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This Ministry
That We Share

       Southern District - LCMS
    December 15, 2016

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In 1543, as Christmas approached, Luther gave a lecture on Isaiah 9:6 in which he portrayed Christ as a ladder:

"The Son of God did not want to be seen and found in heaven. Therefore he descended from heaven into this humility and came to us in our flesh, laid himself into the womb of his mother and into the manger and went on to the cross. This was the ladder that he placed on earth so that we might ascend to God on it. This is the way you must take. If you depart from this way and try to speculate about the glory of the Divine Majesty-without this ladder-you will invent marvelous matters that transcend your horizon, but you will do so at very great harm to yourself."
                         "From Heaven Above to Earth I Come"
                        by Martin Luther, 1483-1546

1. "From heaven above to earth I come
To bear good news to every home;
Glad tidings of great joy I bring,
Whereof I now will say and sing:
2. "To you this night is born a child
Of Mary, chosen virgin mild;
This little child, of lowly birth,
Shall be the joy of all the earth.

Camp Restore Baton Rouge, at Trinity Oaks

 District DDRC Rev. Ed Brashier has been working with Pastor David Buss, Trinity - Baton Rouge, in coordinating volunteer work teams.  If you wish to volunteer, contact DCE Nick Butcher at

"FAMILY TO FAMILY" will be available as families are identified who can be matched to a congregation or family willing to provide support and encouragement to a family in the affected area.  If your congregation or a family or individual would be interested in this, please contact Kathy Wendling at  She will be compiling a list of interested congregations and families with the idea of pairing them when the time is right.

There is still a need for donations -- Pastor Ed has requested Gatorade and Trail Mix!!
These can be delivered to the Southern District Office at 100 Mission Dr., Slidell, LA Monday through Thursday, 8 AM to 5 PM or to Camp Restore in Baton Rouge.
                     ANCHORS AWAY!     cruise-ship-banner2.jpg

Ginger Kramp is happy to assist with any and all questions. You may contact Ginger with questions at  or  601-991-1109.
District Mission Support Trends

        2014               2015               2016
Total Budget             $1,100,000         $900,000        $900,000

Budgeted Income        $1,008,333              $825,000           $825,000             
through 11/30

Actual Income                  $846,549             $807,979          $741,045
through 11/30
My sincere apologies!!  The information was not updated in the Dec. 1 issue of TMTWS.  These are the accurate numbers through 11/30/16.



Remember that submissions for the January/February issue of SOS are due by January 15. The preferred means for receiving submissions is by email ( Please send photos as JPEG files, attached to the email. Congregational news that is received but exceeds space in the printed SOS will be published on the "Around the District" blog of our website. Thank you for sharing your news!

                                                                                                                                                            (click on image for                                                                                                                                                              the current issue)

December 18
3:00 PM
Installation of Rev. Paul McComack Trinity Lutheran Church
Panama City, FL
December 23, 2016 - January 2, 2017 Christmas Southern District Office Closed
January 30-February 4
Southern District Pastors' Conference Cruise

1st Annual SDCL Conference
The Intersection of Liturgy and Catechesis
January 22-24, 2017
St. Paul's Lutheran Church-Cullman, AL
Sunday, January 22

7:00pm-Opening Divine Service
8:00pm-Depart for hotels
Monday, January 23
9:30am-Donuts & Coffee/Fellowship
10:00am-Pr. Burnell Eckardt: "Considering and Parsing the Center of the Liturgy:
                                                    Part 1 - Preface and Sanctus"
A consideration of the integral connection of the chief parts of the historic mass to each other, from a Biblical and liturgical point of view, and why this matters in catechesis.
11:30am-Q and A
11:45am-Announcements/Prepare for lunch at the church
1:00pm-Pr. Burnell Eckardt: "Considering and Parsing the Center of the Liturgy:
                                                   Part 2 - Our Father and Verba"
2:30pm-Q and A
4:00pm-Depart for Goat Island Brewery tour
6:00pm-Dinner (Pastors and spouses are invited to Dinner at Pr. Bussman's house)
Tuesday, January 24
9:30am-Coffee & Donuts/Fellowship
9:45am-Pr. Larry Beane: "Reformation vs. Revolution: Year 501 and Beyond"
11:15am-Q and A
11:45am-Announcements/Prepare for lunch at the church
1:00pm-Pr. John Bussman: "From Font to Feast: Reclaiming Lutheran Identity through 
                                                Liturgical Catechesis"
2:30pm-Q and A
3:30pm-Closing Divine Service
After Closing Service*:
4:30pm-Depart for Ave Maria Grotto or the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament
7:00pm-Dinner together at a local restaurant
8:00pm-Pastors are invited to return to the church for camaraderie
*We will conclude our formal activities with the Divine Service. We certainly invite all to stay the evening for camaraderie and fellowship, but you are free to depart for home as necessary. If you are able to stay the night, you will be free to leave first thing in the morning.
Registration Information:
Full Conference Registration: $50 per person
Register online at sdconfessionallutherans.wordpress.comRegister by email at Or register by phone by calling 337-375-6288. Online registration is preferred.
A block of rooms has been reserved at the brand new La Quinta Inn & Suites in Cullman at a special discounted rate of $89. When you call to reserve your room, indicate that you are with "St. Paul's Lutheran Church."
La Quinta Inn & Suites
2054 St Joseph Dr NW, Cullman, AL 35055
Phone: (256) 775-9500
We have worked to keep the conference costs low to make this opportunity accessible to as many people as possible. The offering from the two Divine Services will help offset additional conference costs.



       Christ the King - Natchitoches, LA            Grace - Huntsville, AL

       St. James - Gonzales, LA                           St. Paul's - Decatur, AL  
       Trinity - Monroe, LA                                      St. Paul's - Cullman, AL
       St. Paul - Shreveport, LA

Rev. Marcus Ring, St. Paul, Shreveport, LA to St. John, Gregory, SD ~ Accepted


Celebrating the Ministry of Pastor and People 

Anniversary of Ordination

5th ~ Rev. James Steven Richardson - St. Paul, Montgomery, AL


Portals of Prayer author for November 2016 Jonathan Schkade blessed us with daily devotions all with one word titles conveying action. For example, he titled the devotion "Remembering" on Veterans Day, "Thanking" on Thanksgiving Day, and "Rising" on the First Sunday in Advent.
As we enter this new church year preparing for Jesus' Coming, our Synod reminds us in the StewardCAST newsletter that Stewardship and Mission are an Essential Partnership.

We confirm our partnership commitment on our website using these words . . .
The Southern District of the LCMS partners completely and totally with its member Congregations in mission and ministry, regardless of size or amount of giving, striving to be good stewards of God's Gifts, living generously and changing lives in making disciples for Jesus Christ.  We also provide details on how gifts are used.

Further, we emphasize this active partnership by  defining stewardship in this manner: "Christian stewardship is the free and joyous activity of the child of God and God's family, the church, in managing all of life and life's resources for God's purposes." We in the Southern District like to emphasize that the Love for Christ, generated by the Gospel, is the motivating factor for true Christian giving. For this reason we add the statement . . . "In response to the Gospel, stewardship is part of discipleship." 
Blessed with a New Year of promises and opportunities, each of our families of faith make stewardship plans in terms of how we will use God's gifts of time, talents, treasure, and testimony in mission and ministry. Please punctuate your partnership commitment by submitting a District Partnership 2017 form online or download the form and send it by mail. Either way, regardless of size or amount of your gift, you will contribute to creating a "Culture of Partnership" in making disciples for Jesus.  
Southern District Stewardship Committee



  Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;..."John 11:25 (NIV)
  These brothers and sisters in Christ coping with cancer:
  • Rev. Jerry Conley (Emeritus - Marianna, FL)
  • Rev. Jack Betz (Emeritus - Miramar Beach, FL)
  • Mrs. Gloria Moritz, widow of Rev. Victor Moritz (Emeritus - Metairie, LA)
  • Rev. Sidney Ponseti (Emeritus - Baton Rouge, LA)
  • Rev. Ed Rogers (Emeritus - Ozark, AL)
  • Mrs. Doris Taglauer, wife of Rev. Jim Taglauer (Emeritus - Folsom, LA) 
  • Rev. Dr. James Holowach (Christ - Jackson, MS)
  • Rev. David Robatzen (Lutheran Church of the Resurrection - Pensacola, FL)
      These brothers and sisters in Christ coping with various health issues:
    • Mrs. Melodie Rupp, wife of Rev. Bob Rupp (Emeritus - Pensacola, FL)
    • Mrs. June Ring, mother of Rev. Marcus Ring (St. Paul - Shreveport, LA)
    • Rev. Michael Shannon (Faith - Shreveport, LA)
    • Rev. Rory Hermann (Good Shepherd - Gulf Breeze, FL)
    • Rev. Brandon Simoneaux (Christ Our Savior - Harvey, LA)
    • Rev. Dr. James P. Brown (Emeritus - Pensacola, FL)
    • Dr. J. B. Marshall (Concordia College Alabama Board of Regents member)
    • Rev. Dr. Edgar Homrighausen (Emeritus - Lacombe, LA)
    • Rev. Rod Pasch (Open Arms - Slidell, LA)
    May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed. Thessalonians 2: 16-17  (NIV)

    We are excited to let you know that the Development Grant Program offered by the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod through the Office of National Mission has re-opened. A quick link to the site is . 
    Last year our budgeted grant funds were combined with monies from Thrivent Financial and LCEF to offer the Stand With Your Community grant opportunity in honor of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. That was a one-time opportunity that ended in 2015. 
    The amount available for our regular Development Grant Program is much smaller and the monies are part of our yearly budget. However this is also an on-going program that has been offered since the mid 1980's. Since each application is required to include an endorsement letter from the district president some of you may already be familiar with these grants or previous applicants. If you are not already familiar with our program then this note is your invitation to learn more.
    Since this is a transition year we are only offering one cycle this fiscal year. Applications are due by  February 1st and grants will be awarded in May 2017.  During fiscal year 2017/2018 we will again offer both the Fall and Spring cycles of our grant program. Our webpage _
       will always have the current information.
    If you have any questions please contact me at or  314-996-1386
    Barb Hoffmann
    Manager, Grant Administration 
    The Lutheran Church -Missouri Synod
    1333 S. Kirkwood, St. Louis, MO 63122
                                    THE GIFT OF GENEROSITY-Electronic Giving
     A definition of generous includes this phrase: 
    Freely sharing valuable things.   Freely sharing
    . . .no strings attached. . .no tit for tat. . .nothing expected in return.   Valuable things: your child. What is more valuable than a life of someone you love beyond measure?   As we reflect on this message, remember Those Who Don't Yet Know Jesus.  Your continued support for the mission and ministry of the Southern District is requested. 
    If you need a convenient way to make regular offerings, we encourage you to look into our electronic online giving options.  

    Visit here or contact Ronnie Giaise  at the Southern District office for more information ---

    Illustration by Patti Miller, Member of Redeemer Lutheran Church in Fairhope, Alabama.              Southern District -LCMS               504-282-2632

    100 Mission Dr.
    Slidell LA 70460