"Caught in grace, created for service, called into community"
In This Issue

Sunday Mornings... 

Worship Services   8:00am, 9:00am, and 10:30 am


Learning Circles 

(Pre - 6th)

9:00 am 

Contact Us


Rev. Laura Ziehl 
Senior Pastor 
Ext 2

Pastor Sam Nelson
Associate Pastor
Constance Mithelman
Youth Director
Ext 12
Judy Foland
Office Administrator
Ext 1
Chris Matthews
Director of Children's Ministry
Ext 15
Quick Links

October 2018

News and Events

 From Your Church Council

Dear Members of Bethlehem Lutheran Church,
On behalf of your council, I'd like to begin by saying thank you. With each passing year, our gifts continue to support the longstanding mission of our Church. Bethlehem is deeply grateful for your financial contribution that supports our leadership, ministries and community - all in the name of Jesus Christ. We are changing lives and are being transformed by the love of God at the same time.
Last Sunday, I presented our recent accomplishments and included the list below so we can all take a moment to celebrate our success.
  • Hired Associate Pastor
  • Hired Youth Minister
  • Hired Children's Ministry Director
  • Completed the preschool refurbishment
  • Paid down the sanctuary remodel loan
  • Maintained and upgraded our facilities
  • Became an All Inclusive Church
  • Increased our benevolence by 2% with our financial aid to a Texas congregation
As we know, Stewardship is about more than money. Our time, talents, and treasures are equally important as we share our faith with others. Hands of Peace, Ramadan dinner, becoming an all-inclusive congregation, and our new welcome ministry are just a few of the outreach initiatives that demonstrate that commitment to our community. Still, money plays an important role in fulfilling our promise. For me, it's an important personal decision I make each year and consider this pledge a direct expression of my faith and my love for Christ. I feel gratitude knowing it funds a robust pastoral care program, discipleship opportunities, and ministry work, which together touch the lives of thousands of underserved individuals and families. With our offering, we provide support both inside and outside the walls of our church.                                  
Our theme for this year's campaign is entitled, "Defined by Generosity". Over the next few weeks, in addition to the adult education classes, our Pastors, congregants and invited guests will help us explore our theme.
Let us renew our promise to Bethlehem Lutheran's Mission and Vision Statements while also considering God's mission in the world outside of our congregation, and individually reflect on our level of giving for 2019. I want to thank you in advance, for without your support our church ministries could not happen.
Some of you are already giving 10% of your net income - the biblical tithe. If you are not tithing, I'd like to invite you to take a step in that direction. Perhaps consider a 1% increase to your current giving. If you regularly worship at Bethlehem -- and derive value from its services and the relationships surrounding its community -- I want to encourage you to support our ministry at a level you're comfortable with. If it causes you any financial burden to give even a few dollars per month, then our appeal for support is not directed at you. For everyone else, please know that the percentage of you who are donating in a recurring way are making it possible to keep our community thriving. And if 2019 is to be another successful year of financial stewardship and we see Bethlehem grow in interesting new ways, it will be because of our regular contributions -- even in small amounts.
At the bottom of this letter, I have included a Giving Guide that may help you with your planning. I have also enclosed a personal survey entitled, "Stewardship Life & Ministry Values" (you will receive this by mail). Please take a moment to answer the questions for yourself and see what you might learn about your personal stewardship values.
Included in this mailing is a pledge card which we ask that you complete and return by Commitment Sunday, October 14, 2018.   If you already contribute through our online system, we would still request you return an updated pledge card. If you do not contribute online, we encourage you to make this transition to automatic giving which greatly improves Bethlehem's financial planning.
The practice of generosity is a faith discipline. Growing in generosity is the mark of a deepening faith and journey with Christ. I joined Bethlehem because I believe that its members are committed to being genuine Disciples of Christ. I want to be involved with something that really matters in this community and Bethlehem is my chosen place of worship.
Thank You again for your Stewardship and for your contribution to the life-giving work of Bethlehem Lutheran Church.
In Peace,  
Dick DuBois

 Monthly Giving Guide

 Children's Ministry

Upcoming Events and News
Children's Christmas Program: Mark your calendars, this year's program will be on Dec. 16 @ 9 AM.
Learning Circles: Learning Circles is our Sunday school program during our 9 AM service.
Children attend the church service and are excused for Sunday School after the children's sermon. Children are led to the following locations for class:
Nursery: Toddlers (1,2 and 3-year-old) Located in Early Childhood Education Center's Pooh Bear room. Drop off available at 8:50 a.m. for 9:00 service OR children attend church service and are excused for Sunday School after Pastor's children sermon. Parents please accompany children to nursery.
Preschool - Kindergarten: Located in Early Childhood Education Center's Polar Bear room at 9:15. Children attend church service and are excused for Sunday School after the children's sermon.
1st - 2nd Grade: Located in Early Childhood Education Center's Panda Bear room at 9:15. Children attend church service and are excused for Sunday School after the children's sermon.
3rd - 4th Grade: Located in the Multi-Use Building at 9:15. Children attend church service and are excused for Sunday School after the children's sermon.
5th - 6th Grade: Located in the Family Center Kitchen at 9:15. Children attend church service and are excused for Sunday School after the children's sermon
Learning Circles Volunteers: We could still use a few more teachers! If you would like to volunteer, please contact Chris Matthews at  childrensministry@blcenc.org.
Childrens Choir: 10:00 a.m. -Family Center. Contact Mona Goetsch at
Childrens Chimers: 10:30 a.m. - Family Center Kitchen. Contact Mark Weed at
Chris Matthews
Director of Children's Ministries
Bethlehem Lutheran Church

 2nd Annual Oktoberfest

"Guten Tag Bethlehem!"

Oktoberfest is fast approaching.  Tickets are now on sale - $25pp/$40 per couple.
We are also looking for volunteer help with set-up, take-down, bakers, kitchen help, grillers, games & ticket sales. You can sign-up after church on Sundays leading up to the event.
Hope to see you there!

 Bethlehem Women of the ELCA

Quilts on the Pews-  September 30th and October 7th     

Scraps and Prayers, the Bethlehem quilting group, has quilts on the pews in the sanctuary. This year we will offer baby quilts and other specialty quilts as well as a donation of the quilts made and designed by Mary Ellen Hopkins** to the congregation in exchange for a donation, which will be used to help us buy materials needed to make all the quilts during the year. If you would like one of the baby quilts, specialty quilts or Mary Ellen Hopkins quilts, please see Kim Oswald or any of the other Scraps and Prayers members on the 30th or 7th. You may take your quilt home with you on those dates. Thank you for supporting this vital ministry!
The majority of the quilts from Scraps and Prayers are made for Lutheran World Relief (LWR).  New this year is that many of the LWR were tied during Bethlehem Serves - look for a quilt that you might have helped tie in August.  Prior to October 2016 we offered these quilts to the congregation in exchange for a donation to the Lutheran World Relief shipping fund.  In 2016 LWR requested that we send them the quilts instead of money.  We started something new in 2016 and we are continuing it again this year.  The LWR quilts will be displayed on the pews for all to see but will not be offered to the congregation.  Instead, they will be blessed  and then sent on their way to LWR for distribution around the globe.  As always, donations are accepted for LWR's shipping fund.  You may place your donation in the donation box to the left of the Giving Tree or to any of the Scraps and Prayers representatives.
Additionally, we make quilts to support other organizations in the community.  Among the organizations are the Marines at Camp Pendleton through two organizations - Wounded Warrior Battalion-West and Military Outreach Ministries.  Both full size and baby quilts are donated to the Marines.  We will display some of the quilts which will be donated to the Marines before the end of the year.  We have already given 30 quilts to the Wounded Warrior Battalion this year as they had 30 beds occupied and no personalized quilts to top those beds.
We provided fifteen baby quilts to the April Giving Tree Project - Es Por Los Ninos;  have made fourteen prayer quilts this year and distributed six of them to congregation members; and are giving twelve quilts to Foster teens who are entering UCSD this fall.
As with previous years, in addition to sending the quilts and 100 school bags which were filled with school supplies during Bethlehem Serves which we send to Lutheran World Relief, we are also collecting full size bars of soap through October 9th.   Bring one, bring ten, bring all the full size soap bars you want - please put them in the box labeled LWR soap bars next to the Giving Tree Table.  As always, your support is very much appreciated.
**Who is Mary Ellen Hopkins and why this is such a special and unique opportunity to support our quilt making through your donations when choosing one of her quilts.  Below is a brief biography of this amazing quilter.   Tiny, feisty Mary Ellen was full of life and certainly marched to her own drummer when it came to quilting. In the American Quilting Society office, stories like "Her class was the first class in quilting I ever took," or "It's Okay if You Sit on My Quilt was the first quilting book I bought. I can remember sitting there with graph paper and colored pencils, imagining the possibilities." Mary Ellen gifted the quilting world with a refreshing approach to patchwork and to life.
Mary Ellen opened the Crazy Ladies and Friends Quilt Shop in Santa Monica, California in 1977. She often recalled, "The customers came in more for the fabric than for the sewing and the classes were more lectures than hands-on.   Classes offered at her shop developed into invitations to give lectures. Following the release of The It's Okay If You Sit on My Quilt Book, Hopkins began teaching workshops to quilt shop owners interested in her techniques. She lectured throughout the United States and internationally.
Mary Ellen preferred to give talks rather than use a workshop format. She observed of herself, "Getting up on a stage and talking without interruptions was great."  
After 20 years, she sold the shop and devoted all her time to teaching and lectures. In 1982, she started her own publishing company with her first book, The It's Okay If You Sit on My Quilt Book, which many quilters still have in their libraries. Mary Ellen was also the author of Baker's Dozen DoubledConnecting Up and its follow-up ...Continuing OnConnector's Collection 4 11/12, and A Log Cabin Notebook.
Mary Ellen is probably best known for creating the connector and perfect piecing triangles concepts and the PPM - Personal Private Measurement.
Scraps and Prayers wants to thank her son, David Hopkins, for the donation of his mother's quilts and those of some of her students.  And none of this would have been possible had Lori Wolf, the daughter of Scraps and Prayers founder, Trudy Disselhorst, not decided to go garage saling in her neighborhood one beautiful summer Saturday.  

 Giving Tree

Giving Tree September 30th thru October 9th-   Scraps and Prayers/Lutheran World Relief (see article block above)

Giving Tree After October 10th through November 30th

Our annual Secret Santa Project will be starting.   Our emphasis this year is on teenagers, young adults and parents.  Grocery store gift cards may also be purchased.  Please sign out at the Giving Tree and  bring the items back in one week.   All gifts must be received by Sunday, November 25th so please be prompt in returning your gifts.   

Also, as with last couple of years, we are going to reach out and help raise money for a building project for a center to support those living and discriminated against with HIV/AIDS in Baja California.  Please check the Giving Tree for more information.  Any questions please call Cheryl Monreal at (760) 942-1482.

Left over Halloween Candy?  We will be collecting your left over Halloween candy.  Please leave at the Giving Tree.

 Women's Christmas Bazaar

Women's Christmas Bazaar
Sunday, December 2nd from 8:30 - noon in the Family Center

Bring your Christmas shopping list.  What will be available - handcrafted items, baked goods, jam and jellies, Scholastic Books and pre-ordered SERRV products to mention a few items.
Crafters and Cooks  Please consider contributing your beautiful handcrafts, delicious preserves and baked goods or any special skill you may have to sell at the Christmas Bazaar on December 2nd.  Please deliver baked goods or craft items to the Family Center on Saturday, Dec. 1st between 10:00 a.m. - noon or on Sunday, Dec. 2nd  before 9:00.  For information  or to make alternative arrangements, please contact Kim Oswald, rdoswald@aol.com or 760 634-2995.  Proceeds will benefit the ministries of the Bethlehem Women of the ELCA.  Thank you for your support.

 Women's Retreat

Women's Retreat

Save the Date!!!  Our next Bethlehem Women's Retreat will be held February 1 - 3, 2019 at Luther Glen. Stay tuned for more details.

 Choose To Serve (Outreach Ministries)

Upcoming Opportunities to Serve Others

October 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 8:30-11:30am   Scraps and Prayers
October 14 10:00am   Prayer Shawl Ministry
October 15, 3:30-5:30pm  TACO      
October 20 8:30am-3:30pm  Habitat For Humanity Home Repair Project
October 27, 9:00-2:00pm   Pajama Project

Scraps and Prayers

This group sews quilts, and assembles school bag and fabric kits for people in need.  We meet each Wednesday morning from 8:30-11:30am in the Multi-Use Room.  We need your help cutting, sewing and tying quilts.  No experience necessary!  Come along for an hour or the whole morning; we'd love to share our scraps and prayers with you.  For more information, contact Kim Oswald at rdoswald@aol.com or Laure Reynolds at laurereyn@roadrunner.com.

TACO (Third Avenue Charitable Organization)

(See article block below)

Pajama Project
Making hundreds of pajamas for kids in need, Pajama Project is truly a work of the larger community. People from Bethlehem and from all over the community come regularly throughout the year to create these wonderful pajamas.  If you can spare time to come join us, we'd love to see you! Come for a little while or spend the whole day. Any time you can share with us is truly appreciated. We will serve lunch for volunteers during the  noon  hour.  If you'd like to help in another way, we are always looking for someone to provide lunch for our hard working volunteers by bringing in food or donating money which we'll use to pick up something local. No matter the size, all donations are a great benefit.  If you like to sew, or know someone who does, we have kits available to take home and construct.

Work days are regularly scheduled for the last Saturday of each month from 9:00 am-2:00 pm.

For more information, please contact Belinda Simonini at  belindasimonini@gmail.com .
Prayer Shawl Ministry

Please join us for Prayer Shawl meeting on Sunday, Oct 14th @ 10 am, in the conference room. Bring your yarn and knitting needles/crochet hooks. Feel free to drop in before or after your favorite church service! Questions, contact Janet Mastrogany @ 629 980-8671.

We are in need of knitters and crocheters to create shawls for our Prayer Shawl Ministry, as we are very low in supply.  Shawls are given, as available, to those who are in need of comfort and solace, as well as in celebration and joy. You may create these at home at your convenience. Patterns are available at  www.shawlministry.com.  
Here is a quote from their website: "Shawls...made for centuries universal and embracing, symbolic of an inclusive, unconditionally loving, God.  They wrap, enfold, comfort, cover, give solace, mother, hug, shelter and beautify. Those who have received these shawls have been uplifted and affirmed, as if given wings to fly above their troubles."  
Contact Janet Mastrogany 619 980-8671   janet.mastrogany@gmail.com 

St. Andrews Food Pantry

St. Andrews food pantry needs our help.  Every Thursday morning  a team meets at Gelsons market in Carlsbad to pick up food and transport it back to the food pantry. If you can devote one Thursday a month to this project your help would be appreciated. If interested please contact Bob Moran at St. Andrews at 760-487-1630 or  bobpatmoran@cox.net

CRC (Community Resource Center)

New and Used Bikes Needed!   Community Resource Center's Holiday Baskets provides a dignified and free "shopping experience" for families in need during the holidays. One of the biggest items on the CRC's donation wish list is bikes of all sizes for children or adults. If you have one gathering dust in your garage, please consider bringing joy to someone this Christmas by donating it to CRC. Contact Sheri Burtt at sherissb@gmail.com for more information or to arrange for a pick up. To view the complete Holiday Baskets Wish List, visit http://crcncc.org/wp-content/uploads/Holiday_Baskets_Wish_List_2018.pdf.

Habitat For Humanity Home Repair Project

Once again we have an opportunity to assist a family with a home repair project on their residence on Saturday, October 20, in Chula Vista from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. So far we have 5 members signed up but need another 2 or 3 people; no major construction skills required. If you can join us and assist with this worthy project, please contact Jim Mastrogany @ 619-980-1871 or  james.mastrogany@gmail.com
 TACO (Third Avenue Charitable Organization)
Socks & Underwear Drive for TACO

Socks & underwear are always needed for our friends at TACO, especially as the weather turns cooler this fall. They need men's white athletic tube socks and men's briefs in all sizes. There will be a large black plastic tub labeled TACO in the Narthex for your donations. Let's see if we can fill that tub to overflowing!!   Thank you so much!!

Alternates for Serving at TACO
We also need a few people who would be willing to be "on call" to come help serve the meal the 3rd Monday of the Month if we are short of people. We have to be there by 3:15 and are done serving at 5:30. I generally have room for a couple of people in my car and we do have a good time! If you are interested and/or have any questions, please call me, Lori Cook, at 760 207-0432.   Thank you so much!
TACO Fast Facts for 2017
  • Served food to more than 15,000 people in need.
  • Provided more than 20,000 meals.
  • Provided social services to more than 25 individuals each week. This can range from a safe and secure place to receive mail and store documents to assistance with finding affordable housing, establishing identity, to assistance with emotional trauma.
  • Our meal volunteers gave 6500 hours of service throughout the year.
  • Provided ongoing counseling to 24 people per week.
  • An average of 300 people a week received free health services, legal services, dental care, and acupuncture care.
  • More than 125 student volunteers learned and trained with our medical and dental clinics during the year.
  • 384 new volunteers came to learn about those who go without in our community.
  • TACO held 8 Clinics weekly, treating people weekly in collaboration with UCSD School of Medicine, Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, California Western School of Law, Pre-dental Society of San Diego County, and SDSU School of Social Work.
  • Going Home End-of-Life Services program & volunteers continued weekly to work with people who were terminally ill or medically vulnerable, which is a unique program in San Diego County.
  • Assisted individuals to travel to vital health and wellness appointments.
All of this is done with private donations and grants without any government funding.

 Stephen Ministry

Stephen Ministry

This month seven individuals will complete the Stephen Ministry Training Class after 20 weeks of studying, classes, and practice. Please pray for these exceptional people as they extend their new caring skills to the church, their families, and the community. Those continuing on to become Stephen Ministers will be commissioned on Sunday, June 19.

If you are going through a difficult time in your life and would like the care of a Stephen Minister please speak with Pr Laura or one of our Stephen Leaders Molly Hall, or Laure Reynolds.

Dear Lord, as our newest Stephen Ministers begin their first caring relationships, be with them in all that they do. Help them not to be anxious or fearful but to call upon you for strength, always remembering that their ministry is your ministry. Be with their care receivers as they open their doors and begin to walk the road to recovery. Bless these relationships that they may be a place of your love and healing. Amen

 Music Ministry- New Life Band

The New Life Band is coming to Bethlehem and will be participating in worship services Sunday, October 28 th . Host families are needed to provide bed and board. If you are able to help please contact the church office, 760-753-1026, to volunteer or for more information.

  Bethlehem Advocacy Team
Advocacy - Connecting Faith and Public Life

California Statewide Election - November 6th
Voter Registration and election information will be available at the Bethlehem Advocacy table on Sundays between services. Stop by for updates on local and statewide races.
Other election resources:
News from the Washington, D.C. including reports from state Advocacy offices.  
For information or questions about Bethlehem's Advocacy Team, contact Karin Kloehn at blcadvocacy@gmail.com

 Interfaith Rotational Shelter
Just In!  BLC and Seaside Community Center will be hosting the homeless here in the Multi-use Room at BLC from March 24 through April 7, 2019. More details to follow.
Your coordinators, 
Blair Lindberg and Diane Langager

 Church Property Maintenance Requests

Notice something on our church campus that needs fixing? Concerned about lighting, air conditioning/heating, water, etc.? We have a property manager who can take care of your concerns. Please call or leave a message with the church office (760-753-1026) or email property@blcenc.org and someone will get back to you.

 Newsletter Now Available on Our Website

Have you missed one of our monthly e-newsletters? Have you wished you could open up that newsletter again to get that bit of information you were looking for? Well, now you can. On our Newsletter Archive  page there are links available to view current and past newsletters.

 Need Help?

Join us in meeting the needs of our North County community. The new Resource Book in the church office has resources that can help those in need. Be equipped to help those who may be experiencing hard times. If you know of a helpful resource or are having difficulties finding the help you need, please contact Sarah Breding at sbreding@cox.net.


Bethlehem is now participating in the AmazonSmile program. This is a great way to easily benefit our congregation when you are shopping online.

Bethlehem will receive 0.5% of the price of eligible online purchases automatically when you use the smile.amazon.com website. See the website for more details.

 Thrivent Financial

Choice Dollars
The Thrivent Choice® program lets eligible members recommend where some of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans' charitable outreach funds go by directing Choice Dollars®. Bethlehem Lutheran is an eligible recipient of these funds.
For more information click on the link below, 
https://www.thrivent.com/thriventchoice/program/dollars_details/index.html   or contact your Thrivent congregational advocate, Dennis Astroth at 858-354-3566, or dennis.astroth@gmail.com.

 Online Giving

Online Giving

A Green Path to Stewardship


We are always looking for ways to make giving more convenient and environmentally friendly. With today's online financial tools, it has never been easier to set up and track regular giving, special offerings and donations to specific areas. Just follow the easy steps provided with our new online service and you will be surprised at how easy it is to be a regular giver at whatever level seems right. We have expanded on the services provided by the same Minnesota-based online service that has managed our electronic giving for a number of years. They serve thousands of churches, and the service is secure, maintaining privacy. 


How to get started...

You may access the online service by clicking on the link on Bethlehem's web Stewardship page. Once you are on the site, you may use your checking account, or your debit or credit card information. If your cards are on a mileage program, you can gain frequent-flier miles while helping support the ministries of Bethlehem.

Dear  ,


Thank you for registering with our e-mail announcement and update service at www.blcenc.org


Yours in Christ

Bethlehem Lutheran Webmaster