Story Magazine - Second Quarter, 2004

Augustana Lutheran Church Gives $10,000 Gift to New Fund

Augustana Lutheran Church in West St. Paul, Minn., is known for its understanding of stewardship and generous, giving spirit. So, when Senior Pastor Mark Aune, '86, heard of Luther Seminary's new "Fund for Financial Leadership in Christian Communities," the wheels started turning in his mind. "Wouldn't it be neat if Augustana was the first to give a gift to the fund?" he remembered thinking.

The congregation had just received a bequest from a member's life insurance policy. The bequest came from Ethel Rintala, an active worshiper who never married and had no children. "I thought it would be nice to give some of Ethel's stewardship to someone else besides Augustana," Aune said. "I wanted to give a little joy to Luther."

He received the go-ahead from the congregation's giving committee, and soon a check for $10,000 was making its way to the seminary.

Aune expressed appreciation for Luther Seminary's vision to train leaders who are able to guide their congregations to lives of abundance in Christ. "Stewardship is critical for parish pastors to understand," he said. "If they don't understand, they won't make it."