Dear Fellow Workers in Christ’s Kingdom:
In this month of August another school year begins for our synod’s flagship of higher education, our beloved Bethany Lutheran College in Mankato, Minnesota. This year happens to mark the 90th anniversary of the key moment (April 15, 1926) when a group of ELS laymen and pastors gathered on the campus of Bethany to consider a very important question: Would it be practical to buy the college for an asking price of $90,000? It would not be until 1927 when the synod officially would take over the college by resolution, yet the dedication and prayerful foresight of those involved in that early decision cannot be overstated. What a blessing we have in being able to continue operating our own college, now offering over 20 majors for our students to pursue various walks of life with a solid Christian foundation. Bethany also serves as a mission arm, where a number of students each year having little religious background are brought into contact for the first time with the saving gospel of our Lord Jesus. Please pray for our college! Pray that God blesses our faithful teachers, administrators, and staff with another year of grace dedicated to promoting the “One Thing Needful.” And pray that many souls are touched with the life-giving Word of our Savior.
Blessings in Christ,
John A. Moldstad
Seoul Lutheran Theological Institute
Seoul Lutheran Theological Institute (SLTI; Seoul, Korea) is in session every Saturday and for week-long intensive courses when guest professors are teaching. Visiting professors include the Rev. John Vogt (WELS), formerly of Biblicum in Sweden and St. Sophia Seminary in Ukraine, as well as representatives of the ELS Board for World Outreach. The institute is directed by the Rev. Dr. Sung Gyu Choi (left), pictured with the three primary SLTI students: Vicar Jae Woong Kim, and two Korean-Chinese men who are preparing to reach out to their own demographic in Korea and greater Asia. To learn more or offer support: www.elsworldoutreach.org.
Home Mission Construction
Progress is being made on the church building for Hope Lutheran in Farmington, Minnesota. They have been choosing colors, ordering seating, etc. The congregation is planning a community open house in the new building on October 1, with their first worship service to be held in the space on October 2. A formal dedication is planned for October 30. You can find the congregation online at www.hope-farmington.com and www.facebook.com/hope.farmington.
Candidate of Theology Daniel Ruiz was ordained and installed as co-pastor at Hope Lutheran, Leander, Texas, on July 17, 2016. The Rev. David Thompson preached the sermon and the Rev. Micah Ernst, Circuit 10 Visitor, performed the rites of ordination and installation. Pastor Brad Kerkow also serves the mission congregation on the northwest side of Austin.
Candidate of Theology Andrew Soule was ordained at Rock Dell Lutheran Church on July 17, 2016, and installed as pastor of Rock Dell and Our Savior’s in Belview, Minnesota. The Rev. David Jay Webber preached the sermon, the Rev. Craig Ferkenstad served as liturgist, the Rev. Timothy Zenda served as lector, and the Rev. Timothy Hartwig performed the rites of ordination and installation.
The synod Handbook has been updated to reflect action taken at this year’s convention and now is available on the synod’s website. You can find it under Our Work Together – Administration – Handbook of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (els.org/download/administration/Handbook.html).
Part I Colloquy
The Rev. Steven Brockdorf, who serves as pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church in Hillsboro, Oregon, has now successfully completed Part I of his colloquy. Members of the Colloquy Committee are: the Rev. G. Obenberger, the Rev. G. Schmeling, the Rev. E. Ekhoff, the Rev. K. Anderson, the Rev. J. Petersen, R. Younge, A. Quist, and Pres. Moldstad. No date has been set yet for Part II.
Anniversary Offering Rollout in Your Congregation
How are your plans coming for your congregational offering rollout this fall? Would you like more help in planning? Call 507-344-7311! Or, if you lack materials, go to els.org/offering for most of the resources you will need to present this offering to your congregations.
If you did not receive your materials either at convention or by mail, please contact Pastor Dan Basel, committee chairman, at 507-344-7311. He will get you your materials ASAP. Also, Pastor Basel and other committee members have some preaching dates open. Don’t hesitate to call if you would like to include them in your offering presentation.
Remember, while materials help, no video and no pamphlet can replace sharing your enthusiastic support for this offering.
Upcoming Events: http://www.els.org/about/calendar/
August 2 – Board of Trustees
August 3 – Centennial Committee
August 3 – Synod Review Committee
August 4-5 – Board for Home Outreach
August 8-9 – Board of Regents
August 14 – Ordination of Jeffrey Hendrix in Ulen, MN
August 15-16 – Doctrine Committee
August 17 – Board for World Outreach
August 26 – ELS-WELS-CLC meeting in Mankato, MN
September 15-16 – Circuit Visitors’ Conference
September 20 – Missions Advancement Project, Inc.
September 26 – Bethany Lutheran College Women’s Auxiliary Day