Leadership Thoughts From...
Rev. Daniel May
And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, "you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now." So when they had come together, they asked him, "Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." Act 1:4-8 Tomorrow is Ascension Day! How are you celebrating the final step of the Lord’s mission on earth and ascending to heaven to rule and reign? Since it is a busy time on our earthly calendars, our lay people can easily miss the day and its significance. Many celebrate on “Ascension Sunday” this Sunday! It is a good and important day to remember and its significance is clearly vital to our Christian understanding and life. Some circuits have a joint vesper service on this day and many of our Lutheran schools move their chapel day to Thursday to highlight for the children the importance of the day. Though often overlooked, the Ascension completes Jesus’s earthly mission and signifies his enthronement as heavenly king. Jesus has completed his Father’s mission and he now rules with all authority and intercedes with all sympathy as our mediator and high priest. I close with four implications of Jesus’s ascension for our lives. Remember that Jesus is presently reigning as king and remains active and engaged in our world and our lives. Therefore live boldly, confidently, and strategically as servants of the exalted king of heaven. Know that your labors in the Lord Jesus are not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). Sufferers, take heart that Jesus is not indifferent to your struggle. He has endured great suffering and is thus the most merciful and sympathetic counselor and mediator. Take your cares to your ascended Lord who hears your prayers and can respond with all heaven’s authority. Finally hope in a glorious future. The ascended Lord will return as judge and king. He will abolish injustice, end suffering, and destroy death and set up his kingdom of truth, righteousness and love. Best of all, we will be with our king forever. This is a day to celebrate and an important time for rejoicing in the resurrection! We are now 40 days from Easter, but we are never past Easter and the joy we share in our Risen and ascended Lord Jesus! Blessed Ascension Day!
Outreach & Evangelism
Rev. Geoff Robinson
At our recent southern pastors conference Rev. Dan Gadbaw, pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran in Tell City, Indiana presented Rev. Geoffrey Robinson, Executive Counselor of Outreach and Human Care, a check totaling four thousand dollars that his congregation was contributing to the Outreach Kentucky endeavor. Rev. Gadbaw challenged the pastors to encourage their congregations to contribute a thousand dollars from each congregation to this effort. He pointed out that this outreach endeavor was very important to his congregational members. You can learn more about why Outreach Kentucky is a mission field right in our backyard on our website. On our Outreach Kentucky page, there is a video that you can view and share with your congregation, as well as brochures with more information and details. Geoff Robinson receiving the $4,000 check from Emmanuel Lutheran. Dan Gadbaw challenging other congregations to give at least $1,000 to Outreach Kentucky Dan Gadbaw explaining why his congregation is generously backing Outreach Kentucky. Geoff Robinson thanks Dan Gadbaw.
Mr. Ron Bleke
According to a study completed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), a hacker attacks a different computer every 39 seconds. That’s 2,244 attacks every day—2,244 times that someone attempts to steal information, alter computer files or commit other cyber crimes through another person’s system. How does this affect religious institutions? Computers at worship centers commonly contain valuable data, such as financial records, personal information and irreplaceable documents—all very attractive to a cyber criminal. Utilize cyber security in all of your computer-related practices to protect these electronic valuables. Read more on how to protect your church and school from cyber attacks here. Data breach is one of the fastest growing crimes in America. For victims, it’s a painful and costly problem. When information is stolen that compromises identities and financial security, victims can be left wondering what they can do to regain not only their assets, but their peace of mind. Read more on protecting against cyber liability and data breach here. For further reading, read this four page Risk Reporter by Church Mutual Insurance Company about protecting your precious personal information here.
Dr. Jon Mielke
Extracurricular school events are fun to watch. If we have a family member that participates in such an event, that event becomes even more interesting and brings about a heightened sense of interest. Whether that event is an athletic, musical, play, or pageant, each event brings about a sense of individual or collective competitiveness and desire to perform at one’s best. Each one of these events and others necessitate individual or team preparation so as to remain fit to perform at one’s best. Even with the best of preparation though, we are not guaranteed that the outcome of that event will bring victory or success. And, as we take this reality into our classrooms on a daily basis, we must ask ourselves, “Are we preparing appropriately to deliver Christian instruction and ward off the devil each day?” And we should further ask, “Are we attending worship and partaking in the Lord’s Supper frequently?” “Are we regularly attending Bible study?” Are we regularly praying with and for colleagues and students?” “Are we taking time to read and reflect on God’s Word each day?” Like me, the answer to all four questions would most likely be, “No.” The need, interest and desire are certainly there; however, daily schedules often deter our efforts. In times like these, we are forgiven. Jesus performed with perfection! Our performance is riddled with miscues and shortcomings. Jesus overcame every stumbling block as He took our sins to the cross. We succumb to stumbling blocks and return to the Cross for forgiveness. Jesus fulfilled the Law and His Father’s will willingly and perfectly. We, on the other hand, willfully disobey our Heavenly Father succumb to our own selfish nature and interests. Our Lord, Jesus constantly intercedes on our behalf. That grace has to bring relief to you and me. As Peter reminds us, “He himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by His wounds you have been healed (1 Peter 2:24). We can be assured of God’s mercy, grace, and love because of Jesus. We can take comfort knowing our eternal victory is anchored in Jesus’ victory over sin, death, and the devil. As Paul reminds Timothy to repeatedly confess Jesus, we, too, confess Jesus, live that Christian faith and walk and daily receive strength from God’s Spirit that began in us at our Baptisms. You do not fight alone! Dr. Jon Mielke, Superintendent of Lutheran Schools
Rev. Phillip Krupski
We pray to the Lord, asking Him to bless our lives with the outflow of His grace. It all centers in what He has given us in His Son Jesus. From that flows all the other things that enrich our daily experience. So we have prayed for our economy. If you have invested in the stock market, you may very well have had huge gains during the past years. You talk with your tax advisor who advises that if you sell that stock, you will have a big tax bill to pay on the capital gains. It has now become a sizable asset that you will never be “able” to use. What do you do? You could consider a Charitable Gift Annuity with the LCMS Foundation. You “gift” the asset to an LCMS ministry of your choice, such as the Indiana District, your congregation, a seminary, Worship for Shut-Ins, etc. The ministry will pay no tax on the gift. You will receive a charitable deduction for a portion of the gift. And the gift will produce a guaranteed annual income payout to you for life. When the Lord calls you home, the ministry will benefit. As we think about outreach and mission, we can contemplate the gifts of the Lord and put them to use in support of ministry, that generations after us will come to know Jesus for their salvation. If I can help you joyfully manage the Lord’s gifts, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-840-3202.
Mr. Steve Strauch
Milestones to the Move With the recent closings on the sale of two properties—100 S. Chauncey Hill and 460 Northwestern Avenue—#ULuOnTheMove is moving forward at a rapid pace. This month, we honor the ministry at the former Chauncey Hill location and look forward to construction and renovations at the new location, now officially the University Lutheran Building, at 460 Northwestern Avenue. As the project moves forward, please note the following updated timeline, marking milestones toward making this expanded ministry a reality. May 13—Open house at Chauncey Hill Join us at your convenience any time from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. as we celebrate the ministry at Chauncey Hill. May 14—Three special services at Chauncey Hill on Commencement Day Services begin at 10:30 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m. to accommodate Purdue’s commencement program. Make plans to stay after the service of your choice for a brief reception, where you can reminisce with family and friends. June 4—Decommissioning service at Chauncey Hill Summer months—Reclamation and remodeling Mid August—New building dedication September—Coffee house opens October—Fellowship hall completed