Staying Connected
Well Folks I think it might be safe to put away the snow shovels.

Every spring I always wait for one final snowfall. I spend March thinking we've got at last one more snowstorm coming, I spend April wondering how cold is it going to be if I try going to a Twins game this month (I've had to brush snow and ice of the seat a few times), and in May I'm still not convinced we're out of the woods. Well this weekend I think I've decided it's safe to have the snow shovels put up in the garage and we're done with winter. Maybe it's the fact we've mowed our lawn now a couple times, or this weekend I got to dip my toes in Lake Washington while we went on a pontoon ride with friends, or the fact the aloe very is now flowing at the Geer house after some time in the sun upon that before mentioned pontoon ride. Summer is right around the corner and what an exciting time that is.

I had a conversation with a member last night and we were talking about Pentecost and what a great season it is in the church. It's the longest of the church seasons. It may not have the excitement of Advent and the coming birth of Jesus, or that of lent as we go towards the death of Jesus but then enter into Easter where we celebrate the love of Jesus displayed to us, but there's something about it. What we were discussing last night was the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit, God among us. What an amazing thing. To see the Holy Spirit alive in everything around us. I see it as the world just becomes more green and as the sun warms our skin as the days are getting longer. I see it in the opportunities that are happening all around us. Vacation bible school starting in two weeks, youth service trip in three week.... who scheduled those back to back :) The involvement Grace is having in the South Central MN Food Recovery. The way things are opening up all around us. The Holy Spirit is at work and is alive. It lights that flame in us to go out and be the church. I reminded the 2021 graduates in my children's message this past Sunday that they are no going out in the world and they all have a flame lite inside of them to go out and let God shine out.

As we go through this time of Pentecost I hope you will feel that flame. That Holy Spirit igniting you to go out into the world and share that light.
 
  
Ben

New Mask Policy at Grace
Senior Sunday
Sunday May 23rd will be Senior Sunday here at Grace. At worship we'll celebrate the High School Graduating Class of 2021. The youth will receive a quilt made by out Grace Quilters and some will receive a the Grace Lutheran Church Servanthood Award. Everyone is invited to join in the celebration of class of 2021
Emily Spieker, William Gronewald, Wyatt Block, Brandon McLean,
Anna Bauer, Julia Domas
VBS & Youth Summer Service Trip Fundraiser
This May our focus at Grace is going to be on the youth here at the church. We continue to strive to pro-vide great opportunities for the youth to grow in their faith. Through our programs like Vacation Bible School and summer trips, we are able to help these kids feel the love of God. This love that they receive aids them in living out their faith in our community and beyond.

Next month the youth have the opportunity to attend Vacation Bible School (VBS) June 7th-11th and 11 youth and 2 adults will be heading to Duluth MN for our 2021 Summer Service trip.

There are many ways you can help us make these opportunities great for the youth.

The main thing you can do is to keep us all in your prayers during these weeks so we are kept safe and are able to constantly feel the presence of God during these events.
The other way to help is through donations of money, craft supplies and time.

Below you’ll find a form of different ways to donate. In some cases we’re looking for monetary donations that will help defray the costs of our summer events. We also have a list of craft supplies that can be dropped off at the church that we will use during VBS week. The last way we could use your help is if you would like to help be here and assist with our VBS programming in person. Helping with VBS would involve assisting in crafts with the kids, getting lunch ready, and being an inspiring adult for the kids to be around.

Thank you for your continued support for the youth at Grace.
Red Cross Blood Drive
Friday May 28th
12:30 - 5:30

2 Appointments remain
Give Power Reds
2:00 and 3:00
Thursday Night Zoom
Bible Study
Thursday May th
7:00 pm

All Are Welcome!
We continue to meet every Thursday evening at 7:00 over zoom for our weekly bible study. We're always looking for more people to join. Most weeks will be lead by Ben but other weeks the study will be lead by another Grace member. The study is on Daily Faith Practices and the Bible Study material is provided by the ELCA. Each week we'll spend some time chatting and sharing some highlights and lowlights from our week as we fellowship. Following that we will spend time diving into a study each week. All the studies can be viewed ahead of time and can be found by clicking HERE. We will also have a few weeks of the studies shared in this weekly newsletter. So you can look ahead to help guide discussion. Each week we'll gather over zoom for about an hour.

We hope you will consider joining us for this time of bible study and fellowship. All are Welcome whether you've joined us in the past or not.

We hope yo see you soon
**************************************
Upcoming Studies
Mark your Calendar




June 17th
No Zoom Bible Study this week.
Ben on Service trip in Duluth with the Youth

Clicking on the Study will take you to a PDF copy
Clicking on the scripture will take you to the reading for the study
**************************************


Thursday Bible Study


Zoom Meeting ID 857 5766 8823
Meeting Passcode: grace


Time 7:00 pm Thursday
Every week will have the same meeting ID and Passcode
2021 Vacation Bible School
"King of Me"
June 7th - 11th
We are planning an in-person Vacation Bible School (VBS) this summer. We will be holding here at Grace the week after schools get out the week of June 9th. The theme for the week is "King of Me." We will explore some of the characters from the Old Testament and how God is bigger than some of the obstacles that were put in their way and how God is the kind of all those things. When we feel alone God is with us. This week will be full of fun worship, crafts and activities as well. This will be fully run by Grace so we will be looking for volunteers to help during the week. If you have time available or an older child at home that you want to get out of the house to help please let Ben know (DSG@gracemankato.org) and he'd love to have some help. He will take help during the days with programing, food, childcare before and after or even planning the VBS if you are feel very adventurous.


All kids are welcomed to attend. They don't have to be a member of Grace
Children ages Kindergarten - 6th Grade are invited.
Programing will run from 8:30 - 3:00 Monday - Thursday and 8:30 - noon on Friday. Early drop off and late pick up will be available to families that need it.
Meals will be provided Monday - Thursday
Suggested Donation of $35 to cover cost of food and craft supplies

Click below to sign up.
Connections Shelter
Connections Shelter will be closing for the season May 31st. Grace is now done serving meals for this season and I would like to thank everyone who has helped us with this ministry the year. It has been great to see folks so willing to jump in and help out. I look forward to this again next year and seeing how it grows.

There is still a chance to sign up to help out with the shelter though on June 1st. They will be doing a deep clean of the shelter that day. If you are interested in helping out with that you can access their sign up by clicking the link below.
While we are not yet meeting in person for children PreK - 6th Grade we do want to make weekly lessons available online. You can access the weekly lessons we would be doing by clicking the links below. There are great activities that can be done as a family together.
Worshiping Together Virtually
Our Facebook live stream is a great way to gather with others(although virtually)as we are all part of this assembly as we gather as the one body of Christ to chat, share a greeting of peace and worship together. A live stream of our worship is broadcasted every Sunday morning at 10:00 and is 50-60 minutes long.

If you do not have Facebook worship is will still be available on KTOE Sunday mornings at 10:00 and the rebroadcast on KTV Tuesday at 1:00 pm and again Wednesday at 7:15 pm. Past worships can also be found on YouTube and our Website. Our goal is that everyone will still have an opportunity to worship with us at Grace.

All the past worship services can be found by going to

Worship
May 23rd 2021
In-Person Worship
We acknowledge that the risks of this pandemic are not over, and if you are unsure about being in the building, we encourage you to stay home and worship with us from a distance. If you enjoy worshipping from home, we encourage you to continue to do just that. We are opening our doors again but we encourage people to do what is best for your family right now. We want to offer the opportunity for everyone to connect with their faith in ways that are meaningful and meet you where you are. For now, we are glad you can be here with us, whether you are watching live on Facebook, listening on KTOE radio, following along on YouTube or KTV in Mankato. Even after we return to holding worship in our building, we will continue to provide these means of participating with us from a distance including a livestream on Facebook. 

However you participate, now and in the future, we believe you are a part of this assembly, gathered as the one body of Christ to worship and celebrate our life of faith together.
Christ in our Home
Devotional
Christ In Our Home are still available here at Grace. You can stop in and pick on up anytime during church office hours.

You can access a digital copy by clicking HERE
Fair Trade Coffee
New Fair Trade merchandise is now on the cart.

All items are prices as marked

Sister's Blend Ground Coffee and Toffee Caramel Flavored Coffee are back!!!

Items are located near the narthex and can be bought during church office hours and Sunday mornings.
Find more information about Mankato Fair Trade Products and their Mission by clicking the link below

Serving the Community

Echo Food Shelf - Echo is still looking for volunteers to commit to one 2-4 hour shift/week. You can email echofoodshelf@yahoo.com to get involved.

CADA House - Committee Against Domestic Abuse, Inc. (CADA) is a nonprofit victim advocacy and emergency shelter organization based in Mankato, Minnesota. CADA’s mission is to provide safety and support to victims of domestic and sexual violence through education, advocacy, and shelter.


Pray Together
Lord God

Thank you for pouring the Holy Spirit into us each and every day. Through that Holy Spirit we can feel your here burning a fire within us and with that we are able to praise you.

Amen
Check out this Video!
I may have shared this video before but I love it. Not only the song but the way the video was put together using a lite-brite.
Shine by David Crowder Band
Amazon Smile
Many of us has been spending more time shopping online. When shopping with amazon there is an easy way to help raise a donation go to Grace. When shopping through a web browser you can follow the link below and it's easy to set up. It's also super easy to get set up on a mobile device through the Amazon App. When signed into your account in the app in settings there is a section called "Programs and Features" in that sections you can click on AmazonSmile. I that section you can select your charity. You can search Grace Lutheran Church Mankato or type 41-6006451.

When you #StartWithaSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Grace Lutheran Church. Bookmark the link   http://smile.amazon.com/ch/41-6006451  and support us every time you shop.

You still get the same prices and you can still use your Prime account, but when you start by using this link above, Amazon will donate a portion of the price back to Grace.

Thanks for supporting Grace.
Contact Us
Pastor
Rev. John Odegard - pastor@gracemankato.org

Director of Spiritual Growth

Parish Administrator
Rich Krause - parish@gracemankato.org

Office Specialist
Joan Hertel - office@gracemankato.org

Interim Organist and Music Director
Chuck Hoogland - music@gracemankato.org

Worship and Media Technology Coordinator

Maintenance and Grounds
Jordin Johnson - grounds@gracemankato.org
Grace Lutheran Church Office Hours

Monday - Thursday 10:00a.m - 5:00p.m
Friday 10:00a.m - noon
Is there news you're wanting to have included in future staying connected newsletters? Reach out to Ben with the details and he'll be sure to included in an upcoming newsletter. New newsletters are emailed out every Monday and can also be found on Facebook or the Webpage under the At Home Resources tab.