E-lert - August 2013

Strong donor investment impacts emerging church leaders

Luther Seminary is committed to equipping evangelical public leaders who will serve communities all across God's world. We are overwhelmed with gratitude for the nearly 7,000 donors who came together in support of our mission during the 2013 fiscal year, which ended June 30.

New and loyal donors showed unwavering support for Luther's mission during a time of transition, as the number of annual donors grew over last year. Donors' generous gifts make a significant impact, covering over half of the annual budget when combining outright gifts and endowment income.

Gifts like these help Luther prepare emerging church leaders who have missional hearts, are dedicated to ministering to today's youth and families, and are equipped to share the gospel message through strong biblical preaching. Ongoing investments allow students to respond to their calls in innovative ways, carefully preparing to lead communities of faith with vision and imagination in today's complex world.

"It is with a joyful heart that I share a word of thanks for these generous gifts to Luther Seminary," said Master of Divinity student Lindsey Bulger. "Because of donor support, I have been able to more fully explore my calling to serve as a leader in both the church and the world. My calling is to serve the church of Jesus Christ with the same faithfulness and love that is shown to students like me through this support of Luther Seminary."

During the last academic year, 764 students brought their passion for ministry to their studies at Luther Seminary. Among them were:

  • 396 Master of Divinity students
  • 237 ecumenical students from 40 denominations
  • 92 students enrolled in the Master of Divinity Distributed Learning program, which allows students to take the majority of classes online
  • 71 international students from 28 countries
  • 24 students in the Master of Arts in Children, Youth and Family Ministry Distributed Learning program

Gifts to Luther Seminary also supported:

  • Sustaining Fund: Unrestricted gifts support our core mission of educating leaders for the church by attracting the best students and teachers, creating strong programming, keeping the cost of tuition down, and supporting the cost of operating the seminary.
  • Student scholarships: Several generous donors came together to encourage giving in support of students who are following God's call into ministry. Thanks to their commitment to Luther's students, $200,000 was matched for current scholarships in the 2013 fiscal year through the Seminarian Scholarship Challenge.
  • Resources: A daily devotion written entirely by Luther alumni, God Pause reaches nearly 13,000 people via email and more than 5,000 people through its Facebook page every day. In addition, church leaders from more than 200 countries and territories around the world are inspired by WorkingPreacher.org, which received 1.6 million visits in the past 12 months. Donor support allows Working Preacher to offer more than 1,600 commentaries, 650 articles, 400 podcasts and 250 videos--all for free.

This year donors went above and beyond in their support of the Sustaining Fund. These gifts allow the seminary to use the money where it is needed most. The seminary also received vital planned giving contributions, which will support our mission long into the future.

Every gift to Luther Seminary supports our mission. Learn how you can make a difference at www.luthersem.edu/gifts