottles to the church. The 1,000 baby bottles were gone at the end of the first week, so they ordered another 500. Those 1,500 bottles were in constant circulation for the next four weeks. Each church had a liaison, an individual who was very important to the link between LFL and the congregation. Desemone stated that she and other LFL leaders spent many hours on the phone encouraging the church leaders, telling the prayer partners what was happening, telling those involved how much money had been raised, collecting baby bottles that were filled with coins, counting the funds, and delivering more baby bottles to the churches. Of course, they also promoted the project in the bulletin and church newsletters. Those involved included 10 churches, six elementary schools, one high school and the Lutheran retirement center. There were also five families who heard about it and wanted to collect from friends and neighbors, none of whom were Lutheran. Lutherans For Life is thankful for all the work that the LFL local chapters do in their communities. Lives are being changed and transformed because of the work of LFL chapters and Lutheran members at many congregations and schools. Thank you. May the Lord continue to bless you and keep you in His care.
Heit’s Point Outdoor Festival - 2011 Camp Changes Lives People came from all over, young and old, to this summer’s Outdoor Festival at Heit’s Point. Pastor Sam Powell, Trinity Lutheran, Jefferson City, speaker for this year’s festival, gave an inspirational personal testimony. Growing up in California, Mo., he attended camp as a youth and as a young adult served as a counselor. He shared his story of how God worked through Heit’s Point and the people he met here to lead him to be a pastor. He met his wife, Lisa, when they were both counselors. Camp brings people together in God’s beautiful creation. Rev. Powell shared how many of the counselors have continued into ministry–teachers, DCEs, pastors, etc. His message touched many of those who attended, who also experienced how camp changed their lives. First time guests at Heit’s Point socialized with old friends and met new ones. “Joyful Sounds” choir from St. Paul’s in Concordia, Mo., provided majestic music.
Roger and Sharon Mailand came from Seward, Neb., “because this place has become part of their lives.” Heit’s Point Program Director Leah Hutcheson shared, “This place holds a special place in my heart, because here people are reached by and with Christ while enjoying God’s creation.”
On display was an wood cutout of the Lord’s Prayer, built by Kirk Thaemert, to raise funds supporting the mission to proclaim the work of Christ. Thaemert’s life also has been changed by his experiences at Heit’s Point. It was a great day, a great festival. It was “for all ages.” It was a time to celebrate. It was a time, as Delbert Rinne said, for “God to be glorified.”
New Student Welcome and Furniture Give-Away
Friday, August 19: P ick Up Furniture Saturday, August 20: Give-Away
Once a year, International Student Ministry of St. Louis (ISM-St. Louis) volunteers welcome new international students to town with free used furniture and household items. Most students arrive in St. Louis with just a few suitcases. They appreciate meeting new friends from the United States while gathering some helpful articles to furnish their apartments. Suggestions for furniture and household item donations: dressers, desks, beds/futons, mattresses, small tables, chairs, small sofas, bookcases, pots and pans, rice cookers and other small kitchen appliances, dishes, cups, glasses, silverware, bakeware, bowls, lamps, bed linens, towels, kitchen gadgets, rugs and bicycles. ISM-St. Louis volunteers pick up used furniture and household items on Friday, Aug. 19. They ask churches to gather smaller items together so they can make one stop to pick them up. Large furniture items are picked up from donor’s homes. On Saturday, Aug. 20, volunteers set up everything in a Washington University parking garage, and distribute the items to new international students and help take the items to their apartments. Anyone with a pick-up truck or van would be a great help. The whole event is a lot of fun! For more information about donating furniture, or if you would like to volunteer to help welcome students, set up the donations at the college or help deliver items to apartments, please send an email to Karen Davis at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (314) 452-6406.
Distr ict News Teens of Our R edeemer R each Out
Salem Ladies Guild Celebrates
When one of the teens in our small inner city congregation, Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Kansas City, Mo., wanted to do a mission project, we did some research to see what was possible for us with little to no budget and language barriers blending Liberian, Spanish and English-speaking Lutherans. There had been an article about an organization, “Soles for Souls,” that collects shoes for both domestic and international impoverished areas, especially after a disaster. We checked it out. This project did not require money and when we found a local drop-off point that would not require shipping, the vote from the youth was unanimous. They added collecting eyeglasses for the Lions Club and got the word out. Five churches blessed us with donations: Mount Calvary, Excelsior Springs; St. Stephens, Liberty; Holy Cross, Kansas City North; St. John’s, Farley; and St. Matthew’s youth in Lees Summit. As our people came in every Sunday with bags of shoes and we carried in these other donations, our little parish soon was bursting with shoes everywhere. On June 11, we met to sort and rubber band more than 400 pairs of shoes and 70 pairs of eyeglasses! Soda, pizza and cookies made it a morning of fun and fellowship with a real sense of being able to serve and work together. Praise God for all those who helped make this project a success.
Salem Lutheran Church, Affton, celebrated its 100th anniversary last year. The Ladies Guild was organized shortly after the congregation was organized to plan ways to help the church. The women celebrated June 2 with a party, and all wore hats, as was the tradition 100 years ago. It was a fun day for everyone. The Ladies Guild hosts fundraisers like luncheons and rummage sales, and the money sometimes goes to special projects, but usually to a general fund for both the school and the church. They raise thousands every year. Marguerite Meyer of the Ladies Guild said, “There’s also Salem’s Altar Guild and we kind of compete throughout the year to see who can raise more money for the church.”
Going Out on a Limb and Trusting God
Before lowering the fee, church leaders trusted God by inviting the teenagers in an ESL class to attend the retreat for free. Mission partners were invited to support a teenager and the response was $700 in scholarship funds. On the first day of the retreat, the shortage was about $1,300. Trusting God that going out on a limb had been the right choice, donations were requested throughout the retreat. Since the theme of the retreat was “The Fruit of the Spirit,” a tree with missing fruit (each representing $100) indicated the amount still needed. As offerings came in, fruit was added. On the last day, one piece of fruit was missing. Before the retreat ended, the last piece of fruit was added to the tree. More than 80 attended the retreat. The speaker for the adult program was Jim Found, a former missionary to Taiwan who speaks Mandarin fluently. He flew in from Colorado where he is retired. Volunteers for the children’s programs included members of Immanuel, Olivette. “God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it” (1 Cor. 10:13 NIV). A story in the Old Testament to encourage you is in Exodus 16. We might be a little afraid of what will happen, but we can trust in God for everything!
“Can we really trust God to provide the money for that?” “Can we go out on a limb and do something we’ve never done before—even though it costs more money?” These questions were on the minds of the retreat planning committee members. Members at Light of Christ Lutheran Chinese Mission, Olivette, Mo., wanted a summer spiritual retreat at Camp Wartburg in Waterloo, Ill. During past retreats, teaching DVDs were the main sessions. Going out on a limb and trusting God, the committee wanted a live speaker at the adult program. To raise funds, an auction was held. Members were encouraged to bring their “treasures” and invite friends. The auction was a success with proceeds exceeding $1,500, enough to fly in a speaker. The registration forms were distributed. The registration fee of $84, which covered only lodging and meals, was expensive for some families, so those with financial need were encouraged to talk to Pastor Paul Shaw. Despite that, the church trusted God, not knowing where the extra funds would come from. Registration was slow. Two weeks before the deadline, one member felt most people would not say if they could not pay, and would just not attend. He had been at another Christian camp where the registration fee was minimal and all other expenses were met from offerings. His suggestion was to follow that method and set the registration fee at $20. The new idea had a slight majority, so registration was revised. The committee chairperson, who had voted against the adjustment, said “The change is not just for the change of registration form, but also for the test of my faith.” He was trusting God with a humble heart. A donation box was set up. The budget for the retreat was around $8,000. Money came in slowly but regularly. Some paid the entire amount; some paid only the registration fee.
Salem Ladies Guild of Affton don hats in celebration of 100 years of service and fellowship.
Secretaries in Christ Fall Workshop LCMS church secretaries and support staff at a Lutheran organization interested in joining others to discuss what we have in common are invited to the Secretaries in Christ Fall Workshop on Monday, Sept. 12, at the Missouri District office. This workshop will focus on church work, furthering education, how to ask those hard questions about your job, and how to communicate with grace. The cost is $20 per person, and breakfast and lunch are included. To register or for more information, please visit the Secretaries in Christ website, www.secretariesinchrist.giving.officelive.com, or call Lisa at (618) 939-6480. Save the Date: The Winter 2012 Retreat will be Jan. 20-22, 2012, at Camp Wartburg in Waterloo, Ill. Visit the website for details. Are you a secretary in central or western Missouri? Would you like to have these workshops closer to you? Contact Lisa at (618) 939-6480 and let her know!
The Voice of Missouri
Com mun ications Missouri District Staff
President Rev. Dr. Ray Mirly Ray.Mirly@mo.lcms.org
Assistant to the President – Family Life and Youth Ministry/Congregational Health Rev. Gene Wyssmann email@example.com
Assistant to the President – Missions/Congregational Services Rev. Dr. Stuart W. Brassie Stuart.Brassie@mo.lcms.org
Financial Specialist Ruth Ann Grebe RuthAnn.Grebe@mo.lcms.org
Assistant to the President – School Ministry Dennis Gehrke Dennis.Gehrke@mo.lcms.org Vice President – Lutheran Church Extension Fund Dennis A. Klussman Dennis.Klussman@lcef.org
Publications Specialist/Voice Editor Jennifer Krupp Jennifer.Krupp@mo.lcms.org firstname.lastname@example.org Education Specialist Martha Schellin Martha.Schellin@mo.lcms.org
Assistant to the President – Financial Planning and Control Peter Krege Peter.Krege@mo.lcms.org
Pastoral Support Specialist Donna Seipp Donna.Seipp@mo.lcms.org Office and Human Resources Manager Karen Siegel Karen.Siegel@mo.lcms.org
St. Louis Social Service Outreach and Volunteer Coordinator Rev. Matthew Schultz Matthew.Schultz@mo.lcms.org (Look for the district’s new phone numbers at mo.lcms.org or ask your church office after Aug. 15.)
Events Specialist Sue Thompson Sue.Thompson@mo.lcms.org
New Subscription/Change of Address Form The Voice of Missouri is provided free of charge to all Missouri District–LCMS congregation member households. Check with your church office to have your address added or changed. If you are not a Missouri District congregation member and wish to receive a copy, forward the completed form below to:
The Missouri District–LCMS, Attn.: VOICE Subscriptions, 660 Mason Ridge Center Drive, Suite 100, St. Louis, MO 63141-8557 or send the same information by e-mail to email@example.com Please use this form for a change of address as well as a new subscription. Please send a new subscription. Please remove my name from your subscription list. Subscribe to receive Please change my address to the one listed below. The Voice electronically at mo.lcms.org (I have also provided my old address.) Name Church Name and City Current Address City
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New Phone Numbers for the District Office The Missouri District offices are moving to the third floor of The Lutheran Hour building mid-August. The address is still the same (even Suite 100), but our phone numbers will change. As of the printing of The Voice, the only new number known is the main line, (314) 590-6200. Please look for an email or check the district website for staff numbers after August 15. Page 6
Who Are We? The Missouri District consists of 299 congregations. The Vision: Congregations of the Missouri District—LCMS partnering as one church, united in doctrine, ready, equipped and acting to fulfill the Great Commission in their unique setting with their unique people. The Mission: The Missouri District—LCMS is to serve and encourage congregations to fulfill the Great Commission and promote unity of the true faith.
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BuilD a traDition oF giving With your chilDren Kirk Mueller
anD granDchilDren While you support ministries!
A Family Gift Fund is your personal ministry fund. It provides you and your family the opportunity to recommend ministries you will benefit as well as the amounts and timing of your gifts. A Family Gift Fund can help you witness to your children about the faithful generosity of God’s caring love in our lives. You may establish a Family Gift Fund using any asset. The LCMS Foundation administers the fund and makes the distributions, no matter how many organizations you want to help.
Kirk Mueller—LCMS Foundation Gift Planning Counselor 11645 Benham Road, St. Louis, MO 63136 (314) 704-4389 Kirk.email@example.com
Distr ict News
The Missouri District Lutheran Laymen’s League The Bible on Trial: Beyond a R easonable Doubt
New Project Connect Booklet
From the time of Christ to today, Christianity and the Bible have been under attack. Detractors say the Bible is full of lies, contradictions, half-truths and myths. This Bible study, produced by Lutheran Hour Ministries for television, counters many of the challenges through archaeology and history. The study was written by Craig Parton, a Christian apologist and active trial lawyer, and is assisted by Dr. Paul Maier of Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Mich.; Dr. Randall Price of Liberty University, Lynchburg, Va.; Dr. Jeff Kloha of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.; and Joel Lampe of The Bible Museum, Goodyear, Ariz. The four-session study is laid out like to a trial – with challenges and rebuttals. In the end, participants, much like jurors, must make their own decision based on the testimony presented. After recent television airings, viewers were asked to log on and answer the question, “Having watched the program, do you believe that the Bible we have today is what the original authors wrote?” Of the responses, 91 percent said “yes,” 7 percent said “no” and 2 percent were not sure. The Bible study guide and video can be downloaded for free or purchased at www.lhmmen.com.
Unfortunately, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has been in the news a lot over the last few years. A debilitating anxiety disorder, this condition results from exposure to a major trauma involving death or the threat of significant injury. In The Conflict at Home: Confronting PTSD, Pastor and Chaplain Steven Hokana has written a Project Connect booklet for those grappling with this life-unsettling disorder and encourages those who support afflicted individuals. To order booklets or for more information about Project Connect, log on to www.lhm.org/projectconnect.
U.S. Hispanic Ministry
Lutheran Hour Ministries’ Hispanic Ministry is called Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones (CPTLN), or Christ For All Nations. This ministry’s primary focus is to share the saving message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the Hispanics in the United States who do not know Him as their Lord and Savior. The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod started the first Hispanic mission in Texas in 1926. Currently, there are 145 LCMS churches conducting Hispanic ministry in the United States. The first Spanish version of The Lutheran Hour aired in 1941. Dr. Andrés MelenMissouri District LLL Convention dez was the first Spanish-language speaker. Until his retirement in 1972, his voice was The 2011 district convention will be Sept. 23-25 at the Port Arrowhead Resort, heard on the radio program throughout Latin America, Spain and the United States. Lake Ozark, Mo. The resort features two outdoor pools, one indoor pool, children’s Hispanics, with a population of approximately 41.3 million, make the United States wading pool with a waterfall, two hot tubs, miniature golf, seasonal supervised chil- the fifth largest Spanish-speaking country in the world. By 2030, when it is expected dren activities, fitness room, shuffleboard, a lounge and full service restaurant. that 96.3 million Hispanics will reside in the United States, the United States will be Registration forms are available at the district website, click on Organization Down- the second-largest Spanish-speaking country in the world (behind Mexico). loads. Reservations need to be in by Aug. 24 to guarantee a room. Questions or comments? Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Website for the Missouri District LLL:
www. luther a nsonline . com / missour idistr ictlll
The Voice of Missouri
Fa m i ly Li fe a nd Yout h
What: When: Where:
Walther League R eunion
Reunion and Reminiscing with Rev. Walter Schoedel Sunday, Sept. 25 2-4:30 p.m. Meramec Bluffs 1 Meramec Bluffs Drive Ballwin, MO 63021
There is no fee to attend, but please RSVP by Sept. 16 to Sue Thompson at the Missouri District office at Sue.Thompson@mo.lcms.org (314) 317-4556 (Look for the districtâ€™s new phone numbers at mo.lcms. org or ask your church office after Aug. 15.) Light refreshments will be served during this time of reunion of past Walther League members. Bring your memories and share in this afternoon of reminiscing and fellowship! Hosted by the Missouri District in partnership with Lutheran Senior Services.
Watch Time of Grace for Straight talk & real hope!
Sundays at 6:30 am 800.661.3311 â€˘ timeofgrace.org
The theme this year is confirmation instruction and ministry. It is at Faith Lutheran Church in Jefferson City on Saturday, Sept. 17. Registration begins at 9 a.m. with the program starting at 10 a.m. and ending by 3 p.m. with lunch provided. The cost for this conference is $25 per person. There are special break-out sessions for youth. These sessions will focus on giving students the leadership tools they need as they live out their faith among their peers. To register, complete the registration form and include payment of $25 (per person) and mail in with payment by Friday, Sept. 2.
R egistration Form: Name: Address: City, State, ZIP: Email address: Phone: Congregation: Congregation city: Yes, I want to attend the CONNECT conference. Please include payment of $25 per person. Check payable to: The Missouri District CONNECT Conference Registration deadline: Sept. 2, 2011 Mail to: The Missouri District CONNECT Conference, 660 Mason Ridge Center Drive, Suite 100, St. Louis, MO 63141-8557
Fa m i ly Li fe a nd Yout h Missouri District Junior High R etreats October 21-23, 2011, and March 23-25, 2012 What does the Missouri District do for your congregation’s youth? Besides being a resource for congregations, the district hosts a variety of youth ministry retreats and gatherings throughout the year, for example, the twice-a-year junior high retreat. The 2011-2012 Junior High Retreats will focus on baptism. We are excited to have Dani Tietjen as our main presenter. Dani is a synodically trained Director of Christian Outreach with a variety of ministry experience in outreach as well as regional and national summer event director for Youth Encounter, where she met with speakers from all over the world. She took the opportunity to watch and learn from them as she discovered her own voice and the message she had to share. She has spoken at many LCMS youth events across the country. In addition to speaking engagements, Dani continues to be part of ministry in Haiti, where she participates in and leads yearly mission trips. Music for both retreats will be provided by Christian band Parallax View. We welcome their musical talents and hearts for ministry as part of the weekend.
Who can go? Youth: primarily in grades six, seven and eight. Adult Counselors: Approximately one for each seven youth (male counselors for male youth and female counselors for female youth, please).
What will we do? In addition to our four-part session/Bible study, there will be games, fellowship, talent show, servant event projects and worship. The “Saturday Night Fun Fest” includes hayrides, board games, basketball, music, dance lessons and karaoke. Camp Windermere offers free, open gym time on Saturday afternoon. Recreational fields and equipment are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Feel free to bring your own gloves, bats, balls, tennis rackets, etc. The camp also offers some equipment for a small rental fee. What’s the cost? $115 per person (same for youth and adults). A deposit of $50 per person is due with registration. The balance is due upon arrival at camp. Lodging is in the Wilderness Creek Lodge, a motel-style room with bathroom, heat/air and carpeting. You will need to bring your own bedding and towels. Meals are provided in the camp dining hall beginning with breakfast on Saturday. No meal is served Friday evening. Groups should eat before arriving at camp. Fall registration information: All registrations and deposits must be received at the district office by Friday, Oct. 3. All registrations must be accompanied by a non-refundable deposit. Early registration is encouraged. Registrations received after Oct. 3, with or without deposit, at the district office are not guaranteed. Registration for the spring retreat will be sent out and available on the district website in January 2012. Registration, refund policy, directions, scholarship info:
Can be found on our website and will be included in a mailing to your church. mo.lcms.org.
Outreach Event in Springfield
Senior High Youth Gathering Hearts on Fire … iConnect
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last— and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. This is my command: Love each other.” (John 15:16-17)
Ongoing Ambassadors for Christ (OAFC), an outreach ministry serving congregations of The LCMS, held its 2011 National Summer Training July 7-14 at Redeemer Lutheran, Springfield, Mo. One hundred and twenty- Photo by Laura Rooney four youth and adults took part in the event hosted by LCMS churches in Springfield, Aurora, Bolivar, Branson, Forsyth, Lockwood and Marshfield. These and other area congregations also provided support for meals and other events. “Stand Firm in Christ” was the theme. This theme, based on 2 Cor. 1:21, was echoed through the week in team time, large group assemblies, Bible studies and workshops. The OAFC outreach weekend started Friday evening at nine area churches. Teams canvassed on behalf of their assigned church on Saturday. On Sunday morning each team had a part in sharing the Gospel during Sunday school and worship at their host congregation. Teams also led a devotional program at a care home in the area. On Monday evening, the entire group conducted a canvass for a new mission start by Redeemer in Ozark, Mo. From our canvasses, we were privileged to visit 3,245 homes. We talked with people at 1,430 of these homes. No one was home at 1,815 homes where we left Gospel literature. Seventy-five people were discovered who welcomed a follow up visit. Of the 889 people who answered the question of where they thought they would go when they die, 503 made a confession of being certain of going to heaven because Jesus Christ had paid for all of their sin. Eleven area youth and nine adults were trained in witnessing with OAFC. After the closing devotion, two travel teams set out: One team traveled to Wisconsin, the other toured Missouri and Iowa. Visit www. oafc.org for information or to become a prayer partner.
The Voice of Missouri
Educationa l Ser v ices Worth Waiting For
Toward the end of the school year, River Roads Lutheran School, St. Louis, conducted the Worth Waiting For program for its seventh and eighth graders. Worth Waiting For is a Bible-based sexual abstinence experience. At the end, students voluntarily sign a pledge to wait until marriage before engaging in sexual activity and to honor the state of marriage as God commands in Scripture. Those pledges were presented to the students in a worship service of Ebenezer Lutheran Church, St. Louis.
College Bound Students
Connect your college-bound student members with a Lutheran campus ministry! Pastors, DCEs, youth workers, parents and friends: You can use LCMS Campus Ministry’s no-cost, no-obligation StudentConnect service to make a personal connection with an LCMS ministry near your student’s college or university campus. Check out www.lcmscampusministry.org/StudentConnect.php For more information about campus ministry in the Missouri District-LCMS, please contact Pastor Dave Benson in Columbia at email@example.com.
Five of the 20 students who publicly confirmed that they are, indeed, worth waiting for!
Baker’s Dozen Welcomed at Ebenezer, St. Louis
Through baptisms, confirmations and transfers, Ebenezer has welcomed a “baker's dozen” to its worship family since the beginning of 2011. Ebenezer is a 142-yearold, inner city congregation in north St. Louis. It shares ministry with River Roads Lutheran School, one of only two remaining Lutheran schools in north city and the only one accredited by the National Lutheran School Accreditation (NLSA).
Bethelhem, R aymore
Congratulations to Bethlehem Lutheran School, Raymore, Mo., students Isabella Chrisman, Allyson Ebert and Nathan Wagner with assistance from Leah Rogge and Daniel Wickham. Team “Levitator” placed first in Missouri with their hovercraft project, designed to help people with limited mobility. They competed in the “Speed Velocity, Acceleration, Vectors, and Scalars” category. eCYBERMISSION, sponsored by the United States Army, is a web-based science, technology, engineering and math competition for sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth grade teams. Teams propose a solution to a real problem in their community and compete for regional and national awards. eCYBERMISSION challenges students to explore how science, technology, engineering and math work in our world. Each member of the team received a $1,000 savings bond and will go on to compete at the regional level.
OASIS Tutoring Program in Lutheran Grade Schools
Twelve of the 13 new members of Ebenezer Lutheran.
VBS Collects School Supplies, Backpacks for Joplin Salem Lutheran Church, Black Jack, Mo., held its 2011 Pandamania vacation Bible school June 26-30. The mission project was to collect school supplies to benefit children affected by the recent tornado in Joplin, Mo. Pictured are children holding donated supplies, along with backpacks decorated by the children to send with the supplies.
OASIS, an organization dedicated to enriching the lives of adults age 50 and older, sponsors an intergenerational tutoring program. This program addresses one of our nation’s most pressing problems – literacy. Using a curriculum developed by reading professionals, adult volunteers tutor children with underdeveloped reading skills in one-on-one sessions throughout the school year. Lutheran Family and Children’s Services is proud to provide this service to several Lutheran grade schools in St. Louis and the surrounding area. During this past school year, more than 100 children benefited from interaction with an older adult who helped them build reading skills, self-esteem and positive attitudes toward learning. If you could spend about one hour a week sharing your life experiences with a needy child, please consider becoming an OASIS tutor. No prior teaching experience is required. You will learn how to share the skills and knowledge you already possess. Tutors need to be trained for programs that will start in early October. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, a tutor training program will be held at Concordia Lutheran Church, 505 S. Kirkwood Road, Kirkwood, MO 63122. There is a training program for perspective tutors beginning at 9 a.m. on Sept. 8 at Trinity Lutheran School, 55 N. Pacific, Cape Girardeau, MO 63701. After completing the tutor training, tutors may choose a school where they would like to help and a grade level they prefer. These are the only tutor training programs that will be provided by LFCS. However, if these training dates are not possibilities for you, you can be instructed at a public school training session or at a Catholic school training session, and still volunteer in a Lutheran grade school. For more information or for the dates and times of additional training sessions, please contact Luanne Beumer at (314) 842-4826 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leadersh ip Tra in ing Send Me St. Louis Fall Training and Events
Send Me St. Louis offers a variety of training and events to help equip congregations and faith-based social service agencies for effective service. The 2011 fall calendar hosts numerous events for those involved at all levels of congregation outreach and social service ministry – from “101” level training for those just getting started to higher levels of training for long-term social service workers or those seeking to expand their service. All events are held at the Lutheran Hour Ministries office and are offered at no or minimal cost. For more information about Send Me St. Louis’ services, training opportunities, or volunteer management resources, visit its website at www.SendMeStLouis.org or contact Hannah Shanks by phone at (314) 678-0015 ext. 3, or email at Hannah@sendmestlouis.org.
Engaging the Community with the Love of Christ
No matter if you are shy or outgoing, we have all been given the Great Commission to reach out to others with Jesus’ love. With that in mind, LCMS SPIFE-Rural and Small Town Mission has put together a few ideas to help you and your church get started: Set up a food pantry or thrift store, or offer a space you have to a group that already runs one. Instead of just having a free-will Lenten or Advent midweek supper, have a supper where you invite the community to come eat for free as a gift to them. Have a powerful presence at the local fair. Get involved in parades. Many churches already have fundraiser stands (ice cream, pie, hamburgers, funnel cake, corn dogs and bake sales). Take that fundraiser and make it a witness. Is it easy to tell that your stand belongs to your church? Make sure! Every group from LLL, ladies aid, youth, PTL, etc., can get involved. Wear name tags, or a church “team” t-shirt with your mission statement. Have napkins or cups printed with a short Bible message, or do-it-yourself with printer labels. Consider hosting a meal for traveling carnival workers at your church, or better yet, take it to them in a non-threatening location. They will appreciate the home-cooked meal and you will have a chance to reach out. Open up your church and/or school facilities for tours or better yet, let community groups like Boy Scouts or the Optimist Club use it for no charge. Not everybody can quilt or embroider today. Maybe your quilter’s group could offer lessons to the community and give the finished products to a shelter. Hold your Bible classes and activities in places besides your facilities. Go to the park for a worship service in the summer, have the Wednesday morning men’s class at the local coffee shop. Let people “catch” you worshiping our awesome God! Pass out pocket crosses wherever you go. Remember to A.C.T., always carry three, one for you and two to give away. Visit www.pocketcross.org or call 503593-1737 to order. The important thing to remember is to relax, use your imagination, and to reach out for Christ! “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline” (2 Tim. 1:7 NLT). Rural & Small Town Mission-SPIFE is a resource center that exists to encourage and reinforce rural and small town congregations to serve as mission outposts in their communities and the world. If you have a good idea for outreach or a story you’d like to share with us, so that we can share it with others, please contact us at 888-463-5127 or email@example.com. Learn more about us at www. spife.org or call anytime.
Speed Networking: Prisoner and Ex-Offender Services - Thursday, Aug. 25, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Opportunity for congregations and organizations interested/involved in prisoner and ex-offender ministries to learn from each other and network. Cost: FREE Christian Volunteer Managers Network - Friday, Sept. 9, 8:30-10:30 a.m. Opportunity for congregation and agency volunteer managers to meet for a time of growth, support and encouragement. Cost: FREE Tips for the Journey: Panel Discussion - Thursday, Sept. 22, 8:30-10:30 a.m. Join with us as we hear from a panel of church and agency social service managers about what works, what hasn’t and their journeys in developing an effective social service outreach ministry. Cost: $10 Logic Models & Evaluation for Faith-Based Organizations and Social Service Outreach Saturday, Oct. 8, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Learn about how to create a logic model that works for your outreach or organization and how to evaluate for meaningful results and feedback. Cost: $15 Risk Management Training - Thursday, Oct. 20, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Learn how to plan for risks in your volunteer management and social service outreach ministries. Learn how to protect your staff, clients, congregants and your church/organization. Cost: $10 Send Me Saturday - Saturday, Nov. 11, 8:30 a.m. -2:30 p.m. Opportunity for Christians to unite in serving the community. Cost: FREE Speed Networking: Immigrant/Refugee Services - Tuesday, Nov. 29, 8:30-10:30 a.m. Opportunity for congregations and organizations interested/involved in immigrant and refugee services to learn from each other and network. Cost: FREE Christian Volunteer Managers Network - Thursday, Dec. 1, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Opportunity for congregation and agency volunteer managers to meet for a time of growth, support and encouragement. Cost: FREE
The Voice of Missouri
Concord ia Sem ina r y, St. Lou is Seminary to Host 22nd Annual Symposium
“Rediscovering the Art of Preaching” is the title of the 22nd Annual Theological Symposium, to be held Sept. 20-21 on the campus of Concordia Seminary. The main presenters for the event are Dr. Dean Nadasdy, Dr. Dale Meyer, Dr. David Schmitt and Dr. Glenn Nielsen. Sectional presenters include seminary faculty members David Maxwell, David Peter, Tony Cook, Glenn Nielsen, David Schmitt, Robert Weise and Jeffrey Gibbs. Additional sectional presenters include David Coe, Justin Rossow and Ed Grimenstein. While the heart of preaching is familiar conversation for Lutherans, the art of preaching may be a bit stranger speech. Caemmerer’s Preaching for the Church was published in 1959 and, in many ways, has shaped our discussion of preaching. Much has changed since then, both in the world and in homiletics. The discipline of homiletics has grown,
interacting with various cultural settings, exploring new methods, and incorporating new insights. How can we learn from these conversations, reflecting on the art so that we better communicate the heart of preaching? The 2011 Theological Symposium will address this question. Full registration is $130 per person ($140 after Sept. 6) and includes program materials, Tuesday’s buffet reception and refreshments. Other registration fees come at ala carte pricing. Registration deadline is Sept. 6. For more information and/or registration information, contact the office of continuing education and parish services at (314) 505-7486 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the seminary’s website at www.csl.edu.
LutherHostel 2011 Features Shimkus
LutherHostel 2011 will be held Oct. 1-4 on the campus of Concordia Seminary. LutherHostel is an event designed to provide growth in biblical knowledge and understanding, fun and fellowship, and a chance to gain helpful insights for daily living. It is offered for adults age 55 and older. The theme for the event will be “Public Service and My Lutheran Faith.” The main presenter will be Congressman John M. Shimkus (R, Illinois-19). Congressman Shimkus is serving his 14th year in Congress and represents the 19th District of Illinois. He serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, as well as the Subcommittees on Communications, Technology, and the Internet; Energy and Environment; and Health. He retired from the Army Reserves with the rank of lieutenant colonel as of June 1, 2008, closing out 28 years of military service. In 2007 he was presented the Christus Vivit award by Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. Rep. Shimkus, his wife, Karen, and their three sons maintain their residence in Collinsville, Ill. They are
active members of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Collinsville. Scheduled activities for LutherHostel 2011 will feature a reception and dinner with President and Mrs. Dale A. Meyer. Other activities include presentations, class visitation, student-led evening devotions, opportunities for informal interaction with faculty, a private demonstration of the organ in the Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus, and a tour of selected St. Louis area sites. An optional tour of Lutheran historical sites in Perry County, Mo., is available on Oct. 5, immediately following LutherHostel. The LutherHostel fee is $325 per person, which includes all meals and refreshments for the event. Housing is available on campus (on a limited basis for an additional cost) or in nearby hotels. The registration deadline is Sept. 15. For more information about LutherHostel, contact the seminary’s office of continuing education and parish services at (314) 505-7486 or email@example.com.
Six Honored at Seminary’s Commencement
At Concordia Seminary’s Commencement Ceremony on May 20, six distinguished gentlemen were honored with awards.
Wilbert H. Rosin (Distinguished Alumnus Award) Rev. Dr. Wilbert H. Rosin graduated from Concordia Seminary in 1947. He served as a professor at St. Paul’s College, Concordia, Mo., from 1947 to 1961. In 1977, he became president of Concordia College, Milwaukee. Despite significant challenges, the junior John D. Eckrich (Christus Vivit Award) Dr. John D. Eckrich has been a Lutheran physician, internist and gastroenterologist college became an accredited four-year institution. The school has since moved to nearby for the past 35 years in St. Louis. In 1999 he founded Grace Place Lutheran Wellness Mequon, Wis., and is now the largest educational institution in the LCMS. Ministries. Grace Place offers weeklong retreats to Lutheran professional church workers Carl R. Selle (Honorary Doctor of Divinity degree) and weekend retreats to Lutheran congregations, teaching them preventative health and Rev. Carl R. Selle graduated from Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, completing his wellness skills to integrate physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual and relational health M.Div. in 1969. He has served in campus ministry for 29 years, with 16 of those as into their professional ministry and personal pilgrim walk. Dr. Eckrich also served as the campus missionary at the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point through Peace Lutheran Campus Center (1987-1992 and 2000-2011). In the late ’70s, Rev. Selle commencement speaker. recognized a growing interest in the LCMS to reach out among international students on Gary W. Thies (Christus Vivit Award) Mr. Gary W. Thies became the first mission development officer with LCMS World university campuses. He worked with LCMS Campus Ministry to begin this outreach. Mission Development Services in 1994. He also works with the Nebraska and Iowa West International Student Ministry, Inc. was officially organized in 1996 as a mission ministry Districts. In the role of mission development officer, he visits LCMS congregations and associated with the LCMS. individuals to inform and excite them about missions Hubert H. Temme and to encourage them to adopt, financially and (Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree) through prayer, a specific mission project or missionary. Rev. Hubert H. (Hu) Temme’s first call was as He also founded Mission Central in Mapleton, Iowa. a missionary to the Australian Aborigines, then as a mission planter, and pastor of other congregations. Rev. Paul M. Heerboth Temme was an Australian Army Reserve Chaplain, (Distinguished Alumnus Award) Rev. Dr. Paul M. Heerboth graduated from chairperson of the Board of Aboriginal Missions, and Concordia Seminary in 1948. As one of the first guest speaker on the Australian Lutheran Hour. In the candidates called to serve in the LCMS’s mission to United States, Rev. Temme served congregations in Japan, he served as a missionary there from 1949 to Centralia, Ill., Baltimore, Md., and as vice president of 1961. While in Japan, in addition to starting mission development for Wheat Ridge Ministries in Chicago, stations, Rev. Heerboth developed Sunday school Ill. Rev. Temme and his wife, June, have most recently literature in Japanese, which was used by many served as representatives of Concordia Seminary in the Lutheran groups there. He also taught in the Tokyo advancement division. They have visited with pastors, Lutheran Center Bible School, which later became a church workers, and donors in Florida and elsewhere From left: Gary Thies, Wilbert Rosin, Carl Selle, Paul Heerboth (seated), John to keep the visibility of the seminary strong and to seminary. Eckrich, Hu Temme, President Dale Meyer. encourage financial and other support.
President’s Penning Balancing Your Life “Live life with a due sense of responsibility, not as those who do not know the meaning of life but as those who do” (Eph. 5:15). Karen Drury It seems you don’t have to go very far to be faced with the reality that we are all paying more for everything we buy today. Food, gasoline, utilities and clothes are all priced a little bit higher than the last time we paid for them! Penny after penny and dollar after dollar, the money disappears faster than we can make it. Individuals and families are faced daily with the rising costs of everyday living and the headlines talk of balancing budgets. Sometimes it appears that nothing in this life can be balanced. It’s easy to become discouraged. But we, as Christians, need to be reminded that Christ has already paid the price, “one died for all” (2 Cor. 5:14). Truly knowing this, through the Holy Spirit, placed inside of us as a deposit of what is to come, can give us all that we truly need in this life. If we focus on this truth, we are given balance and direction for our lives. Jesus summarized what it takes for us to live a balanced life through the Great Commandment – “Love the Lord your God with all your heart…love your neighbor as yourself,” and the Great Commission – “Go and make disciples…” We are to worship God, we are to minister to one another, and we are to share God’s message of salvation with the world. Ladies of the LWML, as you may face difficult financial times and the devil would have you believe that your mites and your service surely do not matter when the need is so great, be reminded of the widow, who only had two small copper coins. Loving God + Loving others = Balanced living.
22nd Biennial Lutheran Women’s Missionary League Missouri District Convention Plans are well underway for the 2012 LWML Missouri District Convention, which will be held at the St. Charles Convention Center. Be sure to mark your calendars and save the dates for Friday, June 8, to Sunday, June 10, 2012. Registration forms will be in the February issue of The Voice.
Blessings Too Numerous To Count
My husband and I recently celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary. We dated for six years before getting married, so in reality we have been a couple for 45 years. Over these years, the Lord has blessed us in so many ways it is impossible to count. The first and foremost blessing we have shared is having Christ be the Rock center of our relationship. Being in the Word daily and praying together has made life easier to live, and certainly more joyful. Whenever we have encountered difficulties or problems, be they budgeting woes, time constraints, or work situations that are not always the most pleasant, we remind each other what God has shared in His Word for us. We could always just try to figure out of our own reasoning how to solve life’s challenges—our human nature generally thinks we can do it all on our own—but the true peace and contentment comes when our Lord leads us. In the LWML, we sisters (and brothers) in Christ have shared innumerable blessings as well. God knows what is best for us and has given us the tools and information we need to live out our lives in obedience to Him. When we stay grounded in the Lord Jesus Christ, celebrating the free gift He has given us of forgiveness of sins, salvation, and eternal life, we are enabled to be the true missionaries He intends us to be. Since this issue of The Voice deals mostly with the concept of budgets, I encourage each of you to approach budgeting, be it with time, talent or treasures, with this encouragement: Vice President of be in God’s Holy Word daily, keep Christ the Rock center Gospel Outreach Sally Handrick of your life, and serve the Lord with gladness.
Lutheran Mission Partnership of Southeast Missouri
The Lutheran Mission Partnership of Southeast Missouri is a consortium of three small congregations that neither individually nor together can support a full-time pastor. The consortium is working cooperatively to raise funds to support a pastor to help continue Word and Sacrament ministry, to share needs and to advance the message of God’s amazing grace in Jesus Christ in this very rural part of our state. The funds received from an LWML grant, together with funds from the three member congregations, Grace (Malden), Redeemer (Kennett), and Trinity (Doniphan), from neighboring LCMS congregations, and from individuals are used solely for the support of a full-time pastor. Currently serving the partnership is Rev. Timothy Matthew. Among the highlights in our partnership ministry in 2011 to date are: the beginning of an LWML society at Redeemer (Kennett), expected to be formally accepted into the Jackson-Bootheel Zone at the 2011 Fall Zone Rally; the child baptism of Malyssa Oldham at Trinity; the baptism of seven children in the Johnson family at Redeemer; the confirmation of Garrett Riley at Grace; the adult baptism/confirmation of Beth Michel and confirmation of her son, Wilhelm, at Trinity. Other outreach efforts include: beginning another year of Joybells, a neighborhood prayer canvassing effort in the three partnership communities following the Pentecost celebration on June 12 and hosting vacation Bible school at all three partnership congregations this summer. We join in thanksgiving to our gracious God for His many blessings on the partnership ministry, and we humbly thank our fellow Missouri Lutherans and LWML Sisters in Christ for their ongoing support of our efforts for the sake of His Johnson children at their baptism at Redeemer kingdom. Lutheran Church, Kennett, Mo.
The Voice of Missouri
Lutheran Women’s Missionary League What Every Woman Wants...
Rev. Alan OK, OK, how Wollenburg would a pastoral counselor ever know such a thing? Like every other man, he can only pretend to know. Ha ha. Over the course of some decades of marriage, this counselor has found there truly are some fundamental differences between men and women. One great difference is in what they value: We men tend to value flashy, grand acts that show others our great love for our wives. Most wives, on the other hand, value less flashy, grand acts and would much rather have a husband who is faithful, steadfast, dependable, trustworthy, etc. Whether or not he is rich or famous or accomplished, what she ultimately values the most is a husband who will “be there” for her and their family, day in and day out. The Christian Church is the “bride of Christ.” And we all know what the “bride of Christ” wants, don’t we? She receives from her faithful Husband perfect fidelity, steadfastness, total dependability and utter trustworthiness. Our Lord Christ has been (and remains!) the totally faithful Husband of His bride, the Church. And we long to return to Him the same sort of fidelity. That brings us to budgets and offerings, mite boxes, mites and the like. Some of us have seen households where precious money is squandered on luxuries not truly needed. In those households the children might have suffered because money that should have been spent on basic necessities was squandered in other ways. In the Christian congregation, as also in the LWML, our first concern remains that we steadfastly speak to a fallen world about their perfect Savior! Grand, flashy acts might happen occasionally, but the true “bread and butter” of our work remains sharing the message of man’s sin and God’s perfect salvation! And your offerings, mites for missions, etc. do just that! May the Lord keep us faithful in all the right ways! +
A nnouncements Choir Directors’ Choir Members’ Workshop September 10
Bell Cultural Events Center (campus of MidAmerica Nazarene University) 2030 E. College Way, Olathe, Kan. Dr. John Leavitt, Workshop Leader Choir Directors – Morning Session 9 a.m. Morning: $35 All Day: $40 Choir Members – Afternoon Session 1 p.m. Afternoon: $15 For registration forms or more information contact St. John’s College Alumni Association (SJCAA), PO Box 376, Winfield, KS 67156, (620) 221-1572, firstname.lastname@example.org or Rev. Thomas Brooks, email@example.com. Sponsors: St. John’s College Alumni Association (SJCAA), Winfield, Kan., and Beautiful Savior Lutheran, Olathe, Kan. (with support from Thrivent Financial)
Personnel Changes — Commissioned Ministers of R eligion Non-Candidate Status Bordeleau, Jessica (LCMS Youth Ministry, Kirkwood, and Timothy, St. Louis) 12/1/10 Nies, Sarah (River Roads, St. Louis) 1/1/11 Transferred from Other Districts Hecksel, Shawn (MNS) to Abiding Savior, St. Louis 6/12/11 by D. McBurney Transferred to Other Districts Creutz, Kevin (Zion, St. Charles) to IN 6/24/11 Creutz, Lauren (non-candidate) to IN 6/24/11
Dehnke, Christine (emeritus) to FG 6/30/11 Gilbert, Joel (King of Glory, St. Louis) to SI 6/20/11 Landon, Beth (King of Glory, St. Louis) to RM 6/1/11 Nies, Sarah (non-candidate) to SD 6/13/11 Sunderman, Sarah (Lutheran School Association, Cole Camp) to MDS 6/30/11 Deceased Hemler, Arthur (emeritus) 5/26/11
A nniversary R ecognitions
The Missouri District recognizes full-time professional church workers who are presently serving in Missouri District congregations and schools for total years of service in LCMS entities. Congregations and administrators were asked to submit the names of workers who reached anniversary years between Sept. 1, 2010, and Aug. 31, 2011. Thank you to the churches and schools that provided this list of names.
Jeremy Becker – Concordia Lutheran Church, Kirkwood Laurie Beining – Abiding Savior Lutheran School, St. Louis County Denise Bergelin – Lutheran Association for Special Education, St. Louis Megan Bryant – Child of God, St. Peters Rev. Barrett Buchmueller – Trinity Lutheran Church, Freistatt Rev. Richard Cody – St. John’s Lutheran Church, Monett Rachael Engelbrecht – Immanuel Lutheran School, Jefferson City Rev. Jeremy Klaustermeier – St. John’s Lutheran Church, Warrenton Brendan Knorp – Concordia Lutheran Church, Kirkwood Angela Lohmann – Immanuel Lutheran School, Perryville Heath Luehmann – St. John Lutheran School, Ellisville Mandy McDonald – Immanuel Lutheran School, Jefferson City Terri Mize – Child of God Lutheran School, St. Peters Angie Mundt – Timothy Lutheran School, Blue Springs Andrea Schmidt – St. Paul Lutheran High School, Concordia
Twenty Years Rev. Tony Alter – Faith Lutheran Church, Jefferson City Rev. Randy Asburry – Hope Lutheran Church, St. Louis Clint Colwell – Redeemer Lutheran Church, Springfield Rev. Gary Griffin – Immanuel Lutheran Church, Lockwood Mary Jo Henning – Child of God Lutheran School, St. Peters Gail Horvath – Abiding Savior Lutheran School, St. Louis County Val Krause – St. Paul Lutheran High School, Concordia Peggy McFerran – St. John’s Lutheran School, Arnold Rev. Gregg Reiser – St. John Lutheran Church, Farly Rev. Scott Schmieding – Immanuel Lutheran Church, St. Charles Rev. Richard Steensma – Timothy Lutheran Church, Blue Springs Laura Vogt – Timothy Lutheran School, Blue Springs
Rev. Randall Bell – Christ Lutheran Church, Augusta Rev. Douglas Gaunt – Trinity Lutheran Church, St. Charles Catherine Hansen – Child of God Lutheran School, St. Peters Fawn Hansen – Trinity Lutheran School, Freistatt Rev. Monte Haun – Concordia Lutheran Church, Kirkwood Rev. Paul Mehl – St. Paul Lutheran High School, Concordia Pamela Miller – St. John’s Lutheran School, Arnold Kimberly Paquette – Lutheran Association for Special Education, St. Louis Rev. David Reimnitz – Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Raymore Will Roundey – Lutheran High School of St. Charles County, St. Peters Gary Schaefer – Abiding Savior Lutheran School, St. Louis County Rev. Philip Wolf – St. John, Purdy Rev. William Zastrow – Ebenezer Lutheran Church, Leslie
Thirty-Five Years Rev. Dale Bond – Family of Christ Lutheran Church, Nixa Fern Bowder – Trinity Lutheran School, Jefferson City Rev. Russell Bowder – Trinity Lutheran Church, Jefferson City Blair Bueckman – Our Savior, Fenton Dave Frank – Timothy Lutheran Church, Blue Springs Lois Halter – Abiding Savior Lutheran School, St. Louis County James Hicks – St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Cape Girardeau Rev. Gary Hoffstetter – Christ Lutheran Church, Gordonville William Leech – Immanuel Lutheran School, Jefferson City Judy MacLean – Immanuel Lutheran School, Lockwood Mary Mueller – Our Redeemer Lutheran School, Overland Joyce Reinitz – Our Redeemer Lutheran School, Overland Greg Rommel – Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, Sunset Hills Rev. Ted Schubkegel – Timothy Lutheran Church, Blue Springs
Thirty Years Karen Benton – Our Redeemer Lutheran School, Overland Barb Garvey – Grace Chapel Lutheran School, Bellefontaine Neighbors Cheryl Honoree – Concordia-Trinity Lutheran School, Frohna Rev. Stephen Kamprath – Immanuel Lutheran Church, Rolla Dorothy King – Immanuel Lutheran School, St. Charles Sandra Loduca – Lutheran Association for Special Education, St. Louis John Maas – Bethlehem Lutheran School, Raymore Diane Maurer – Trinity Lutheran School, Cape Girardeau Rev. David Pelsue – Reformation Lutheran Church, Affton Rev. Kim Scharff – Trinity Lutheran Church, Norborne Penny Schlie – Bethlehem Lutheran School, Raymore Trish Winfrey – Our Savior Lutheran School, Fenton
Forty Years Ron Gesch – Immanuel Lutheran School, Higginsville Dolores Kesel – St. Mark’s Lutheran School, Eureka Rev. Francis Lieb – Timothy Lutheran Church, Blue Springs Phyllis Pearson – Our Redeemer Lutheran School, Overland Rev. James Schnackenberg – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Carthage Sharon Sherrill – St. Paul Lutheran School, Farmington
Forty-Five Years James Carlson – Immanuel, St. Charles
May God continue to bless your ministry!
A nnouncements Calling Congregations For Sole Pastors Appleton City, Trinity – candidate David Herald (SL) assigned Barnhart, Immanuel – (retirement of Rev. Dr. Richard Manus) candidate Duane Meissner (SL) assigned Brentwood, Mount Calvary Conway, Immanuel – candidate Nathan Grewe (FW) assigned Cuba/St. James, St. Paul/St. John Dexter, Faith Emma, Holy Cross – called Rev. Wayne Huebner of Chilton, WI Florissant, Salem Glendale, Glendale – (retirement of Rev. Steven Albers) Lemay, Gethsemane Linn/Pilgrim, Drake/St. John Louisiana/Bowling Green, Trinity/ Good Shepherd – candidate Jeffrey Dock (FW) assigned Maplewood, Concordia – candidate Matthew Wood (SL) assigned Marshall, Our Redeemer – (retirement of Rev. Douglas Dubisar) St. Charles, Our Savior – called Rev. Keith Speaks of Kernersville, NC (declined) St. Louis, St. John – deferred vicar Michael Tanney assigned St. Peters, Child of God Washington, Faith – called Rev. Mark Sell of Ballwin, MO (accepted) West Plains, Immanuel – called Rev. Wade Mattsfield of Lincoln, NE (accepted) Served by Intentional Interim Pastors: Affton, Salem (Rev. Dr. Darrell Zimmerman) Emma, Holy Cross (Rev. Richard Swanson) Fenton, Our Savior (Rev. Dr. Richard Foss) Florissant, Salem (Rev. Gordon Beck) Lemay, Gethsemane (Rev. Roger Henning) Scott City, Eisleben – convertible vicar has been assigned For Senior Pastor: Affton, Salem Arnold, St. John (retirement of Rev. Dr. Jack Miller) For Associate or Assistant Pastor: Chesterfield, King of Kings Columbia, Campus – called Rev. Nathaniel Schuetze of Columbia, MO on behalf of the Columbia/Jefferson City Mission Action Advisory Group to serve as MAL/mission planter Des Peres, St. Paul – called Rev. Kevin Armbrust of St. Louis, MO (accepted) Farmington, St. Paul – called Rev. Marcus Jauss of Higginsville, MO (declined) Jefferson City, Faith
Overland, Our Redeemer – called Rev. Feliz Tovar of St. Louis to be associate pastor/pastor for Hispanic outreach St. Louis County, Abiding Savior – called Rev. Jason Hoerth of Cabot, PA (accepted) Sedalia, Our Savior – candidate Andrew Tessone (SL) assigned Springfield, Trinity – candidate Nicholas Hagerman (SL) assigned Wentzville, Immanuel – candidate Todd Liefer (SL) assigned Vacant (on Hold But Being Served): Ashland, Family of Christ Bethany, Hope Bismarck, St. John Center, Trinity Creighton, Trinity Diggins, Zion Elk Prairie (Rolla), Peace Isabella, Faith Knob Noster, Faith Memphis, St. Paul Milan, Peace Oak Grove, Shepherd of the Valley Pagedale, Grace Pilot Knob, Immanuel Princeton, Immanuel Potosi, Redeemer St. Louis, Holy Sacrament St. Louis, St. Matthew St. Louis, St. Paul St. Louis County, Immanuel Chapel Sarcoxie, Trinity Shelbyville, Mount Hope Stockton, St. Andrew Sweet Springs, Christ Wellsville, Trinity Other Calls: Breite, Douglas (Trinity, Cape Girardeau) to King of Glory, Blaine, MN (declined) Freeman, Jeremy (St. Paul, Sedalia) to Trinity, Van Meter, IA (declined) Gallagher, Mike (Candidate Status) to First, Ponca City, OK (accepted) Hagan, R. Lee (St. Paul, Concordia) to St. John, Glendale, WI (declined) Kennell, Andrew (St. Matthew, Lees Summit) to Our Redeemer, Staplehurst, NE (accepted) Muench, David (Emeritus Status) to Concordia Plan Services as Director of Ministerial Care (accepted) Peterson, Ryan (St. John, Ellisville) to Our Savior, Lansing, MI (declined) Pierce, Kent (Campus, Columbia) to St. John, South Euclid, OH (declined) Seidler, Scott (Concordia, Kirkwood) to Our Savior, Topsfield, MA (declined)
We R emember: 1 Rev. Norman Dierking who joined his Savior July 7, 2011. 1 Mr. Arthur Hemler, called home May 26, 2011.
Personnel Changes — Ordained Ordained and Installed: Dock, Jeffrey (FW’11) ordained and installed as pastor at Trinity/ Good Shepherd, Louisiana/Bowling Green, MO 7/10/11 by R. Mirly Grewe, Nathan (FW’11) ordained and installed as pastor at Immanuel, Conway (Rader), MO 6/26/11 by R. Mirly Liefer, Todd (SL’11) ordained St. John, Red Bud, IL 6/12/11 by M. Nebel; installed as associate pastor at Immanuel, Wentzville, MO 6/26/11 by J. Auringer Wood, Matthew (SL’11) ordained 6/18/11 and installed as pastor at Concordia, Maplewood, MO 6/19/11 by R. Rall Transferred to Our District: Hoerth, Jason (EA) installed as associate pastor at Abiding Savior, St. Louis County, MO 6/26/11 by D. McBurney Mattsfield, Wade (NEB) installed as pastor at Immanuel, West Plains, MO 7/17/11 by D. Maas Nelson, Jeffrey (non-candidate) from Southern Illinois District 6/20/11 Pederson, Joe Ed (non-candidate) from Rocky Mountain District 6/7/11 Candidate Status: Logid, Mark (Bd. For Pastoral Education, deployed to Concordia Seminary) 5/15/11 Retired: Albers, Steven (Glendale, Glendale) 6/26/11 Eatherton, Lawrence (Our Savior, Fenton) 5/31/11 Removed from Roster: Cascione, Jerome (Trinity, Creighton) 5/11/11
Transferred to Other Districts: Dehnke, Gary (emeritus) to FloridaGeorgia District 6/30/11 Gallagher, Mike (candidate) to Oklahoma District 7/15/11 Logid, Mark (candidate) to Pacific Southwest District 6/13/11 Loy, David (Zion, Bolivar) to Pacific Southwest District 5/23/11 Ries, Thomas (LCMS Foundation) to Minnesota South District 5/20/11 Sternberg, Timothy (CUEnet) to Northwest District 6/15/11 Changes Within District: Armbrust, Kevin (candidate) installed Associate Pastor at St. Paul, Des Peres, MO 5/22/11 by D. Smith Foss, Richard (Eisleben, Scott City, MO) installed as Intentional Interim Pastor at Our Savior, Fenton, MO 7/3/11 by R. Lange Sell, Mark (candidate) installed Faith, Washington, MO 5/15/11 by M. Harrison Steensma, Richard (associate pastor, Timothy, Blue Springs) installed as senior administrative pastor of same 6/5/11 by R. Mirly Deceased: Dierking Norman (Pilgrim/ St. John, Linn/Drake) 7/7/11 Congregations: Lutheran Mission of the Good Shepherd, Kansas City, MO merged with LUMA, a Recognized Service Organization of Synod
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The Voice of Missouri
District News Family Bible Found in Rubble; Joplin Aid Continues
Volunteers from Lutheran churches all over the midwest and across the country have traveled to Joplin to help Immanuel Lutheran Church and the residents of the community with clean-up efforts. A group of 35 from St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Concordia, Mo., went to Joplin the last weekend of June expecting to focus on demolition work. However, the group was excited to discover a treasure. During their work on one house, the homeowner asked for help in her search for a Bible that had been given to her by her parents. She said to look in an area of her home that was once her bedroom; the group sifted through the debris and found her treasured Bible. The group from Concordia provided medical staff and supplies for the clinic that was operating out of Immanuel. They also brought three skid loaders, a stump grinder, air compressors, generators, a multitude of hand tools, shovels, rakes and enthusiasm to help those in need. Some stocked shelves and sorted items in the relief center set up in trailers behind the church, and others cleaned up about nine different lots and piled the debris for the Federal Emergency Management Agency to pick up. The group had the opportunity to meet, A family Bible reclaimed! talk with, and work alongside some of the other homeowners. It was very rewarding to see and hear how thankful and appreciative they were. Family photos and other heirlooms were found at some of the homes and preserved for the owners. A group works to clear debris to the street for pickup.
The trip was a wonderful opportunity to serve and share God’s love by individuals using their various talents and abilities. The group worshiped at Good Shepherd Lutheran, Carthage, Mo., before traveling home. Plans for a return trip to Joplin mid-July were being made before the group even returned home. Approximately 30 from St. Paul’s, Holy Cross, Emma, Mo., and St. Matthew, Ernestville, Mo., were part of the follow-up trip. In working with volunteers in Joplin, 10 sites were selected for the group to concentrate its efforts. Tornados have affected small towns and large cities across Missouri this year. Weather radio alerts, television reports, and tornado sirens have sensitized people across the district to the challenges the people of Joplin and Immanuel are facing. Visit www.lutheranchurchcharities.org to volunteer. Glasses and masks protect workers from debris and infection. I was asked yesterday if there is much opportunity to share the Gospel in the work we are doing for tornado recovery. I have to tell you that it is the greatest of opportunities. Here are a few glimpses ... A woman cries with relief as a group arrives to help her pack up her life. She doesn’t know where she is going to live, but she suddenly knows she is not alone. She asks, “Why are you doing this? I’m just a person. You don’t even know me.” A man returns to the “store” for the umpteenth time. He needs a bath – badly. It’s over 100 degrees in the trailers, but the shelves are stocked and tidy, and he is welcomed by name. He says, “Ma’am, you know my name?” An elderly couple sits at the table outside Kimberly’s office. They tell a familiar tale: the insurance company has depreciated the value of their home. It’s going to cost too much to clear the debris, there isn’t enough money. They are sure there is nothing we can do to help, the job is too big. But they promised those nice people on the Gator who bring the water that they would come for lunch and talk to someone. We smile and sign them up for a crew. They say, “You can do that? Really? You have people who will do that for free? For us?”
A single dad drops his 3-year-old off for child care at Martin Luther. He’s working full time. There is no one to help. Everything is gone. When he comes to pick up his son, there are boxes waiting for him. There are pajamas and clothes for his son. There are sheets, towels, pots and pans. New clothes for him too. Hot Wheels and laundry detergent. He says, “I can’t believe someone did this for me.” Aren’t all these stories really our stories? “I can’t believe God knows my name. I’m just a person. I’m dirty with sin and in need of a bath–badly. I can’t ever seem to clean myself up or get my act together. I thought my problems were too big for anyone to help. The cost was too great. I didn’t expect His forgiveness to be free. I can’t believe someone did this for me. Jesus died for me?” Before we started working on tornado recovery, we had to look for opportunities to share the Gospel. I’m sure they were there. I’m sure I didn’t notice most of the time. We don’t have to look anymore. It’s easy now. People want to know why we are helping them. We answer, “Because Jesus helped me, and He told me to help you too.” Your sister in Christ, Lyla Glaskey
Budget: continued from page 1
• $451,125 Events – This category includes the following events scheduled for the fiscal 2011/2012 budget year: Gospel Conference, Kitchen Sink Conference, Professional Church Workers Conference, Senior High Gathering, Junior High School Retreat, the district convention, as well as numerous smaller workshops. What is the difference between mission and support of congregations and church workers? Is counseling a professional church worker, helping him or her to remain healthy and Christ-centered supporting mission? Is helping our schools be the best they can be by helping them get accredited, and thereby being better able to draw students from the community, mission work? Is holding events for our youth and for our professional church workers, for them to share ideas and encourage one another mission work? These are all what I call Synod, walking together … in mission and ministry.
District Budget Expenses
The Voice of Missouri