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Posts Tagged ‘LWML’

Delivering the Word

Thayer-Shelby-Round

Aberdeen, SD-Funeral service for Shelby Jo Thayer, 23, of Aberdeen and formerly of Forbes took place at 10:00 am Thursday, October 1, 2015 at Zion Lutheran Church in Ellendale.

This has been bothering me since I heard about it earlier in the week.  The death of the young is always startling and difficult and the death of any individual is a tremendous loss.  Sadly, we are in a world where death is ubiquitous.  The Old Testament has a lot to say about that – “all flesh is like the grass.  The grass withers and the flowers fall but the Word of the Lord endures forever”.  Our job is to get the Word out.

Shelby’s mother is Darci Wolff.  Darcy is in charge of the LWML newsletter and publicity department for the North Dakota District LWML.  She has been active in the LWML for years.  This Sunday is LWML Sunday and in preparing a service for that I have been thinking hard about Darci and Shelby and all the Pastors that would be praying and consoling and preaching to family and friends.

Darci’s job was to get the word about the LWML.  The LWML’s job is to get the Word out to the “lost and erring”.  The Word is Jesus.  As Pastor’s our jobs are to get the Word out and the Word is Jesus.  Jesus is the Word and that Word is light of men.  That Word pronounces us right with God and then actually makes us right with God.

In our world today Jesus is impugned and ignored and laughed at and those who speak of him are often ridiculed, sometimes marginalized, and maybe even killed.  Sometimes even in our circles we get the feeling that for many Jesus is irrelevant for most of their life, until a baby needs to be baptized, or a wedding needs to take place, or someone gets sick or dies.  Suddenly Jesus is relevant but….

An old Lutheran preacher by the name of Helmut Thielicke wrote…….

“But the Word of the Lord—and Jesus Christ himself is this Word—is relevant at every station of life. It is there at the cradle and the grave. It is there when wedding bells ring, and it is there in the night of suffering. It sounded forth its “Let there be” on the morning of creation, and it will be the Word that will not pass away when heaven and earth pass away and are toppled into the great grave of the universe. It is there, always there. It is there with its blessing even before we understand it, when it is spoken at the cradle, in baptism, and in our mother’s prayers. And when we grow to consciousness we find that already it is there. And when we prepare for our last hour, when we no longer feel the touch of the beloved hand that cannot let us go, when our dreams dissolve and those we love are left behind on the hither shore, when the songs of birds are silenced and the sun goes dark, then, even then, this Word does not desert us; now it imbues with substance the prayer of bygone days: “When I depart, depart thou not from me.” No, it does not depart; it comes to meet us on the other shore. Any pastor who deals with the dying learns again and again that these words penetrate to levels and depths that no human words can reach. They are the last companions as we cross the unknown border, and they are the first to greet us on the other side, where they are still true and valid.”

For Darci and her family and all of Shelby’s friends; for the Pastors’ who preach and those who listen; these words and The Word, are our strength and our hope and our song.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But the Word of the Lord—and Jesus Christ himself is this Word—is relevant at every station of life. It is there at the cradle and the grave. It is there when wedding bells ring, and it is there in the night of suffering. It sounded forth its “Let there be” on the morning of creation, and it will be the Word that will not pass away when heaven and earth pass away and are toppled into the great grave of the universe. It is there, always there. It is there with its blessing even before we understand it, when it is spoken at the cradle, in baptism, and in our mother’s prayers. And when we grow to consciousness we find that already it is there. And when we prepare for our last hour, when we no longer feel the touch of the beloved hand that cannot let us go, when our dreams dissolve and those we love are left behind on the hither shore, when the songs of birds are silenced and the sun goes dark, then, even then, this Word does not desert us; now it imbues with substance the prayer of bygone days: “When I depart, depart thou not from me.” No, it does not depart; it comes to meet us on the other shore. Any pastor who deals with the dying learns again and again that these words penetrate to levels and depths that no human words can reach. They are the last companions as we cross the unknown border, and they are the first to greet us on the other side, where they are still true and valid.

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Where In the World is President Kaye? Part 2

kay in Philippines

So take a look at President Kay’s face.  She is the one in the middle of the picture with the cart and the yellow bags.  The look on her face is familiar.  She used to look at me like that when I was the LWML Advisor and I would get frustrated with all the by-law talk.  I asked her to bring me something back from the Philippines and I hope this is my stuff but my guess it is supplies for the Deaconess’ or the Seminary at Baguio.

Where is she?  My guess is, in this picture, downtown Manila.  Christmas decoration are up there too.  Sad.  I wonder of the Pastors in the Lutheran church there play Christmas Hymns during Advent?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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LWML Veterans

LWML ladies

Martin Luther once said, “We cannot give God anything; for everything is already His, and all we have comes from Him. We can only give him praise, thanks, and honor.” When our sisters in the faith met at the LWML’s organizing convention in 1942, one of their first acts was to select mission projects to support. First was the support of Christ Church Chapel for the Deaf in Cleveland in the amount of $15,000. In postwar Europe, they sent aid to children orphaned by the ravages of World War II.

The LWML at Zion English Lutheran Church had a night of recognition and thanks for the “veteran members”.  They served a dinner and Halley Ulland sang some original songs as entertainment.  There was also a display of LWML records from years past that is an amazing look back at the “way things used to be”.  Younger members served the meal and a good time was had by all.  The work the LWML does in supporting mission and ministry around the world starts at small gatherings like these.  These women who were a part of ministries that started at the beginning remember twenty five cent “dues” and helping pay the tuition of congregational students at “our schools”.  I didn’t have the heart to tell them that one of the students they supported went to Bethany in Mankato which is a school affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Synod but the fact remains that over $100,000,000 has been raised for mission and ministry by women like this.  They paid for postage stamps and collected soup labels.  They paid for altar paraments and orphanages.

Kaye Kreklau the LWML National President was there (top row left) and brought some wonderful favors.  I didn’t get the permission of these women to name them on a blog so I will leave that to others.  If you know someone beside Kaye in this picture you can “tag” them and then when you get the chance you can thank them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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They Also Serve Who……………make Lefse?

lefse

lefse 4

lefse2lefse packager

I don’t know  how to break this to those outside of Minnesota North and North Dakota but lefse is kind of a big deal around here.  I heard that 1/2 a slice went for a buck at the Norsk Hostfest in Minot.  Each package that was made by the members of Trinity in Drayton contained three lefses and I’m not sure what they sold them for, but it is a mission fundraiser.  These projects like the LWML Mites have big dividends.  The LWML at Zion in Grafton gave away $1500 spread over five projects Internationally, in the District and in Grafton.  I am humbly proud of these endeavors.  I would have volunteered at the lefse bake but I am allergic to flour and potato peeling and terrified of women with rolling pins.  Thanks and God bless to all who served and worked.

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LWML and Partnerships

Judy Anderson and Kay Kreklau at Trinity

“This little site is designed to help us to see how the body of Christ functions, communicates, works, struggles and cares up here, in this part of God’s creation. Up North, where you might see the Northern Lights, we are hoping to give glimpses of God’s light shining in our hearts as we “live together as Christ’s people”. We hope to hear from those people in the months and years ahead as paths “cross” and partnerships are formed and we witness, show mercy and share our “life together” in Christ.”  I keep going back to this statement that I wrote when we started this blog site in April.  There are so many things that churches are doing corporately to show the love of Christ in the world.  There are so many things that groups are doing to show the love of God in the world and so many things that individuals are doing too.  I am stunned at the programs and projects that the Board of International Missions looks at that take place all around the world.  I am completely amazed when I hear of the different projects that individuals are involved with.  We want to encourage all of that and at the same time focus on things that we can to together.

The Lutheran Womens Missionary League has always been a great source of inspiration and help to me in many ways.  There is a true partnership with the LWML at all levels from the congregational units to the District to the Synod.  At least there should be.  Kay Kreklau from Drayton North Dakota was recently elected to be the President of the national LWML at Peoria.  She was installed and commissioned but we had a little ceremony of blessing and “sending” at Trinity on Sunday July 10th.  Judy Anderson is the President of the Northeast Zone of the North Dakota District and she gave Kay the flowers.

I served as the counselor for the LWML and can attest to the meticulous care that they take with their mites and figuring out how best to use these gifts to extend the work of “mission and mercy”.  I have participated in retreats and presentations with the LWML of the Minnesota North District and I continue to be impressed with their commitment to bring the lost and erring into fellowship with Christ and to strengthen the faith and prayer life of their members.  I am getting to know Cheryl Petersen who is the LWML President in Minnesota North.  Dorothy Abrahamson of MN North can tell you all about the length and breath of the projects that these women undertake.  Sue Corwin the President of the North Dakota District LWML is a quiet example of service and caring.  Joan Johnson my friend from Grand Rapids is an example of the LWML’s evangelical soul.   Kay will be a great servant leader for this organization and I look forward to all kinds of partnerships.

One last word of advice to the Pastors who may be reading this.  It is a mistake that many of us make to think of the LWML as the altar guild or the funeral lunch crowd.  They do those things and they do them willingly and carefully but they are and can be so much more.  My prayer is that every Pastor when he works with the LWML at any level can say what Paul said –

“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, 5 for your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now”.  Philippians 1:3-5

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