Ministry in Context

Introducing Chris Scharen, the new Director of Contextual Learning

I'd like to introduce myself as the new Director of Contextual Learning. Ironically, God must have had me in mind for this call—my office is already in the Contextual Learning suite in the 3rd floor tower of Northwestern Hall. I've been there since 2008 when I began at Luther as Assistant Professor of Worship. I'll continue to teach worship part-time, but will shift the bulk of my time to the Contextual Learning enterprise. I'm excited to join a superb and dedicated staff hard at work in the

Farewell to Kate

After ten years of faithful service, Kate Sterner will be leaving the staff of Luther Seminary by mid-May.  Kate has been a stalwart partner with us in the Contextual Learning department, our mainstay in dealing with applications and evaluations and all of those forms completed on-line, taking the jumbled mess passed on to her by others and converting it into the more polished “Ministry in Context” that you see, and shepherding diaconal students through their seminary program.

We

Another Tax Tip

In response to a student question as to whether parsonage value was taxable if provided by the church, tax accountant Mark Friesen has provided this information:

Like other fringe benefits, free or discounted church-provided lodging is usually subject to income and other taxes. To determine the fair market value of the housing provided to an intern, the church may check local newspaper listings for comparable rental properties or ask a local realtor for an estimate of the property’s rental

My Guilty Pleasure

As I write this I prepare to say good-bye to whatever vestige of mature, cultured, intellectual status I might have previously claimed, revealing myself to be a total slob. As if you didn’t already know.

Three tides converged at about the time I retired from full-time parish ministry:

  1. My wife and I took ballroom dancing lessons.
  2. I had more free time in the evening.
  3. "Dancing With The Stars” became a TV hit.

What can I tell you? I confess to being a “Dancing With The Stars”

Spring cluster meetings

After Easter, cluster meetings begin! Here's the schedule:

Washington Cluster: April 9-10, at Rainbow Lodge, North Bend, Wash. (Julie Josund)

Twin Cities First Year Concurrents: April 10, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Luther Seminary, Northwestern Hall Room 230. (Steve McKinley)

Northern Minnesota-North Dakota Cluster: April 16, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., at Hope Lutheran Church, South Campus, Fargo, N.D. (Steve McKinley)

Twin Cities West Cluster: April 18, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., at Trinity Congregation/Augsburg College, Minneapolis,