Northeastern Minnesota Synod
Online Reflections
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week of January 31, 2016  
Bishop's Online Reflections
The Center for Changing Lives Duluth -Update
I am proud of the way in which our synod has supported Lutheran Social Services Center for Changing Lives in Duluth for homeless youth. The good work to prepare for this ministry and to build the Center has been done and construction is slated to begin this summer. Many of you have seen the cardboard boxes in your narthex and have participated in teaching about youth homelessness in general and especially in our synod. Folks in our congregations have utilized the Bible study LSS and Luther Seminary Professors created to better understand the Biblical and theological understanding of youth homelessness. You have taken special offerings and this has moved the project along admirably! 
I will continue to give each year to this worthy ministry and I hope you will too. I have talked seriously for the last couple of years, when this dream first got started, about having our staff move into the LSS new building when it is completed. As time went on we all came to realize that the square footage that was left for our staff was too little and the cost per square foot ended up too high to be practical for us. I have assured our LSS partners that we will fully participate in continued support, but that they need to search for another tenant to partner with them in the space allotted. This reality in no way diminishes our commitment to the Center, I assured our partners at LSS. 
Thanks for living into God's generous love and grace - and for your continued support.

+Bishop Aitken

2016 Bishop's Convocation

Lutherans: Reformed and Reforming - an educational offering for the entire Northeastern Minnesota Synod as we gear up to the 500th Anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation.

There will be two identical opportunities to attend this year's Bishop's Convocation:

Saturday, April 2, 2016 from 1-4 pm 
at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Hibbing
Sunday, April 3, 2016 from 2-5 pm 
at First Lutheran Church, Aitkin

Keynote Speaker: Bishop David Zellmer, South Dakota Synod
"How the Heck Did We Get to the Reformation?"

Lutheran Church of the Cross Receives Grant for Local Energy Project

Nisswa, MN, Thursday, January 7, 2016 - It is an energizing New Year for Lutheran Church of the Cross in Nisswa who received a $5,900 Seed Grant from the Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) today. The organization will use the grant for their 7.56 kW Ground-Mount PV System Project.

"We're very excited to learn about the grant award," said Craig Fink and Paula West. "We can't wait to get started on our 7.56 kW Ground-Mount PV System Project."

Lutheran Church of the Cross (LCC), Nisswa, Minnesota, will install a 7.56 kW ground-mounted photovoltaic system producing 9,615 kWhs annually to save 10% on its electric bill. Located on State Highway 371, the project will be a highly visible renewable energy demonstration project for the community, who use the church as an outreach center, and thousands of seasonal visitors to the Brainerd Lakes area. The project was conceived of and led by LCC's Creation Care Team to meet the church's eco-spirituality mission to lead by example in pursuing justice and sustainability for creation through individual and community action, learning, and advocacy.

The award is one of 39 grants given to innovative renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in communities across Minnesota. These awards mark the eighth round of Seed Grants from the group, totalling over $1 million to 269 projects since 2006. A complete list of funded projects can be accessed at

"CERTs provides these Seed Grants with two primary objectives in mind," said Lissa Pawlisch, CERTs Director. "First, to encourage implementation of community-based clean energy projects across the state. Second, to provide an educational forum for energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and their economic, community, and ecological benefits."

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Online Reflections Editor

Anne Laechel

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