We like to celebrate. Anniversaries give us time to reflect and count our blessings. But noting significant events in our synod’s history is far more than a time to say, “Thank you, dear God!” Our history helps shape our future. We want to learn how God’s grace alone is to be credited with every aspect of our salvation, including our being chosen from eternity. We want to learn how faithfulness to God’s Word takes precedence over earthly relationships. We want to learn how small beginnings can yield large blessings when doing things God’s way. We want to learn how commitment to the teachings of God’s Word as confessed in the Book of Concord means desiring to educate souls in the way of truth. We want to learn how thankfulness to Christ for all his blessings moves us to share the gospel in developing and maintaining missions.
If you have not already done so, we urge you to read the commemorative edition of our synod’s chief periodical, the Lutheran Sentinel. It contains fifteen articles which recount blessings for our ELS and point us to proper points of emphases for our future. Extra copies of the May-June issue of the Sentinel have been printed. Please access also the electronic version at els.org/about/ls/lutheran-sentinel-archive/
John A. Moldstad
Centennial Convention of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod, the 62nd Annual Meeting of Bethany Lutheran College, Inc., and the 3rd Annual Meeting of the Lutheran Schools of America, Inc. will be held June 17-21, 2018 on the campus of Bethany Lutheran College in Mankato, Minnesota.
- Theme: “Proclaim the Wonders God Has Done: His Enduring Grace”
- Essayist: Peter Faugstad. Essay to be presentation on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons at 1:30 p.m. in the Sports & Fitness Center
- Chaplain: Bernt Tweit
- Tuesday morning devotion: Egil Edvardsen (Norway)
- Wednesday morning devotion: Jamie Cortez (Peru)
- Synod Sunday Centennial Service, June 17, 4:30 p.m. with Choral Union Choir in Trinity Chapel
- Liturgists: Adolph Harstad, Shawn Stafford
- Exordium: John Moldstad
- Preacher: Craig Ferkenstad
- Centennial Program, Tuesday, June 19, 5:00 p.m. in Trinity Chapel followed by light hors d’oeuvres reception in Honsey Hall (donation basket available; dinner on your own) – Can’t attend? The live stream will be available at els.org/streaming
- Commemoration of the 50th anniversary of mission work in Peru, Wednesday, June 20, 10:30 a.m. in the Sports & Fitness Center
- Communion Service, Wednesday, June 20, 7:30 p.m. in Trinity Chapel
- Liturgist: Joshua Mayer
- Preacher: Glenn Obenberger
- Deaths to be noted on Monday, June 18, 1:00 p.m. in the Sports & Fitness Center
- Mildred Gullixson (1923-2017)
- Paul Madson (1927-2018)
- Carolyn Wosje (1934-2017)
- Anniversaries of ordination to be observed on Tuesday, June 19, 1:00 p.m. in the Sports & Fitness Center
- Timothy Erickson – 40 years
- Gaylin Schmeling – 40 years
You are invited to join the pastors and delegates for any of these events!
Centennial Observance at Lime Creek: On Saturday, June 16, the ELS Historical Society will revisit the convention of one hundred years ago. The theme of the day will be “Still Under the Oaks,” beginning at 3:00 p.m. at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church (Albert Lea, Minnesota). Following the program and catered lunch, a brief commemorative service will be held at Lime Creek Lutheran Church (Lake Mills, Iowa). The registration fee for the program and lunch is $15. Registration is due June 1 and should be sent to ELS Historical Society, 6 Browns Ct, Mankato MN 56001. Anyone interested is welcome to partake in this special event.
Summer Music Camp: Bethany Lutheran College will host a Summer Music Camp for choir, band, and strings from June 16-21. This was formerly the Honor Choir Camp, but has been expanded to include instrumentalists. The week includes vocal and instrumental music study, performance, and recreation for current 9-12 graders. Find the application forms on the BLC website: www.blc.edu. The closing concert at noon on Thursday, June 21, is free and open to the public.
Bethany Auxiliary Tea: The Mankato area Bethany Auxiliary will host a tea at the home of Pres. and Mrs. Pfeifer on Monday, June 18, from 1:30-3:30.
Cross-stitch Presentation: Cross-stitch, the network of Women’s Mission Societies, will host a presentation on Monday, June 18 at 7:00 p.m. in the Ylvisaker Fine Arts Center.
Apologetics and Worldview Seminar: An Apologetics and Worldview Seminar will be held Thursday, June 21, at Bethany Lutheran College. The seminar is free and an evening meal will be offered ($15) before the last presentation. Presenters will be Dr. John Eidsmoe, Dr. Ryan MacPherson, Prof. Allen Quist, Pastor Joe Abrahamson, Pastor Steven Sparley. For more information (schedule, list of topics, reserving a dinner seat), go to www.blc.edu/apologetics.
On Sunday, May 6, Rock Dell Lutheran of rural Belview, Minnesota celebrated its 145th anniversary. The Rev. Mark DeGarmeaux was a guest preacher who presented a sermon in Norwegian.
On Sunday, April 29, 2018, the Rev. Ed Bryant was installed as pastor of Our Savior, Grants Pass, Oregon, and Faith, Medford, Oregon. ELS Vice President, the Rev. Glenn Obenberger, preached for the occasion and Alternate Visitor, the Rev. Jesse Jacobsen, performed the rite of installation. Other pastors present and giving scriptural blessings were: the Rev. James Ruppel of Eugene, Oregon, and the Rev. Glenn Smith of Klamath Falls, Oregon.
Dr. Michael Smith was commissioned to serve at Asia Lutheran Seminary (WELS; Hong Kong) on May 20, 2018. Dr. Smith has been the New Testament professor at our Bethany Lutheran Theological Seminary for the last sixteen years. We pray that God’s blessings rest upon Mike and Anita as they take up this new challenge.
The Board for Youth Outreach is tasked to promote the spiritual education and Christian fellowship of the youth of the synod. Especially over the coming summer months, youth camps will take place throughout the country and the Lutheran Youth Association (LYA) Convention will be held in Seattle, Washington on July 26-29. This year’s LYA convention will be a special celebration of the 100th anniversary of the reorganization of the ELS. You can still sign up for the convention (els.org/lya18/).
This year we will observe the 100th year of proclaiming the wonders God has done through the ELS. Think of it, not only 100 years of sharing the Gospel through our congregations but also through our missionaries at home and around the world! May our Lord bless us with generosity as we gather in convention and celebrate with our “thanks,” giving to our Lord. Gifts may be brought to convention Synod Sunday or Wednesday communion services. You may also send them to Anniversary Offering, 6 Browns Ct, Mankato MN 56001. Another great option is to go to els.org/offering and hit the “donate” button. Also on that site, watch the latest video entitled, Proclaiming His Wonders at Home–Your Gifts at Work.
Bethany Lutheran College (Mankato, Minnesota) welcomes applications for two Resident Hall Coordinator positions. The Resident Hall Coordinator is a live-in professional who operates as a member of the Residential Life Staff, working to create a positive, Christian atmosphere that encourages academic, spiritual, social, and personal growth. A complete position description and application instructions can be found at www.blc.edu/employment.
The Rev. Jesse DeDeyne has resigned his call to Concordia, Hood River, Oregon, and Bethany, The Dalles, Oregon, effective May 31. He intends to enter a doctoral studies program in Texas.
The Rev. Richard Tragasz has resigned his call to Grace, Weston, Ohio, effective June 10. Richard and family are planning to move to the state of Missouri.
June 10 – Ordination of Christian Walz at Good Shepherd (Indianola, IA)
June 17-21 – Centennial Synod Convention
July 1 – 100th Anniversary of Scarville Synod (Scarville, Iowa)
July 1 – Ordination of Noah Thompson at River Heights (East Grand Forks, MN)
July 26-29 – LYA Convention in Tacoma, Washington