Category: Making Christ Known

Making Christ Known is published online six times per year. Congregations are encouraged to email or make copies for leaders, members, and visitors. Articles can be copied for congregation use in newsletters or other publications.

Spiritual and religious – Presiding Bishop Eaton

    Is “Lutheran spirituality” an oxymoron? When we consider Martin Luther and the early reformers, we think of great theologians, prolific writers and musicians. We are well aware of Luther’s earthy language and direct communication. But spirituality? Luther as mystic? Not so much. And yet, Luther was a deeply spiritual person who also cared …

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ELCA World Hunger Domestic Hunger Grant Recipient

The World Hunger Subcommittee is pleased to announce that Christian Care, a nonprofit organization in Rock Island, has received an ELCA World Hunger Domestic Hunger Grant.  They were awarded $5,000 for each of the next three years to support their on-site meal programs for families and increase their on-site vegetable garden production.  Christian Care provides …

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ELCA launches collaboration with Blessed Tomorrow

In line with its commitment to pursuing wholeness for creation, the ELCA has announced a collaboration with ecoAmerica and its Blessed Tomorrow program, which helps faith-based organizations elevate their leadership on the moral, religious and justice issues surrounding climate change. The collaboration underscores this church’s commitment to raising awareness of climate change and taking action to mitigate its …

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Thanks and Godspeed – Pr. Kurt Nordby Retires

Pr. Kurt Nordby, Assistant to the Bishop for Stewardship and Development for the past 10 years retired at the end of January 2019. Kurt served the last 10 years of almost 43 years of ministry on the staff of the Northern Illinois Synod. He considered it a “joy and blessing to work with exceptional colleagues …

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What is God up to? – Presiding Bishop Eaton

A new question. Amid all the talk of the church in decline, Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, in her February column for Living Lutheran, wants us to ask a new question. Instead of “What can we do?” we should ask, “What is God up to?” so we can open ourselves up to the life-giving promise of God’s future. Read her column in English at https://bit.ly/2GgCbkg and in Spanish at https://bit.ly/2BnwTjy.

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Racial Justice Training

On Tuesday, February 5, 2019, almost 40 people met at First Lutheran Church in DeKalb for Racial Justice Training. Excellent speakers Judith Roberts (Program Director, Racial Justice Ministries, ELCA) and Donna Matteis (president of the ELCA European Descent Lutheran Association for Racial Justice) led the day-long training. During this event, participants explored concepts and consequences around race in communities and congregations. …

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ELCA World Hunger: Rebecca’s Story

VIDEO: Rebecca is a mother of two and a leader at Cathedral in the Night, an outdoor Christian ministry in Northampton, Mass. The ministry provides a meal every Sunday to its community, which includes people experiencing homelessness and poverty. Gifts to ELCA World Hunger (ELCA.org/hunger) recently helped Cathedral in the Night launch a second location. …

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I’m a Lutheran: Momoh Freeman

VIDEO: Immanuel choir director, pianist, and organist. Keyboardist at another church primarily made up of Liberian immigrants. Group home caregiver. I pray for peace, tolerance and for my family and friends. My faith and gospel music were powerful sources of comfort, strength, and survival as a young boy growing up in Liberia during the civil war. I …

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2019 is a time of transition for “Seeds for the Parish”

“Seeds for the Parish” has been around for a long time! Its been a well-read, widely-used resource among congregations and synods – sort of like a community marketplace where one can wander through a few times a year and check out what’s new and available to help support and equip leaders, congregations, and ministries of the ELCA. The winter 2019 issue is the …

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Lunch and Learn was a success!

On Wednesday, January 9, the Rockford synod office welcomed congregational administrative assistants from across the synod and from the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin for lunch and learn. They gathered to talk with each other and to hear from Cathy Lundeen of our ELCA Archives. The room was packed and it was a great success!

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March/April 2017 Making Christ Known

Apostles’ Creed • Lord’s Prayer In this third issue of our Small Catechism series, we look at the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer. The Apostles’ Creed was not composed by the apostles but is a faithful confession of apostolic doctrine; it is a “daughter” of the creed used by early Christians in Rome. The …

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September/October Making Christ Known

The Small Catechism This is the first issue of a special series on Martin Luther’s Small Catechism in honor of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. The September/October 2016 issue of  Making Christ Known is now available online. Please send the link to your congregation members, leaders, and staff. Download and print for …

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March/April 2016 Making Christ Known

The March/April 2016 Making Christ Known is now available online. Please share it with your congregation members, leaders, staff, and visitors. This is the 7th and final issue in a series on the seven Faith Practices. This issue focuses on Learning/Study. You can find the other issues of the Faith Practices series at the links below: Service …

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Holy and Sacred Work

Pr. Janet Lepp, St. John’s, Mendota   Affirmation of Baptism The young people in their white robes stand in front of the congregation.  “You have made public profession of your faith,” the Pastor announces, and then asks them, “Do you intend to continue in the covenant God made with you in holy baptism?”  Then the five …

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The Faith Practice of Serving

Pr. Mark Oehlert, St. John’s, Sterling Serve. Serving. Tennis anyone?  Seconds at thanksgiving dinner?   Well not exactly, at least in this communication.   This message has to do with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and how serving is at the core of Jesus teaching.  Many biblical parables speak profoundly of Jesus call to serve …

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Called to Serve

Pr. Jeffrey Clements, assistant to Bishop Wollersheim This is what the Son of Man has done:  He came to serve, not to be served—and then to give away his life in exchange for many who are held hostage. Mark 10:45, The Message I was in my first call as a young pastor.  As we were …

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Hospitality Moves to Invitations

Pr. John Heins, Cross and Crown, Roscoe Hospitality is a multi-dimensional element of the faith practices we Christians use to develop the fullness of our lives. Jesus demonstrated warm, personal, and convention-breaking hospitality when he rebuked the disciples for trying to turn away children people brought to him. “People were bringing little children to him …

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Welcoming People

Jerry L. Johns, member, Bethlehem DeKalb Jamie came to worship at our church, and I was able to invite her to the fellowship hall for refreshments after the service. What ensued was an extremely open and candid visit. She was looking for a church home and verbalized her expectations. I also had an opportunity to …

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“All” Means “All”

Rev. Dennis Hill We are invited by Christ when he states in Matthew 11, “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest …

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Our Faith Practice of Invitation

Ms. Ruth Anderson, AiM, Trinity, Galesburg “I love this! I’ve always wanted to ring, and had no idea how much fun it would be.” These words from a new handbell ringer surprised me. A few weeks earlier I worked to fill an unexpected vacancy in our choir. After making a list of potential candidates, I …

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It Will Get Better

From the September/October 2015 Making Christ Known Rev. Dr. Loren L. Nielsen This past summer I had rotator cuff surgery on my shoulder. The surgery went well but recovery and rehab were another story. I was always hurting. I had a hard time sleeping. I couldn’t drive the car for the longest time. It seemed …

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