Love your neighbor as yourself

Servant to Servant                                   12-2-16
Church and school activities
Around the District        
At the outset of each fiscal year, LCEF establishes ministry targets for each LCEF District Vice President (DVPs) and their LCEF program.  These targets or goals are not all that easy to reach.  It requires dedication, focus and more than anything, a reliance on the power of the Holy Spirit at work in their district.

In addition to a thorough review of the performance against these ministry goals, LCEF considers the larger ministry impact that the DVPs offer to their districts as well as the congregations, schools and other ministries they serve. Fully invested in the ministries they serve, the DVPs provide expertise and passion - walking side by side and serving as a partner and resource for the sake of the Gospel in their communities.

This year The Rev. David Thiele, English District LCEF Vice President, was one of three DVPs recognized for outstanding efforts in promoting mission and ministry. 

Pictured with David are Max Phillips (left), LCEF Board of Directors Chairman, and Rich Robertson (right), LCEF President.
Serving the community
Every holiday season, Lutheran Church of the Shepherd King, West Bloomfield, MI, a suburb of Detroit, provides its congregation with a platform for caring and sharing with their most disadvantaged neighbors. It is part of their mission and represents a very important aspect of their ministry.
Shepherd King partners with the Farmington Schools Head Start Program to provide participants in this program with an opportunity to receive extra help to complement their holiday needs. They deliver Thanksgiving baskets that include many ingredients of a traditional American holiday dinner. The day of the event they also provide a warm meal and entertainment for the little ones.
This year the congregation received support from diverse local organizations including Goodfellows and Thrivent. This support came in the way of both financial donations and time and talent commitments as they partnered together to make sure the baskets were complete.

Moreover, in an effort to build a strong community, they partnered with at least 35 volunteers from the Farmington Schools, Noonday Exchange, and members and friends of the congregation, enabling them to serve 78 families with fellowship and the Good News!
Reaching out in the community
Redeemer Crisis Center (RCC), Cleveland, OH, is supported by the English District, local Lutheran churches and several other partners in an effort of human care to the area's needy. To read about the mission and ministry of RCC, click here.

Feeding body and spirit
Members of Ascension of Christ Lutheran Church, Beverly Hills, MI, cooked, served and enjoyed dinner with the seniors at the Oxford Towers in Berkley, MI. Five amazing teenagers took drink orders and served dinner and dessert. What a great team! A special thanks to Sharon Florio for sharing the photos.

Reaching outside the community
Each year St. John's Lutheran Church, Golden Lake, ON, Canada, supports the Samaritan's Purse outreach by filling shoe boxes with gifts destined for distribution among children in Third World countries at Christmas time. This year, thanks to the generosity of the members and friends of the congregation, a record-setting 40 shoe boxes were filled. 

Feeding the hungry
Hales Corners Lutheran School, Hales Corners, WI, was featured in a segment on their local news. Listen to the wonderful way this church and school worked together to serve 500 with a holiday meal as well as breakfast items.

Video link:
Thanksgiving offering
Students from Grace English School, Chicago, IL, brought Thanksgiving offerings to chapel services. The offerings were canned food items which were shared with families in their community.
Operation Christmas Child
Students from Concordia Little Lambs, Berwyn, IL, sent 50 shoe boxes to children across the world for Operation Christmas Child.  
Epic Church, Shelby Township, MI, gave thanks and praise to all of the people who prayed, donated food, and helped deliver the food to families through ServeLocal. What a blessing it is was to be able to bless 23 other families!
For the children
The congregation of Risen Christ Lutheran, Plymouth, MI, had the best response ever in collecting Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes. These gifts go to kids who need to know that they are loved, no matter who or where they are in the world.
In our churches
Welcome to the newest member of God's family at Hope, Hastings, MN. Susan Helen Koch was baptized on Sunday, Nov. 27. Through water and the Word, Jesus has entered the heart of this little one.



Thank you!
A special thank you to all who gave generously during our  #GivingTuesday   campaign! Just a reminder, you can make a donation online any time throughout the year. Thank you for supporting the ministries and missions of the  English District LCMS !

Divine calls
Call Received
The Rev. Joshua P. Bernau of Hope, Hastings, MN has received a call to serve St. John's, Norwood Young America, MN.  

Call Declined
The Rev. Justin R. Schmidt of Christ, Delavan, IL and St. Luke, San Jose, IL has declined the call to serve Trinity, Erie, PA.


Click here to read the Board Bulletins from the November 2016 Board of Directors meeting.

School Ministry offers free 'Schools Week' resources
Materials designed to help LCMS schools celebrate "National Lutheran Schools Week" January 22-28, 2017, are available as free downloads.

The theme for the observance is "Upon This Rock," based on Isaiah 26:4: "Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock."

Higher Things 2017 conference registration opens
Higher Things will join Lutherans around the world in 2017 commemorating the 500th anniversary of the Church's Reformation at its four youth conferences next summer.
The dates and locations for those conferences - with the theme of "Here I Stand" - are:

June 27-30, 2017 at Trinity University, San Antonio, TX

July 4-7, 2017 Mars Hill University, Mars Hill, NC

July 18-21, 2017 Montana State University, Bozeman, MT

July 25-28, 2017 Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, IN


Registration opened November 1, 2016. Download the conference registration packet and register online here.

Registration opens Feb. 1 for LWML convention in Albuquerque
The Lutheran Women's Missionary League is gearing up to celebrate its 75 th anniversary during its 37 th Biennial Convention, June 22-25, 2017, in Albuquerque, NM.

Although registration opens February 1, 2017, hotel reservations may be made beginning January 2, 2017 for the special convention to be held in a city known for its lofty elevation, breathtaking mountain views and color-splashed, hot-air balloons.

Under the theme "Jesus Christ Above All," from Philippians 2:9, convention attendees will be "encouraged through worship and Bible study, equipped to share His message of salvation and engaged in celebrating God's faithfulness while serving the Lord with gladness."

Read more 
Reformation 500
Our first Reformation profile has been posted to the Reformation 500 website  featuring Physicians Matthaeus Ratzeberger from the time of the Reformation and our very own Diana Honebrink, English District LWML Vice President of Gospel outreach. Your Reformation 500 committee is busy at work on several additional profiles and we look forward to making these available over the next several months.  If you have any laypeople in your congregations who you might like to see profiled, please email Roni Grad . We are right now looking for a business person, a pharmacist and an elected official in secular government.  Thank you in advance!
News from international workers
Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
Thank you so much for your continued prayers and support towards our service in the Dominican Republic and in Latin America.
Please click here to read our newsletter.
James & Christel Neuendorf

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To read our November newsletter, click here.
Pastors and secretaries, please print out a few copies of the newsletter for your congregation display board.

Your fellow workers in Christ,
Cheryl & Jonathan Naumann

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For what are we thankful?  Too many things to count: 
  • Good health
  • So many friends and partners
  • Incredible memories with many of you
But over all that, we're thankful to be forgiven, beloved children of our Lord Jesus through the waters of Holy Baptism.  

Thank you for your continued interest, friendship, and love. God grant all of you a safe, healthy, and joyful holiday.

Click here to read our latest newsletter. 

Yours in Jesus' Name,
The Ferry Family
(Charles, Cheryl, Caleb, Caitlin, Carissa, Cassandra, and Chloe)
Fair labor standards act rule blocked by federal judge
On November 22, 2016, a federal judge granted a nationwide injunction blocking "The Final Rule," which was intended to extend overtime provisions to more than 4 million workers in the United States effective December 1, 2016. The Final Rule included an increase in the minimum salary required for many workers to be classified as exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), from $23,660 annually to $47,476 annually. Many LCMS congregations and schools have been working diligently to prepare for the changes. 
Most ordained and commissioned workers of The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod are not subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act due to the Ministerial Exception and other protections under the First Amendment. Bona-fide teachers are typically not subject to the minimum salary provisions, so the Final Rule was not going to affect most teachers. The injunction provides relief to those employers who had other employees that didn't meet the new minimum salary threshold but did meet the other qualifications of one of the defined exemptions.
Since the Final Rule was issued in May, however, many congregations have identified that existing employees may have already been improperly classified as exempt, such as those that didn't meet the duties requirements under one of the established exemptions. In addition, many congregations have recognized that other aspects of current FLSA regulations were not being followed, such as not carrying over comp time past a defined 168-hour (7-day) period, accurately tracking hours for non-exempt workers, etc. Congregations are encouraged to continue in their diligence in becoming compliant in these areas under existing law as we wait for further actions by the court and the Department of Labor.

Previous issues of the eNewlsetter, Servant to Servant, are available here. You are encouraged to share the information from Servant to Servant with members of your congregation.

All are invited to subscribe to this weekly publication. Forward the newsletter to members of your church using the "Spread the Word" link at the bottom left of this newsletter. They can subscribe by clicking on the link at the bottom right titled, "Sign up for our emails." Thanks for spreading the word!

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