Ministry in Context

Here's an idea

At Bethany-Elim in Ivanhoe, MN, where Steve Rasmussen and Julie Anderson are the pastors and Kent Krumwiede is the intern, some wonderful veteran members of the congregation were "present" virtually for worship on the Sunday after Christmas. For a Lessons and Carols service on that day, elderly and shut-in members of the congregation were videotaped reading the lessons, and the videos were played at worship as part of the service.

When one of those members died a few weeks later, she had “just

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The undertaking

by Ingrid Arneson Rasmussen

“A good funeral gets the dead to where they are going, and the living to where they need to be.” –Thomas Lynch

During theology school, I took a preaching course on death and dying with Tom Long. Long assigned Thomas Lynch’s book entitled The Undertaking: Life Studies from the Dismal Trade. Lynch, a poet and a funeral director in Michigan, shares Long’s abiding interest in the way that the living treat the dead.

Unless your internship congregation

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Taking a longer look

I was in my bank, a supermarket branch, sitting down and doing some simple business. Next to me an elderly woman (even older than me) was conducting banking business. She was the very picture of the elderly lady: a tiny thing with carefully coiffed grey hair, precise make-up, neat clothing, wrinkled skin, a pleasant smile on her face. I could see her baking cookies, drinking tea, watching “Downton Abbey” with a cat on her lap, giving generous gifts to grandchildren and maybe even great

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Photo Album

Are blue Priuses the official vehicle of choice for ELCA Lutherans these days? Maybe they are in the state of Washington. These four lined up side by side at the ordination of Annette Andrews-Lux at Trinity Lutheran in Freeland on January 19. (Jim Lindus, Luther Seminary Board Chair, is the senior pastor at Trinity.) Word has it that three of these cars belong to ELCA pastors, and the fourth is driven by a person from the NW Washington Candidacy Committee. (photo by Julie Josund)

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Merry Christmas!

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Tony Fair

Tony Fair, who was in the midst of a concurrent internship at Messiah Lutheran Church in Minneapolis, died on Dec. 18, 2012, after a long series of health struggles. Tony was a delightful, happy, energetic man who, not long before his death, was working on his approval essays from the intensive care unit.

We join with the entire seminary community in sending sympathy and prayers to Tony’s sons Everett and Maddox and his sister Theresa. May God’s comfort be with those who mourn.

A time

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The unexpected turns

Life takes unexpected turns. We all know that, but it can still be unsettling when those turns involve us.

Many of you are aware of some of those unsettling turns here at Luther. Last week, following the earlier announcement of President Rick Bliese’s resignation, I accepted the invitation to serve as Luther’s interim president, beginning Jan. 1, 2013. I ask you to keep all of us, including Rick and Nina Bliese, in your prayers.

Many of you were also aware that I had made plans to retire

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May the library be with you

By Andy Keck

Ever get stumped by a question in Bible Study? Struggling to develop a sermon topic? Clueless about starting a new ministry in an area you don't know anything about? The Luther Seminary Library is here to help. No matter how distant you happen to be from campus, you can continue to use our growing electronic resources and services, make use of our expanded hours and delivery service, or plug into your local library.

Electronic resource and services include a growing number of databases

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Photo Album

Intern Lynne Ogren with Julie Josund at Island of Faith Lutheran Church in Wrangell, Alaska.

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Not always easy, but good

It happened again. And I love it!

I received a beautiful articulated, deeply reflective communication from one of our interns. This came as part of an ongoing conversation we’ve been having about the stressful situation they are in. This intern reflected on what had happened (neither of us would call it good), what the intern has learned, how God appears to be at work in the midst of it, and what they are doing in response. Wonderful!

One cannot be human, or do ministry, without encountering

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