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WORDS OF FAITH - August 19, 2010

posted Aug 22, 2010, 10:00 PM by Matt Anderson

An occasional newsletter for the members and friends of Faith Lutheran Mission Church of Eau Claire

August 19, 2010


It has now been one year since that fateful week in Minneapolis that the Evengelical Lutheran Church in America officially placed experience and conscience before Scripture in the work and life of the church and its people.


Many of us found ourselves surprised.  Others were frustrated.  Still others were angry, wounded, betrayed and sad.  The following weeks and months amplified and rotated those emotions as we found our local congregations either turning a blind eye or raising a toast to the Churchwide Assembly decisions on morality.


But, what an awesome God we have!  From an incredible human- (and humanist-) made mess, God finds a way to proclaim and be proclaimed.  As Romans 8:28 reminds us, “...in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” 


So, what’s the good?

·        Many of us who were “asleep at the switch” got a sudden wake-up call, and realized upon reflection that the ELCA had been careening down a steep slope for several years.

·        We also discovered that there were collections of confessional Lutherans who had been warning of the coming of this day...people collected in groups like WordAlone, Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ, Lutheran CORE and others.  Their writings and web sites served as a balm, and a reassurance that we weren’t alone.

·        We found one another.  Though many of us are personally long in the tooth, through us God created something new:  Faith Lutheran Mission Church.  And we’re not alone, as we’ve seen member congregations in the LCMC explode from 219 one year ago to 496 today.

·        We discovered preaching and teaching inspired by the Holy Spirit as many of us have not heard for years.  People named Anderson, Nelson, Johnson, Smith, Spaulding, Stoutenburg, Duesenberg, Richardson, Jeffers, Christiansen, Hibbard and Lenz have presented God’s Word to us with such clarity that Word weaves into our beings to be used throughout the week and throughout our lives.

·        We find ourselves poised for true evangelism and mission, able to focus on making disciples of all the nations free of the shackles of bureaucracies and bishops.


In quiet moments, we mourn the familiar fellowship and even the buildings we have left behind, but we also know that our God is faithful, that we remain as we have always been in the one invisible church, and he is leading us to new and better things, to his glory!  Praise God for his transformational power, and pray for continued transformation in our own lives, for the church, for all Lutherans, for all Christians and for this world.


The Announcement for Pastoral Applications is Out

As of today, the LCMC web site has posted our pastoral position.  You can see it for yourself at http://www.lcmc.net/leadershiplink.html#wi.  The posting is the result of action by the church council at its Monday night meeting to approve the Pastoral Profile and Congregational Profile (as shared in last week’s Words of Faith) and the Community Profile, available at www.faithlutheranmc.org under “Our Community.”


On Tuesday night, the Call Committee began working on interview questions for the candidates that get to the heart of the areas expressed in the Pastoral Profile.  If you have ideas for questions, you can contact call committee members Bob Moore, Janet Hadt, Janet Parkhurst, Matt Anderson, Gail Larson or Dean Kallenbach individually, or send them your ideas all at once by e-mailing callcommittee@faithlutheranmc.org.  The call committee meets again Tuesday, August 24 to finalize interview questions, and begin to vet applications, if any are available at that point.  The committee will also meet with the church council for part of its meeting to discuss compensation options for a pastor.


If you know of faithful Lutheran pastors who might be a match for Faith Lutheran Mission Church, please make them aware of our position posting.


Research Continues on Victory Baptist Building

The church council continues to follow the congregation’s direction to explore all options in regard to the offer by the disbanded Victory Baptist congregation to sell Faith Lutheran Mission Church its building and land on Hogeboom Street. The council appointed Vice-President Chuck Olson and Treasurer Rollie Larson to get information from potential lenders in the event the congregation decides to acquire the property. 


Those options will be reviewed at a special council meeting August 24th.  It’s the goal of the council to present those possibilities at the Special Congregational Meeting during our fellowship time after 6 p.m. August 29th at the Lutheran Church of St. Matthew.  The sole agenda topic for that meeting is to decide how we should move forward relating to that worship space.


Rice and APPLE on Sunday

No, that’s not the menu of the fellowship meal.  Pastor Bill Rice from Gloria Dei Lutheran Church of Tomah will be leading our worship once more on Sunday at 5 p.m. in the fellowship hall of The Lutheran Church of St. Matthew.  As usual, there will be food and fellowship to follow.


During the fellowship period, we’ll hear a brief presentation from Melinda Gardner, the executive director of the APPLE Pregnancy Care Center in Eau Claire.  APPLE PCC is one of the two recipients of Faith Lutheran Mission Church’s mission offering for August.  Melinda will provide some handouts and display materials to elaborate on the organization’s efforts to bring a Christian perspective while aiding problem pregancies with love and encouragement.  If you’d like to do some homework in advance of Melinda’s presentation, go to www.applepcc.org.  And, thanks to Linda and Dick Buck for bringing this organization to the attention of the Mission Committee.


Choir Practices Begins Next Week!

The long-awaiting first monthly choir practice is set for 7 p.m., Thursday, August 26 in the St. Matthew Fellowship Hall. Bob LaMont has volunteered to lead our group of singers.  The monthly rehearsal will prepare the choir for the presentation of anthems during the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month.


Any and all wishing to sing with the choir may do so...no auditions required!  Just come to rehearsal Thursday night of next week.


Bob’s Bible Study Wraps Up

Those who took part in Bob Moore’s Bible study this spring and summer will want to plan to wrap up the study Wednesday, August 25.  The gathering will be at Bob and Elaine’s home at 3106 Brian Street...Elaine says the coffee will be on!  It starts at 7 p.m.  Please come!


New and Notes

·        We reported last week that Dallas Lutheran Church had failed 49-49 in its effort to extract itself from the ELCA. I’m informed that 35 or so individuals from Dallas have begun meeting together for weekly worship in anticipation of forming a new congregation in southern Barron County.  Pray for them.  We’ll provide news as it becomes available.

·        Sunday is the Music and Crafts Festival at Stanfold in Rice Lake.  Admission is free, with lunch available.  Proceeds from the lunch go to help projects at Stanfold.  The music lineup has changed slightly – here’s the new schedule:

Noon - 12:30  Make a Joyful Noise

12:45-1:15     We Three

1:30-2:00       Montanis

2:15-2:45       Shelly & Dad

3:00-3:45       Anything Goes  & Sing-a-long

4:00-4:30       Pat Hogan

4:45-5:15       Grace Abounds

5:30-6:00       Good Medicine   

6:15-7:00       The Elmer Family Band   

·        Remember that Grace Lutheran’s centennial celebration takes place in Owen Park on August 29, with worship at10:30, and food and other activities to follow.

·        Coming in October (just six weeks away—Yikes!) is the LCMC’s annual gathering October 3-6 in Golden Valley. The council will select official delegates, but all LCMC members are welcome to take part.  Go to www.lcmc.net to learn more.

·        Also, the day before the LCMC gathering on October 2, the Augustana District is having a Women’s Gathering atFaith Lutheran Church in HutchinsonMinnesota from 9:30-3 p.m.  Other information is sketchy at this point, but you may want to include this on your calendar – perhaps we can get a car or two of women to attend.


The Last Word

            “Pray, and let God worry.”   Martin Luther