Dear Members and Friends of the ELS:
Do you worry? … One of the great Lutheran hymnwriters is Paul Gerhardt (1607–1676). If anyone had reason to worry—-at least by human standards—-it was Gerhardt. His life’s story saw much pain. Three of this pastor’s five children died suddenly; then a fourth-—a son-—died also; his wife became sick and died (on Easter Sunday!); and he himself endured numerous attacks against his conservative and confessional theology. But his trust in the Savior held firm, as expressed in his many hymns. One of his best is the Easter hymn, “Awake, My Heart, with Gladness.”
Are you struggling with troubles and cares? Are you consumed with guilt and uncertainty? Take a great lesson from Gerhardt. We have a Savior who has completed our salvation from sin and every evil that troubles us. Christ’s rising means new life for us every day as His baptized children! This is reflected in this verse from Gerhardt’s hymn focused on the resurrection of our Lord: “This is a sight that gladdens– | What peace it doth impart! | Now nothing ever saddens | The joy within my heart. | No gloom shall ever shake, | No foe shall ever take | The hope which God’s own Son | In love for me hath won” (ELH 341:3). Have a wonderful Easter celebration!
John A. Moldstad
Anniversary at Cape Girardeau
Members and friends of Scriptural Evangelical Lutheran Church in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, gathered to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the congregation on March 24, 2019. Pres. Moldstad was on hand to preach the sermon for the occasion. Pastor Mark Rogers has been serving the congregation as its pastor from 2010–2014 and also 2015–present. Scriptural formed as its own church when they broke away from Trinity (LCMS) of Egypt Mills as a result of doctrinal issues at that time. The congregation was association with the Lutheran Church of the Reformation (LCR) for several years and then was independent until joining the Evangelical Lutheran Synod in 1990. A distinguishing mark of the church’s tranquil location to the north of Cape Girardeau proper is a twenty-foot high white cross that was erected in 1972 in its cemetery at the back of the church.
Board for World Outreach
Back: Wayne Halvorson (advisory), Brad Kerkow, Dan Browning, Tom Heyn (administrator), Tim Bartels, Steve Sparley
Front: John Moldsatd, Tim Buelow, Matt Behmer, Rodney Rivera, John Petersen, Matt Lukasek
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church and Grace and Truth School in Rajamundry, India
Pictured here is one of the classrooms in the 140-person school. The Rev. Kalyan Gollapalli, a graduate of our Bethany Lutheran Theological Seminary and the son of the district president of Lutheran Mission of Salvation–India (LMSI), serves as the pastor of the congregation and school. If you would like to contribute to the seven mission fields (Chile, India, South Korea, Peru, Latvia, Czech Republic, Ukraine) that we assist in proclaiming the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ as fellow members under our Lord’s Great Commission, we urge you to use the following address: ELS Board for World Outreach, 6 Browns Ct, Mankato MN 56001.
Death of Ukrainian Doctor
Nicholas and Kerry Laper report: “Dr. Laryssa Chorna age 51, passed away on February 22, 2019 due to complications of brain cancer. A service of Christian burial was held in the family apartment on February 23, 2019 with burial at North Ternopil Cemetery. Laryssa is remembered for her bright blue eyes and warm smile. She was a compassionate Christian, faithful wife, loving mother, wonderful friend, and employee. Laryssa devoted her life to others, especially children. Dr. Chorna was employed as the Head Physician at Gift of Life Medical Clinic for a decade. Please pray that the Lord comfort her two sons, granddaughter and husband as they grieve. Thank you to those who contributed to the care of Laryssa.”
Synod Convention 2019
Remember that the Synod Convention is scheduled for June 23–27 this year! This is one week later than our most recent convention. The theme this year is “My Help Comes From the Lord, the Maker of Heaven and Earth.” Convention registration materials are available at els.org/convention.
Speakers at our Synod Convention
Our convention essayist this year will be Dr. Doyle Holbird from our Bethany Lutheran College. He will focus his thoughts on the beauties of God’s creation in opposition to the widely embraced theory of evolution. Our chaplain for this year is the Rev. Ben Wiechmann; other devotion leaders will be the Rev. Dan Ruiz and the Rev. Paul Webber. The Communion service preacher will be the Rev. Christian Eisenbeis. On Synod Sunday, the Rev. Rodney Flohr will give the sermon.
Thank you, Sig!
For 35 years Prof. Sigurd Lee has served on our synod’s Committee for Archives and History. As Sig is now resigning his position on the seven-member committee, we wish to express our gratitude for his many years of service to our synod and our Bethany Lutheran College.
New Cross-stitch Website
Keep up on current projects and information on the new website created by Cross-stitch committee member Stephanie Wentzlaff! www.cross-stitch.els.org
April 1–2 – Board for Lutheran Schools at Bethany, Port Orchard, WA
April 14 – President Moldstad to present at Bethany, The Dalles, OR
April 30–May 1 – Great Lakes Pastoral Conference at Holy Cross, Madison, WI
May 2–3 – West Coast Pastoral Conference at St. Luke, Mt. Vernon, WA
May 6 – Board of Trustees
May 7–8 – ELS Board of Regents
May 8 – Bethany Lutheran Theological Seminary Commencement, 4:00 p.m.
May 9–10 – Board for Home Outreach
May 10 – Bethany Lutheran College Commencement, 10:30 a.m.
May 22 – Great Plains Pastoral Conference
June 23–27 – Synod Convention