This Ministry
That We Share

       Southern District - LCMS
    January 15, 2018

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Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. 
(Luke 2:51)

In these words the evangelist gathers up all the years of our dear Lord's youth.
     But what does it mean, "He was obedient to them"?  Simply that he walked in those works enjoined in the Fourth Commandment ("Honor your father and mother").  Such are the works that father and mother need done in the house:  he fetched water, bread, and meat; he minded the house and did other things of that kind as he was told to do, like any other child.  Therefore all good and God-loving children should say, "I grieve that I am not worthy of such honor that I should be made like the child Jesus in that I do what my Lord Christ has done.  He picked up shavings and did other such tasks as his parents told him, menial tasks such as need to be done in any household.  Yes, and what good children we should be if we should follow his example and do as our parents tell us, however poor and lowly the tasks may be."
     Christ is Lord above all things, and yet, as an example for us, he condescends to obey father and mother.  Therefore we shall take great pains to learn this story and shall deem ourselves blessed, when we walk thus obediently, for we see that Christ himself did not find such duties irksome.  (Sermons from the year 1534)

When I become weary of well-doing, O Lord, strengthen me and keep my eyes on the goal.  Amen.

Taken from Martin Luther - Day by Day We Magnify You - Daily Readings for the Entire Year

Hotel Block Rate Ends --  January 27, 2018

The convention workbook is now available on the
convention page of the Southern District website.


The Synod is issuing the first call for nominations for the 2019 convention.  For information regarding this process, please go to or click  here to go directly to the website.
District Mission Support Trends

        2015                     2016                    2017      
Total Budget                 $900,000            $900,000        $900,000

Budgeted Income           $900,000               $900,000            $900,000          
through 12/31

Actual Income                 $911,618                  $829,960           $765,412
through 12/31
Congregations who have elected new congregational officers/leaders, please update the Southern District office with their information.  Click here to submit your information online.  
If you would like a paper form, please contact



Remember that submissions for the January/February issue of SOS are due by Feb. 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)


January 21-27, 2018 National Lutheran Schools Week
March 8-9, 2018 Southern District Convention Harbor Center
Slidell, LA


       Holy Cross - Mobile, AL                       Hope - Santa Rosa Beach, FL (Associate)

        Immanuel - Bossier City, LA                  Grace - Pensacola, FL
       Redeemer - Mandeville, LA                Resurrection - Pensacola, FL
If your congregation has extended a call, had a call accepted, or had a call returned, please remember to notify the Southern District office.

Rev. George Borghardt, Zion-McHenry, IL to Immanuel, Bossier City, LA ~ Pending
Rev. Matthew Barry, St. Luke-Cabot, PA to Holy Cross-Mobile, AL ~ Declined


Celebrating the Ministry of Pastor and People 


~ January 

Anniversary of Ordination

30th ~ Rev. Mark D. Kocsis - Trinity-Dothan, AL


Any congregations who would like to apply for a vicar or call a candidate should contact Daisy Olmstead 
( to request access to the paperwork. Vicar applications and candidate call documents are due to the Southern District Office no later than March 1. This is to allow a "cushion" of time in case any revisions need to be made and re-submitted to the District before the District sends the paperwork to St. Louis.

 To date, the following number of candidates and vicars are available:

Candidates Spring 2018

St. Louis ~  54 M.Div.

Fort Wayne ~ 37 M.Div.

Vicars Spring 2018

St. Louis ~ 57

Fort Wayne ~ 44

National Lutheran Schools Week provides the network of over 2,000 LCMS preschools, elementary schools and high schools with the public opportunity to proclaim and celebrate God's work in Lutheran Schools.
In this, Lutheran Schools thank God for the opportunity to provide excellent academic preparation for the children they serve and for the opportunity to share Jesus' amazing love with students and their families.
National Lutheran Schools Week gives schools the ability to proclaim the great blessings within the communities they serve. Lutheran Schools are amazing incubators for faithful witness of God's love through Christ by teachers and students alike.
Nationally, Lutheran Schools serve over 200,000 students and their families. We have 1,150 Early Childhood Centers; 793 Elementary Schools; and 86 High Schools.
In the Southern District we serve over 2,000 students and their families. We have 14 Early Childhood Centers; 10 Elementary Schools; and 2 High Schools.
Our Lutheran Schools are raising up the next generation of faithful Christian Disciples. Our students daily experience God's lavish gifts of Love, Grace, and Mercy, and they are encouraged to share those gifts with others. Our Lutheran School students are being transformed by God's Word, and are taught to cling to the cross of Jesus.
The students in our Lutheran Schools also receive excellent academic preparation for the next step in their educational journeys. Our Lutheran School students consistently score above the national average on standardized test scores. They are also taught and modeled good citizenship by their teachers and administrators. Our Lutheran Schools prepare our students for life after school by creating in them a strong work ethic, critical thinking skills and the ability to relate well with others.
If you have a Lutheran School near you, please stop by and visit. You will be blessed by what you see and hear.

Glenn Gerber, Southern District Missions and Schools Executive

For more information, visit
or call:  Rev. Josh Leigeber - (337)375-6288 or Rev. John Bussman - (256)708-0084

  Operation Barnabas Training Event

What is Operation Barnabas?
Operation Barnabas is a network of care to our nation's military members and their families.
We reach out to all components, with a special emphasis on our Reserve members and their families You may ask: "Why is it called Operation Barnabas?" Barnabas was Paul's companion, who helped him in his missionary journey. Barnabas means "son of encouragement." We hope to encourage our military and their families!
Operation Barnabas Chapters have been created to serve our military at the congregation level. One congregation, or a number of congregations, can join together to create an Operation Barnabas Chapter. Chapters serve a a means for members to grow in their faith and also serve as a means of outreach to the local military community.

For more information: or Facebook: OperationBarnabasLCMS.

February 24, 2018 from 10 am to 2 pm.
Lunch Provided

Good Shepherd LCMS
2456 Decatur Hwy.
Gardendale, AL 35071

Registration Fee:
$5 must be received at Good Shepherd by Friday, Feb. 16.

Chaplain Gary Danielsen: Retired Major in the U.S. Army.

Chairlady:  Carlene Augustine Barthe'
Co-Chairs:  Rev. Limakatso Nare, Pastor and Yolonda Wornner Prevost, Congregation President


    A special thank you to Thrivent Financial for providing funds for the Perdido Bay Library in Lillian, Al.
On Tuesday, January 10th, Ronna and John Young, members of Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church in Lillian, Al., presented Thrivent Action cards to Nancy Thompson, volunteer at the library, for the purchase of new shelving and a rolling book cart.
    Nancy will complete the order for these new items, and volunteers from Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church will assist in assembling and placing the needed pieces in the library.
The library in Lillian provides all types of reading, listening and viewing items to area residents and visitors.   They have an extensive library of items for all ages including an area for children.
All those working in the library are volunteers and generously give of their time to provide all types of materials to the public.
   You are invited to visit the library and take a look at the improvements the new items will make and thank all the volunteers for donating their time to keep the library open for all.

Ronna and John Young and Nancy Thompson
Southern District Senior Youth Mission Trip

June 24-29
Nashville, TN
Ages: 14 and up
Cost $299 / person
Lodging and all meals are provided

We are working with YouthWorks, an organization that has been developing youth mission trips since 1994. Each summer YouthWorks provides life-changing Christ-centered mission trips for over 30,000 students and adult leaders in over 70 communities across North America.. YouthWorks seeks to listen to local ministry partners and returns to the same communities year after year. It is their desire to walk side-by-side with friends in service, helping support the work God is already doing through them. We will serve in the city of Nashville, places to be determined, but include: working with kids club, community garden, elderly care centers, soup kitchens, and more!

A typical day begins with Breakfast and preparing lunches. Morning devotions follow, and ministry/service time is from 9 am - 3 pm every day. Dinner is served at 5:30, with evening activities beginning at 6:30 pm each night. At 9:00 pm we have Large group gathering, followed by a time to process the day, 

Evening activities include a downtown scavenger hunt, community cookout, Centennial Park.

Our Chaplain: Pastor Steve Richardson will lead us in worship and devotions. 

You are responsible for your transportation and adult leaders.

To register go to

Questions? Contact DCE Cindy Namanny, 601-924-9999 or
If you are in need of vestments, please contact Pastor Kevin Wendt, Grace-Destin,  at   

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change" (James 1:17). 

Here are some gift giving insights from Synod's November StewardCAST newsletter. It is comforting to appreciate how much our district Stewardship Southern Style is in step with our synod stewardship emphasis on the Gospel and maki ng disciples. 

Prepositional Stewardship. Stewardship has been described as what the Christian gives TO. This makes sense. Theoretically, the steward gives a gift TO the Lord. Practically, this is done most often TO the local congregation. This allows the congregation, then by extension district and Synod, to be active in mission and ministry. But TO is not the only preposition that is often connected to stewardship. There is also extensive use of the word FROM. The faithful Christian steward gives their gifts FROM gratitude to the goodness of the Lord. The Lord gives, and the steward gives FROM a desire to respond. This can only happen when the steward is willing to engage two stewardship questions: "How has God blessed me and how is He calling  me to respond?" 

Forward and outward. There is, however, yet one more preposition that better captures the essence of a faithful steward. That preposition is THROUGH. In the creation account in general, the call of the steward is to work and keep the creation for the sake of others. The working and keeping of the steward was never for self. It was always a forward and outward movement. The steward was to work and keep the creation for generations to come! 
   But this forward and outward nature of stewardship forms the way that the forgiven and restored steward is to carry out their task of being a steward. Forward and outward are the directions of the Gospel! The Lord Jesus went forward and outward from His eternal throne to secure the recreation. At cross and tomb, Jesus sets right the order that stewardship failures  s of all time had messed up. From that complete work of death and resurrection, the Holy Spirit has poured forward and outward, calling failed stewards to repentance and faith in Jesus! Working through the Gospel, the fallen and restored steward is set free from the fear of death and is restored to the task of working and keeping! 

Stewarding the Gospel. The first and foremost treasure entrusted to His stewards is the treasure that is the Gospel. The work of the steward is now to be about stewarding the Gospel. Every gift of the created order is used by the faithful Christian steward for the sake of the delivery of the Gospel to others. Yes, this does include financial stewardship. But it is also so much more. It is the investment of all that we are and have in being faithful caretakers and  sharers, not owners of what God has done for us in Christ. The Holy Spirit working through the individual stewards that make up the corporate stewardship of the local congregation, district and Synod is inherently a missional act. Stewardship that flows through the conduit of the faithful steward to the world in need is the kind of stewardship that the Scriptures teach! 

   It is time that the church stops focusing on the TO and FROM, for these allow for ownership mentality to still sneak in. It is time for us to move to a stewardship understanding that is THROUGH God working in and through His stewards for the sake of the kingdom.

Submitted by Gary Grubb, Chairman


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)
Rev. and Mrs. Tim Schutt (Atonement-Metairie, LA) at the birth of son Zeke Jackson.  He joins siblings Eden and Ethan.  Congratulations to all!!
These brothers and sisters in Christ coping with cancer:
  • Rev. Jerry Conley (Emeritus - Marianna, FL)
  • Mrs. Gloria Moritz, widow of Rev. Victor Moritz (Emeritus - Metairie, LA)
  • Rev. Sidney Ponseti (Emeritus - Baton Rouge, LA)
  • Mrs. Doris Taglauer, wife of Rev. Jim Taglauer (Emeritus - Folsom, LA) 
    These brothers and sisters in Christ coping with various health issues:
    • Mrs. Melodie Rupp, wife of Rev. Bob Rupp (Emeritus - Pensacola, FL)
    • Rev. Rory Hermann (Emeritus - St. Augustine, FL)
    • Rev. Dr. James P. Brown (Emeritus - Pensacola, FL)
    • Dr. J. B. Marshall (Concordia College Alabama Board of Regents member)
    • Rev. Perry McCulllam (Unity - Birmingham, AL)
    • Rev. David Robatzen (Luth Church of the Resurrection - Pensacola, FL)
    • Rev. Bernard Ansorge (Ascension - Huntsville, AL)
    • Rev. Anthony Robinson (Christ - Tuscaloosa, AL and Epiphany - Arlington, AL)
    • Mrs. Nancy Kaul (SD Board of Directors Member) Hattiesburg, MS
    • Mrs. Grace Yunker, wife of Rev. Arthur Yunker (Emeritus - Mobile, AL)
    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)
                                    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