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.

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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Holiday Greetings from our companions in India and Tanzania

India We received the following greeting from Bishop Raja Socrates G.: Greetings to you from the Arcot Lutheran Church. “LOOK, THE VIRGIN SHALL CONCEIVE AND BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL NAME HIM EMMANUEL,” WHICH MEANS, “GOD IS WITH US,” .. MATHEW 1:23 WISH YOU HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2019. Tanzania We …

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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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September / October 2017 Making Christ Known

The Small Catechism – Confession and Blessings In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, Making Christ Known has featured a series focusing on Luther’s Small Catechism. We conclude this year-long series with Confession and Blessings. A Kinder and Gentler Confession NIS Bishop Jeffrey Clements I am sometimes amused by what has stuck with …

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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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January/February 2017 Making Christ Known

The Ten Commandments This issue is the 2nd in a special series on Martin Luther’s Small Catechism   Memorizing the Catechism NIS Bishop Jeffrey Clements Friends in Christ, One of the requirements of my Lutheran Confessions class in seminary was to memorize Luther’s Small Catechism. I am not particularly good at memorization. It takes a …

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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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Service is at the heart of what we do as a church

The Rev. Dr. Denver Bitner, part-time assistant to the bishop and LSSI President Emeritus Teacher, What is the greatest commandment in the law? And He said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.  This is the great and first …

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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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Living the Faith Practices – Encouragement

From the September/October 2015 Making Christ Known Pastor Troy C. Hedrick While sitting in my office at the Chicago inner-city congregation I was serving, I heard the front door open and someone run in. As I walked into the narthex to see who it was, the door opened again and 4 or 5 older African …

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Starting Strong, Ending Well

From the September/October 2015 Making Christ Known Bishop Gary Wollersheim I think there are a lot of important times in our working lives, but none more important than our beginnings and our endings. For a pastor, starting strong means listening, learning, and developing relationships based on trust and mutual respect. Sometimes pastors try to make …

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Making Christ Known May/June 2015

This issue, focusing on Worship, is the third in a series on the seven Faith Practices. The worship of God is both personal and corporate. As we grow in our experience of worshiping God together with the community of faith, our desire strengthens to follow Christ in daily life. As we gather to worship, we hear the Word and receive the Sacrament, respond by singing, praying and giving our offering and are sent by the Spirit to serve God and our neighbor in the world.

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Worship Matters

The Rev. H. Jeffrey A. Clements (from the May-June 2015 issue of Making Christ Known) My son was new to his position as associate director of Flathead Lutheran Bible Camp. He and his dog had moved to Montana that summer with what he could stuff into his small car. My daughter-in-law was still working in …

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Something Old, Something New

The Rev. Twila Schock (from the May-June 2015 issue of Making Christ Known) “Wow!  I love worshiping here.  I was afraid, hearing you were Lutheran, you would make us bow, cross ourselves, and say things at church that we didn’t feel.  Instead, we sing, we read the Bible, and we pray.” * * * “Thank …

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Worship Is

The Rev. Robert A. Franek (from the May-June 2015 issue of Making Christ Known) Worship is from the beginning the Church’s primary faith practice. A people gathered by the Holy Spirit around word and sacrament on the Lord’s Day giving thanks and praise for resurrection of Jesus Christ is the church’s primary activity. Everything in …

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Worship Is the Heart of All We Do

Given competition, is it ‘hub of our week, space of our regrouping’? The Rev. Elizabeth Eaton, ELCA Presiding Bishop (from the May-June 2015 issue of Making Christ Known) There is a Seattle-based caffeinated beverage company that goes to great lengths to provide excellent customer service. Its campaign is to make itself everyone’s “Third Place.” “First …

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March/April 2015

The March/April 2015 Making Christ Known is now available online. Please share it with your congregation members, leaders, staff, and visitors. This is the 2nd issue in a series on the seven Faith Practices. This issue focuses on Giving/Generosity. Giving is a mark of discipleship and a part of daily life. Giving is not always easy. Our human need for …

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January/February 2015

The January/February 2015 Making Christ Known is now available online. Please share it with your congregation members, leaders, staff, and visitors. This is the 1st issue in a series on the seven Faith Practices. This issue focuses on Prayer . Prayer is both listening and speaking. Through prayer God’s will is discerned and greater clarity is gained for our journey. Prayer can …

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