Lutheran Social Services Mission Moment

 Off The Square Club Works with Neighbors to Foster Change Within Community

Fresh towels are something most of us take for granted. For members at Lutheran Social Services’ Off the Square Club in Madison, towels are a luxury. More than half the club members are homeless. With the addition of a shower thanks to ELCA congregations in the South Central Synod of Wisconsin, along with various corporations, foundations and generous individuals, club members have access to shower facilities.

This welcome addition brought with it a new challenge – providing fresh towels for clients. When Hampton Inn and Suites, of the Raymond Management Company, in downtown Madison learned of this challenge, they were determined to help LSS.

Hotel Manager Michael Luehrs and Assistant Manager Nicki Kelly came up with a plan to begin donating towels to Off the Square Club. Now two years later, Off the Square club receives three deliveries of towels from Hampton Inn and Suites Housekeeping Staff each week, with 25 towels in each delivery. Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan thanks that staff at Downtown Madison’s Hampton Inn and Suites for their commitment to meeting the needs of their neighbors.

Campaign for the ELCA and the Million Dollar Mission Jar Challenge Total Announced at Synod Assembly!

As you know, a year ago at our synod assembly, we announced the challenge for members of our congregations to raise $1/day for the ELCA.  $ 10,083.03 has been generously donated in support of the Campaign for the ELCA.  Thank you for your generosity for the ELCA mission and ministry!


$1 a day for the ELCA!

We invite you to prayerfully consider supporting Always Being Made New: The Campaign for the ELCA to continue and grow the work of the Church around the world. This year’s emphasis is Global Mission!

What can you do? How can your set this challenge in motion in your congregation?
Pick up a jar from the table at synod assembly and bring the jar back to your congregation. Introduce the Million Dollar Mission Jar challenge to your congregation (pastor, council, ministry teams, circles).

Look at the insert and notice that it is designed for individuals to personally choose which area(s) of the campaign they would like to support. This is where their hands will follow their heart. Individuals will be asked to send their payment directly to the synod, noting their congregation on the form. This simplifies the process for your staff.

At the end of the challenge, your congregation will receive a report of the total funds and how they were designated.

Visit the Synod website for downloadable resources, ideas for keeping the challenge going, and information on where you can purchase supplies. Watch the synod e-newsletter, What Matters, for the announcement of when these resources will be ready! (Mid-May)

Resources to help you launch the campaign in your congregation:
Mission Jar Challenge Flier
Mission Jar Challenge Labels – Black & White
Mission Jar Challenge Labels – Color
Instructions for inserts: Print these back to back & cut apart. Ther are three up on a page. They will easily insert into a mason jar. To order lids with coin slots, we recommend:


What can you do? How can you personally participate and support?

  • Create your own jar and decorate with the Million Dollar Mission Jar Challenge insert.

  • Place the jar in a space where it will be seen: a kitchen counter, dining room table, night stand, etc.

  • Be reminded each time you see the jar to pray for families and communities near and far and consider how just a dollar a day will change lives.  Fill the jar!

  • When you are ready, remove the insert and tell us where you would like to designate your offering.  You can divide it or give to one initiative…this is where your heart and your hands meet.

  • You’ll need to convert your coins to a check and send it to the synod office at the address on the front of the form by March 31, 2018 to be counted in this year’s challenge.