Mission Moment: Goodbye Cairo, Hello Passages

Goodbye Cairo, Hello Passages – Message from Rev. Kirsten Fryer

 

With great joy, I write with two updates.

First, this will be my last Cairo newsletter, as I am now settling into life in St. Paul, MN. I have been called to serve as pastor of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in the Midway. I started on September 15 and am getting settled into new routines, doing lots of listening, and have plenty to learn about St. Paul, our local neighborhood (Midway), and life back in America.
Joanna started preschool and is loving it. She is very excited to see “golden leaves” and experience her first real autumn. We’ll see how she feels when the snow starts to fly. It’s not in the forecast yet! She is also very excited about Sunday school at Bethlehem and looks forward to Sunday each week because “there will be lots of Sundays in St. Paul.” Justin is enjoying time to be a stay-at-home-dad as he figures out what is next for him.

Located a block west of Snelling and University (the busiest intersection in St. Paul), Bethlehem is rooted in the neighborhood and discerning what it means to be church in a changing neighborhood. Construction is scheduled to start in a few weeks on a new six-story residential building on the other side of our alley, and the Minnesota United soccer (I still say football after six years in Cairo!) stadium is across the street.

Like in Cairo, we share the space with others, including Open Hands Midway, a non-profit housed in the building that feeds the hungry through meals, a food pantry, and providing a welcome space. We also share space with House of Mercy, another ELCA congregation, who worship on Sunday evenings. I am excited to see what the Holy Spirit has in store for us and grateful for the opportunity to share some of the things I learned in Cairo with an urban American congregation.

We worship at 9:30 on Sundays. Open Hands serves lunch every Monday from noon until 2:00 pm. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, please stop by!

The second update is that Pastor Christie Manisto, and her husband, Steve Saari, are settling into life in Cairo. Their gifts are a perfect match for St. Andrew’s and I am so glad that they are there, accompanying our beloved siblings in Cairo. Please consider supporting them, as you have supported me–in prayer, financial support, and encouragement!

If you would like to continue to receive updates from Cairo, please email Christie.manisto@elca.org and/or Steven.saari@elca.org to be added to their newsletter list.

Click here for their most recent Passages newsletter. http://bit.ly/PassagesfromCairo

If you would like to receive the StARS newsletter, please email news@stars-egypt.org to be added to the list.
Thank you again for all of the ways you have supported and encouraged me over these six years. I will treasure our time in Cairo always, and look forward to figuring out how the Spirit is calling in years to come.

Breaking Down Walls – ELCA Global Mission

Greetings, dear friends in Christ!

On Nov. 9, 2019, the world will commemorate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. As we look back to remember this important moment in human history, we are reminded that there is much work to be done to tear down the walls that divide us today.

Galatians 3:28 reminds us that in Christ all that separates and divides us no longer holds sway over us. There is no longer Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female — all are made one in Christ Jesus. In him the walls we have built are brought down so that we might see each other as siblings, each made in the image of God.

My friends, I encourage you, your congregations and your communities to join together in proclaiming this truth — that we are one human family. Just as tens of thousands of people gathered in nonviolent protest in the streets of Leipzig, Germany, in the “Peaceful Revolution” of 1989, so, too, are we called in this moment to advocate for an end to division and oppression in our own communities and throughout the world. This is a significant moment in our denominational history, as the ELCA recently declared itself a sanctuary church body at the 2019 Churchwide Assembly. This is a moment for breaking down walls.

Here you will find an array of resources that we hope will assist your community of faith in remembering those who have helped bring down walls in the past and those seeking just and peaceful ways to bring down the walls in our midst today. Included as part of these resources is a special liturgy that I hope you’ll use in your own candlelight vigil or service of remembrance this fall. The liturgy is patterned after the weekly prayer services that were held at St. Nicholas Church in Leipzig, Germany, during the Cold War, services that many believe helped topple the Berlin Wall and end the war itself.

DOWNLOAD BREAKING DOWN THE WALLS TOOLKIT HERE:  https://elca.org/Resources/Global-Mission

As we gather to celebrate this Peaceful Revolution — and its Lutheran roots — let us pray for and advocate on behalf of those divided and oppressed by other walls. Let us hold in prayer the people of Palestine, those on the U.S.-Mexico border, and all places where we build barriers, in our communities and in our hearts.

Come, Holy Spirit, lead us to unity and peace.

Pax,

The Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla
Executive Director for Global Mission
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

4th Annual Faith in Numbers, hosted by Wegner CPAs

The 4th Annual Faith in Numbers, hosted by Wegner CPAs, is two weeks away and we want to make sure you are there!

This day is filled with relevant breakout sessions including

  • What Policies Do I need In My Congregation?
  • Donor-Advised Funds: An Introduction and Key Strategies;
  • Key Performance Indicators: Track What is Important to You;
  • Does Culture Matter? Roundtable; Funding & Facilitating Construction with a Frugal Mindset;
  • Seven Ways to Fail Your Donors;
  • High Functioning Church Boards – How to be the best!

All of these sessions are filled with tips that you can take straight back to your organization and implement. The impact of this day is made not only with the presentations but through all of the connections created between the attendees of this conference. Collaborate with other churches, listen to other organization’s pain points, share your success stories, and make this conference our best one yet!

Please click HERE to see the full agenda. and register for the event.

One of our very own pastors is on the panel of the 12:45 breakout session, Rev. Jim Hearne, Barneveld Lutheran Church!

Webinar: Engaging Service Members, Veterans, and their Families Through Faith-Based Partnerships

Date: November 14, 2019
Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. ET

To register:  https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_2ooM86pgQXmuy7KQ9lISAg

Faith-based organizations often serve as a trusted source of help and connection for many Service Members, Veterans, and Military Families (SMVF). An increasing number of faith-based organizations and leaders not only assist with the spiritual needs of SMVF but also provide support with many areas related to readjustment and strengthening resiliency, wellness, and recovery. They are often referred to as “force multipliers” due to their help and support to so many SMVF on the path to positive behavioral health and well-being.

This webinar will provide information that will help participants to engage, educate, inform, and partner with faith-based leaders, non-profit organizations, and communities in support of and responding to the behavioral health needs of SMVF.

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the spiritual and emotional needs of SMVF and better understand the role that faith-based communities can play in SMVF community integration and transition
  • Facilitate information dissemination for expanding and growing partnerships between communities and faith-based organizations
  • Provide examples and lessons learned for convening faith-based learning events, bringing faith-based, community, and SMVF partners together to help prevent SMVF suicides and address other mental health needs
  • Share relevant resources and tools to faith-based and community organizations in order to support SMVF and their caregivers
  • Identify training events and resources as well as explore opportunities for strengthening partnerships and coordination

If you have any questions about your registration, please contact Phil Paty at (518) 439-7415, ext. 5272, or by email at ppaty@prainc.com.

Mission Moment: LOPPW & WELCA Gather Around the Safe Harbor Human Trafficking Bill

Women of the ELCA & Lutheran Office for Public Policy Gather As Beloved Community
Around the Safe Harbor Hu
man Trafficking Bill
By Amelia Gonzales, LOPPW Intern

The Women of the ELCA and Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin joined together to hold a rally on youth are impacted by sex trafficking on September 24.  The day began at Messiah Lutheran Church in Madison.  We then went to the capitol, equipped with information and faith-based responses to advocate for the Safe Harbor bill.  AB 41/AB 49 would move Wisconsin ahead in directing trafficked youth to receiving human services rather than criminalizing them.

We heard from Morgan Meadows, M. Ed., Survivor of sex trafficking and consultant in leadership and survivor advocacy, Door County; Bishop Jim Arends, La Crosse Area Synod; Jen DeLeon, National WELCA Director for Justice; Dana World Patterson and Jay Reinke, Milwaukee Joint Task Force on Human Trafficking; and Representative Jill Billings. District 95.

The Safe Harbor Rally was a chance to bring together people to support a very important piece of legislation that is currently making its way through the system. For someone who has been an advocate for human trafficking for three years now, the rally was a truly an amazing experience to be a part of.  Not only was it great to hear the amazing speakers from the Milwaukee Human Trafficking Task Force and a survivor of human trafficking, Morgan Meadows, but also to have the chance to speak to legislators about why the Safe Harbor Bill is needed in the state of Wisconsin. The day also gave me joy to see people come to the rally who perhaps weren’t familiar with the bill but were willing to learn more about it and to understand why it was needed.

The rally was also taught us why certain legislators weren’t in support of the Safe Harbor Bill and how to be that person to perhaps further educate legislators

Amelia Gonzales joined the Lutheran Office for Public Policy as a graduate student in social work at UW-Madison in September.  She comes to us via the university’s 4W-STREETS (Social Transformation to End the Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking for Sex) program. Amelia is a recent graduate in social work and sociology from UW Oshkosh.

Thank you for your mission support that helps ministries like this happen!

The Forgotten Luther III: Reclaiming a Vision of Global Community Live Streaming Event!

The third Symposium in the Forgotten Luther series, with the help of five prominent church leaders and Luther scholars, invites congregations to develop a broader understanding of the global dimension of Christ’s mission in the world. Against the growing disparity in wealth and the rising tide of economic and political refugees throughout the world, the Symposium will reflect on Luther’s oft-forgotten social and economic reforms that flow from his central doctrine of justification by grace through faith.

Held on October 25 and 26, 2019 at St. Luke Lutheran Church in Silver Spring, MD, this symposium will feature presentations by: Rev. Dr. Karen Bloomquist, former Director of Department for Theology and Studies, Lutheran World Federation;  Rev. Dr. Guillermo Hansen, Professor of Global Christianity, Societies and Cultures and Martin Luther King Chair for Justice and Christian Community at Luther Theological Seminary;  Dr. Carter Lindberg, Emeritus Professor of Religion, Boston University;  Rev. Dr. Ishmael Noko, former General Secretary of the Lutheran World Federation; and Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb, President of Dar-al-Kalima University College of Arts and Culture in Bethlehem.

Live-Streaming!   Importantly, for your convenience, this symposium will have a LIVE-STREAMING capacity to make it immediately available, so you will not have to wait for the publication of the congregational study book that will include these presentations.  You may find out more about this live-streaming option by writing to ForgottenLuther@saintluke.us and/or contacting Deacon Kyle Warfield at kwarfield@saintluke.us.

This symposium might be of particular interest to pastors/laity who are interested in the challenges of Global engagement in these days.  A number of synod committees have considered gathering to experience and discuss presentations together.  As before, a congregational study book that includes these presentations will be published and available to the church within a year and could be used to enhance dialogue about the vision of global mission within your synod.

As in the previous two Forgotten Luther symposiums that were developed in partnership with program units of the ELCA, The Forgotten Luther III enjoys the support and participation of Rev. Rafael Malpica-Padilla, Executive Director of Global Mission, ELCA.

You may find more information on this symposium at WWW.FLIII.US . Please click on “read more” for a brief overview and history of The Forgotten Luther Project.

Spanish Immersion Program

The Caribbean Synod – ELCA will be Sponsoring a Spanish Immersion Program

Date: January 24 to February 1, 2020
Registration fee: $600
Instructor: Dr. Gina Mussulman
Supplies required: Bilingual bible and notebook
Site for lodging and food (Breakfast and lunch): Sinodo del Caribe Camp.
Site for classes: San Marcos Evangelical Lutheran Church, Guanabo
Classes daily from 6pm to 9pm.

To learn more about this exciting opportunity, contact DEM, Rev. Walter Bareis at (608) 270-0201 or walterb@scsw-elca.org. In order to participate please contact the Synod office (608)270-0201 or robynz@scsw-elca.org.

Lutheran Men in Mission Bold Gathering

November 9, 2019 11:00-2:00 Central
*- In-Person & Live Streamed Join in from anywhere!

This Bold Gathering’s theme is “Sons of Abraham: How God uses us to be bold, daring men of faith, like Abraham.” It is based on Galatians 3:6-9. This event is being hosted by Zion Lutheran Church, San Antonio, TX, partnership with Lutheran Men in Mission. It will be live-streamed from 11a-2p, with a 25-minute break, to individuals and groups of men across the country who have registered.

Plan now to attend, host a group, or watch it from wherever you are. Go to www.boldgathering.com for updates and registration info. For more information about Lutheran Men in Mission resources and events, go to www.lutheranmeninmission.org

Mission Moment: SCSW Women’s Organization

The Women of the ELCA held their 14th Biennial Convention last Saturday. The theme was “Bold Women – Answering the Call”. The keynote speaker, Reverend Angela Khabeb from Holy Trinity in Minneapolis was outstanding. There were also excellent workshops and worship.

At the business meeting, a new women’s synod board and Voting Members to the 2020 Triennial Convention were elected. The newly elected board includes Janna Smith (President), Sandy Seffrood (Vice President), Lynn Mehringer (Secretary), Bonnie Gilbertson (Treasurer), Linda Freitag, Eleanor Siebert, Lawanna Schieldt, Sheryl Phillipson, Diane Luginbuhl, Kathy Hultine, and Eugenie Hildebrandt from across the synod.

Voting Members elected to the 2020 Triennial Convention are Janna Smith, President, Barbara Penington and Kathy Hultine (first time voting members), and Polly Carter and Donna Peterson. The Alternate Voting members are Marlys Hittesdorf, Lawanna Schieldt, and Jane Harrison.

ELEVENTH TRIENNIAL GATHERING SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE – APPLY NOW! DUE OCTOBER 1, 2019
July 16 – 19, 2020, Phoenix, Arizona

The South-Central Wisconsin Synodical Women’s Organization provides 4 scholarships in the form of the Gathering registration fee. Here is a link to the scholarship application form. October 1, 2019 is the deadline for emailing or postmarking a completed application form or requesting a paper copy of the form by email or calling Helen Sheahan at 608-692-7553. Email address is sheahan1@sbcglobal.net or mailing address is 1106 Valley Stream Drive, Madison, WI 53711. Recipients will be notified by October 31, 2019.

Triennial Gatherings are always uplifting and inspiring. Yes, Phoenix will be hot in July but the buildings are all air-conditioned. So start thinking now about attending. Registration opens September 30. Early-bird registration through January 6, 2020, is $325. After that, registration is $375. One day registrations are $200. We can’t wait to see you!

Submitted by Helen Sheahan, Past President