Students at commencement

Ministry in Context

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

Photo Album

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

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

Ready for some bread-breaking?

Want to bake some fine communion bread for the holidays? Or show other folks in the congregation how to do it? Or, to tell the truth…just some good eating bread for yourself or your family or your guests?

Using the official “Luther Seminary Recipe,” one of our fine internship supervisors, Pastor Ron Glusenkamp of Bethany Lutheran, Cherry Hills, Colorado, shows you how in this video:

http://vimeo.com/48145113

Thanks for sharing this, Ron!

To be content

Call me an old softie and a slob. I love Christmas. I love the whole month of December.

I love the scripture and hymns of Advent. I love the “stir up” prayers. (God knows, we need to get stirred up.) I love the candles. I love the concerts. The late service on Christmas Eve has always been one of my two favorite worship services of the whole year. (You didn’t ask, but the answer is the sunrise service on Easter Day.) I love the Sundays after Christmas, with relatively small congregations

Photo Album

Photos from the Nov. 6 cluster meeting of interns in the Pacific Northwest.

 

The best laid plans and all that

While I have spent most of my life in and around cities, I grew up in southeastern Iowa, never far from farmland, and one of my first jobs involved driving various trucks around Iowa and Illinois, so there is something about farm fields embedded firmly in my soul. I find it relaxing and renewing to drive across the southern Minnesota countryside.

So I was cheerful and anxious in a positive way the other day when I looked forward to driving to Shalom Hill Farm outside Windom to meet with the Southwestern

Photo Album

Intern Neal Cannon, Intern Kayla Monson, Pastor Joel Quie, Pastor Bob Linstrand, and intern LisaMarie Doerrmann at the West Metro Cluster Meeting.

 

Interns Kristine Isder, Gwen Powell, Amy Swenson and Amanda Ullrich at the Southwestern Minnesota-South Dakota Cluster.

 

Interns Jeremy Ullrich, William Johnson, Josh Toufar and Michael Buller enjoy a little cribbage during a lunch break at the Southwestern Minnesota-South Dakota Cluster.

 

Pastor Rick Hoyme, Intern Aaron

A few questions

I imagine you are busy about now. October calendars have a way of filling up fast for congregational servant leaders. And for many of you interns, if you began your internship in August or September, you may be just entering that phase where "I don’t know, I just got here" doesn't work anymore.

Not only that, but the people who were absolutely impressed that you remembered their names in those first few weeks (we all remember a few), are now surprised and disappointed that you don't remember

Sally's new call

Our colleague Sally Messner left her position in Contextual Learning at the end of September. This is bittersweet news. The "bitter" part is that we will dearly miss a delightful and skilled colleague. The "sweet" part is that she plans to spend more time at home with her 4-month old daughter, Annalies, and expand her freelance work as a musician and editor. We wish Sally, Josh and Annalies all the best and are grateful for her time with us.

Part of Sally's work with Contextual Learning has been