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WORDS OF FAITH - August 5, 2010

posted Aug 5, 2010, 9:56 PM by Matt Anderson

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

August 5, 2010


When long-time Lutherans hear the word “Stewardship,” certain images come to mind.  Temple talks.  Commitment cards.  Time and talent surveys.  Sermons on tithing.


But Sunday, Pastor Jerry Hibbard reminded us that part of good stewardship is to guard against greed and covetousness.  Seventeen of the 31 parables deal with proper use of property and treasure.  He pointed out that we need to use not only our intellect, but prayer to make decisions on resources and how we use or share them.  The congregation is a living unit, with each of us playing a part, and we must yield all to God.  All that God has made is good, if received with thankfulness.


Victory Baptist Tour


Resources and stewardship were very much on the minds and hearts of members who had the opportunity to tour Victory Baptist Church on Hogeboom on Sunday afternoon.  Several members took advantage of the two-hour open house to look over this building that has been offered for sale to us by the Baptist congregation that disbanded last month.


Congregation president LaMoine Parkhurst led a discussion about the building during our fellowship time on Sunday. An inspector who looked over the building generally gave it a passing grade, with the note that the roof and siding would have to be dealt with relatively soon.  The building was recently insulated, and had a new furnace and central air conditioning unit installed.


The building holds about 100 worshipers (plus choir), and the sale would include everything in it, including the organ, piano, sound system, video system, kitchenware and furniture.  There is no parking lot, but the property comes with a side lot that currently is a grassy area with some lilac trees.


Victory Baptist came to Faith Lutheran Mission Church because they wanted to see the building remain a church, and go to a Bible-believing congregation.  They are willing to sell it to us for what they owe on the mortgage, about $85,000.  Based on current rates, continuing payment on the mortgage would cost about $500 per month.


While the fellowship presentation was not an official congregational meeting, a show of hands indicated an overwhelming interest in having the council pursue the matter further, and LaMoine promised they will!  Keep praying!


Pastoral Progress

The call committee approved a draft of a pastoral profile and a congregational profile at its meeting Tuesday night.  Both are required of the call process.  Also included is a community profile, which you can see on thewww.faithlutheranmc.org website, under “community.”  Lots of interesting stuff there.


The pastoral profile and congregational profile will be presented to the Executive Committee for edit on Monday.  That version will then be shared via this newsletter and at the fellowship presentation on Sunday, August 15 to provide the congregation with an opportunity for input prior to the August 16 council meeting.  On the 16th, the council is expected to act on the call packet, including terms of employment.


Meanwhile, the call committee is developing a draft letter of call and a recruitment plan, with the hope that word can go out to prospective pastors as soon as August 17, with hopes of scheduling interviews beginning in September.  Pray for God’s guidance through this process.


Council Fills Final Position

At the church council meeting July 19, Elaine Moore was added to the church council to bring its membership up to the maximum of 11.  She joins the other ten members of the council:  LaMoine, Chuck Olson, Roland Larson, Trista Anderson, Gene Fischer, Jack Daniel, Roger Flaten, Jean Anderson, Dale Johnson and Bob Flaten.  Congratulations and thanks, Elaine!


LCMC Names New Leader

The LCMC Board of Trustees announced last week that Rev. Mark Vander Tuig has accepted the call to serve as LCMC Service Coordinator. Mark is currently serving as Senior Pastor at Lutheran Church of the Cross (LCC), in Altoona, Iowa. He and his wife Candice have two grown daughters, Laura and Emily. Mark was called to LCC in 1990, when it was a small mission start. Today, Church of the Cross has around 1100 people in weekly worship and has deep roots in LCMC. Church of the Cross was a charter member of LCMC, organized and hosted the first LCMC Youth Rally and also hosted the 2005 LCMC Annual Gathering. Mark has been a part of the life of the association from its inception, including his service on the Ministry Board and his ministry alongside the LCMC congregations in Vietnam. We look forward to this new chapter in LCMC's life! Mark will be formally introduced to the association at the October Annual Gathering in Golden Valley, Minnesota.


Pastor Nelson Returns, Fellowship to have Mission Focus

Rev. Craig Nelson of Minong joins us again this Sunday, August 8 as our guest pastor.  You’ll recall that Craig grew up in the mission field as the child of missionaries, and was a missionary himself.  It’s only appropriate then that we spend a little time during our fellowship time on Sunday learning more about this months’ foreign mission being supported by Faith Lutheran Mission Church.  Janet and Lamoine Parkhurst will describe some of the work being done by their nephew Marty Ganong and wife Tina in Guinea, West Africa.  We hope to have a presentation later in the month by our local mission of the month, the APPLE Pregnancy Care Center of Eau Claire.



Prayers Needed for Pakistan

Earlier this summer, our mission support for one week went to the South Asian Friendship Center in Chicago and the work being done there by Doug and Margaret Grenawalt to spread the Gospel to Urdu-speaking people in that city. Prior to their time in Chicago, Doug and Margaret were missionaries in Pakistan.  Here’s an excerpt from the note they sent today to their prayer partners under the title “Pakistan Flood Update—More Prayers are Needed.”


Dear Praying Friends,


We have been watching the news of flooding in Pakistan with much interest and concern, knowing that rain and flooding in the north invariably leads to even more flooding further downstream for those cities located near the Indus River -- as well as those connected to it via irrigation canals.  We are grateful for all the prayers already being lifted up for this country that is being devastated by rain and flood waters.  It is very comforting to us, being so far away from being able to help them, to be able to share their need with you. 


Just today we heard news of Dera Ghazi Khan (where we lived and worked for the last 8 years of our time in Pakistan) and Jampur (where a number of believers live and where we ministered on a regular basis).  Jampur was entirely flooded up to the roofs of the houses.  All our dear ones seem to have made it out safely, however, so we are very glad about that.  But they will have lost everything.  In DGK, our neighborhood was evacuated for a time, but the water was diverted and so our compound is for now safe and dry, and our friends there are opening the place up as shelter to those who have lost their homes.  They are concerned, however, that the pressure from the flooding (which is still great) will compromise the canals which run through all the cities -- if this happens, those areas which are currently dry and safe will be in danger from uncontrolled water.  And more rain is predicted.  Normally, rain is a desired thing in this part of Pakistan, but now people are praying for the rain to stop!


Please continue to be in prayer for our people -- especially be praying for those canals to hold strong so that further devastation will be avoided.  Pray for the men who are leaders among the believers -- in particular Perwaiz, Saif, and Hyderie -- as they seek to keep tabs on the displaced and as they shelter others left homeless.


Thank you for partnering with us through your prayers for our friends in Pakistan as well as for those new friends we are making in Chicago!  No doubt they will have families in country who will be touched by this flooding, so be in prayer for them as well, and for the Friendship Center as we reach out to them.


For the least-reached in Chicago and Pakistan,  Doug and Margaret



Dates to Remember in Prayer and Action

August 22:  Stanfold Lutheran Church, five miles west of Rice Lake, holds its Music and Craft Festival from noon until 7 p.m.  They hope to reach out to LCMC brothers and sisters through this afternoon of music and fellowship.  Eight different musical groups will perform in the pavilion.  There will be food and crafts on display as well.  Details can be found in the attached news release.


August 26:  Choir practice!  Meet in the fellowship hall of St. Matthew’s at 7 p.m.  Bob LaMont will lead the choir.  We’ll rehearse one evening a month, and sing on the 2nd and 4th Sundays.  All are welcome!


August 29:  Grace Lutheran Church of Eau Claire holds a worship and centennial celebration at Owen Park. After worship at 10:30, a picnic meal will be served ($5 adults, $2 children).  Vintage cars will be on display, and fun activities are planned for children.


August 31:  Christ the Savior Lutheran Church in Fishers, Indiana will vote on extracting itself from the ELCA. This is the congregation where Faith Lutheran Mission Church member Marylin Howard’s son worships, so keep them in your prayers as they seek discernment.


October 3-6:  The 2010 LCMC Annual Gathering at Calvary Lutheran Church in Golden Valley.  The theme of this year’s gathering is Celebrate! 


Final Word

“I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all.  But whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess!”

                                                                                    Martin Luther