Northeastern Minnesota Synod
Online Reflections
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week of November 6, 2016
Post-Election Pastoral Letter
To the Northeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA
+Bishop Thomas M. Aitken
(You are given permission to use this letter at worship or other times in your congregation)
As people who have been granted the gift of faith through our Lord Jesus Christ, we have been and are being transformed by grace each day.  We, who are baptized into Christ's death and resurrection, are called to lift high the cross and the light of God's unconditional love and to live as witnesses to the healing power of God in the world;  For all people, no exceptions.  We know this is so needed in our country right now.  And it's about more than just our country.  In the global village we live in today, what happens in one country, affects the rest of the world, just as we have discovered when it comes to the planet itself.  God has given us a beautiful world and empowers us to be responsible stewards for it, granting us space to make decisions and take actions about how we will live together.  Will our response be one of continued business as usual, complete with long standing polarities, backbiting and bitterness, or will we, by God's grace, make it a time for careful personal scrutiny about our personal lives and how we can be part of a new day, for all people?  Can we live into repentance, the joy of the gospel, and new life?  (Repentance, remember means going beyond the mind set you currently have.)
A prayer to help us take our own "inventory"
"God, our refuge and strength, you have bound us together in a common life.  In all our conflict, help us to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, to listen for your voice amid competing claims, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord."  -Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Pastoral Care book, p. 386
It starts with this truth:  God loves you and your neighbor, everywhere. We belong to God and each other.   God will not be stingy in granting us the gifts we need to live out God's purpose in the days, weeks and months ahead as beloved children of God and servants of one another.  We can take this opportunity, this "slice of life" post-election reality here in this country, to live out the loving and redemptive life of Jesus, who lives within us.  After all, he is Lord of Lords, the Prince of Peace, and our final authority. God wants to use you in the ministry of reconciliation, as St. Paul reminds us: "All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation" (2 Corinthians 5:18)
You belong.  You are cherished.
Be used, to the Glory of God and the good of your neighbor.
 +Bishop Thomas M. Aitken
Bulletin Board

Join leaders from across this church for the Rostered Ministers Gathering - the first of its kind. This event will be an opportunity for all rostered ministers from across this church to assemble for worship, education and fellowship under the theme "On the Way...Together."
Two pre-events will allow time for federal chaplains and young rostered ministers (20s and 30s) to gather and network.
Registration will open on March 1, 2017. 
Please visit in the coming months for details, speakers and more.

Questions? Contact us at [email protected].

Bishop's Visitation to Confirmation Students and their parents

Bishop Aitken invites you to request him for a Bishop's Visitation to your Confirmation Class.  What works best for his schedule is to do these Visitations to clusters of congregations. He encourages parents to come that night as well so he can meet them and include them in the teaching time. He will teach the gospel, talk about Christian Vocation, the role of the Christian in our world, our call in Christ and end with Communion and Commissioning for service with Anointing oil from Palestine.
Synod Creation Care Study Available
Earth Stewardship and the Missio Dei: Participating in the Care and Redemption of All God Has Madeis the title of Pastor David Carlson's Doctor of Ministry dissertation, which he defended at Luther Seminary in March 2016 and is making available to more readers. In it, he reports findings from a synod-wide survey and four congregational interviews and evaluates their earthkeeping practices and perceptions using eight conceptual lenses: (1) sustainability, (2) globalization, (3) global civil society, (4) nature as an active subject in scripture and liturgy, (5) biblical stewardship as participating in God's mission, (6) perichoresis as modeling reciprocal relationships with nature, (7) eschatological themes of redemption and reformation, and (8) sacramental imagination.
The church in general and Lutherans in particular are well-suited to help society address ecological needs and the problems of climate change, and congregations are ideal settings for modeling the kind of earth stewardship needed for a more sustainable world. This timely resource invites clergy and lay leaders to grow in understanding their local earth stewardship as a component of participating in God's mission, and take steps to integrate creation care practically in ministry areas of worship, education, congregational life, building and grounds, and community engagement.
Signed copies are available in paperback (243 pp.) for $10 payable to Pastor Carlson at the Gloria Dei Lutheran Church office located at the synod office building, lower level, or at mailing address 219 N. 6thAve. E., Duluth, MN 55805. To ship in the U.S., add $4.
Events Around the Synod

If you would like to have your event included, please send a brief press release, including the Who, What, Where, When & Why of your event, in an email to [email protected]
No PDF flyers please
. Only the text information will be included.

Trinity Lutheran Church Fall Boutique and Bake Sale
Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
Lunch served in Doug's Café 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
1420 South 6th Street, Brainerd, MN.

Gloria Dei, Duluth WELCA Fall Fair
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church Women are hosting a Fall Fair at Saint Mary's Star of the Sea, 325 E 3rd St on Saturday, November 12, 2016, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Bake Sale, Country Store, Artisan Crafts, Fashion Tag Sale, Quilt Raffle. Coffee & goodies, Chili, Soups & Sloppy Joes Served at11 a.m. You are invited; Please Come!

Turkey Bingo - French River Lutheran Church, Duluth
Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 5:30-7:30 PM
5310 Ryan Rd., Duluth, MN 55804
Questions? Contact 218.525.5659 or [email protected]
All proceeds will be directed to Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank to assist neighbors in need. Bingo boards are $.25 each with "grand prize" boards $1.00 each. Bring a non-perishable item for a local food shelf and receive one $.25 board (one board per player for the evening). Food is available for purchase (sloppy joe & chips, nachos/cheese, desserts, pop, coffee). Prizes donated by area businesses and church members. Join us for an evening of fun, food, and fellowship!

Keep Your Headlights - On Respectful Care for People Living with Depression, Anxiety & Addiction at End-of-Life
Spiritual Companions 2016 - A gift of thanks for your partnership in care
Presenter is Dr. Katherine Piderman who has contributed to several projects related to excellence in pastoral care and has served in ministerial roles in parishes and in medical facilities (currently at the Mayo Clinic). Please register by November 9 sent to the person listed in the brochure for each site. Please contact Pr. Craig Carlson at [email protected] for a copy of the brochure.
November 14, 2016 
- Virginia, MN Messiah Lutheran Church 8590 Enterprise Dr. S Virginia, MN
November 15, 2016 - Grand Rapids, MN Sawmill Inn 2301 S Hwy 169 Grand Rapids, MN 
November 16, 2016 - Duluth, MN St. Mary's Medical Center Auditorium 407 E 3rd Street Duluth, MN

National Healthy Lunch Day at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Duluth
On Tuesday, November 15, we will participate in the American Diabetes Association's National Healthy Lunch Day. To celebrate National Healthy Lunch Day, the Health Ministry team has planned a free Healthy Lunch sponsored by the Parish Nurse Medica Foundation Grant. Please join us for a Healthy Lunch served in the Fellowship Hall from 11:30-1pm. (4831 Grand Ave. Duluth, MN)
Why is National Healthy Lunch Day so important? Most of us are uncertain about what's best to eat...what's healthful and what's not. Often our food choices are full of calories, yet lack nutritional value, which contributes to rising rates of diabetes, heart disease and obesity-related illnesses nationwide. Our wellness goal is to promote good nutrition as part of a healthy lifestyle, and help everyone make better food choices. To start, let's do lunch---a healthy lunch.
To learn more about National Healthy Lunch Day, visit

One Voice Mixed Chorus' Hand in Hand Tour Rolls Into Northeast Minnesota!
Who: One Voice Mixed Chorus: Minnesota's LGBTQA Community Chorus
What: One Voice, in conjunction with Minnesota Public Radio, is excited to announce that its 14th annual outreach tour, Hand in Hand, is making stops in Ely, Mountain Iron, and Duluth this November. This year's program includes selections from our upcoming winter concert, Out of the Shadows, a tribute to African-American artists and activists. We'll also share a sneak preview of our brand-new commission, The Man Behind the Dream, which tells the story of openly gay civil rights activist, Bayard Rustin.
Where: Ely, Mountain Iron, and Duluth, Minnesota
When: Friday, November 18 - Sunday, November 20, 2016
Tickets: Concerts are FREE and open to the public. Call 651.298.1954 or visit for more information.
Lessons & Carols Festival 2016 - Gethsemane Lutheran, Virginia
Sunday, December 4th, at 6 pm, at Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Virginia. Begin your Christmas season with an evening of glorious music and scripture performed by local choirs and music groups, followed by Christmas Cookies, Coffee & Conversation for everyone in the fellowship hall.
Annual LUTEFISK/MEATBALL DINNER - Gethsemane Lutheran, Virginia
Tuesday, December 6th, 3:00 pm-7:00 pm. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children ages 6-12. Children 5 and under are free.
Greece: In the Footsteps of Paul the Apostle - Gethsemane Lutheran, Virginia
Sep. 27-Oct. 7, 2017 - Next year, you are invited to join a handful of people from the Iron Range on a visit to Greece!  We will visit cities that Saint Paul visited, including: Athens, Corinth, Thessaloniki, Philippi, Ephesus (in Turkey) and the island of Crete. If you would like a brochure that details the trip, please ask Pastor Nathan Sager ([email protected], 218-741-4961).

Employment Opportunities

NE MN Synod's School of Lay Ministry Coordinator
The Northeastern MN Synod's School of Lay Ministry Advisory Board is now accepting applications for the position of SLM Coordinator. Requirements: Must have completed the 2 year SLM program, good organizational & communication skills,work with the Advisory Board and attend 2 Advisory Board meetings, plan & host 2 yearly retreats, keep track of student progress & payments, order materials, promote & recruit students for the School of Lay Ministry at various Synod events. Modest stipend. Interested persons may send a Letter of Intent along with a resume to Brenda Tibbetts, Assistant to the Bishop, 1105 E. Superior St., Duluth, MN 55802. Please include the date of completion of the SLM program.
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Staff Listing
Phone: 218.724.4424
Brenda Tibbetts, AiM - 122
  Assistant to the Bishop
  Call process
   Youth Ministry 
 Kathy Wimer - 126
Tammy Segel-Crilly - 127
   Communications/Office Support

1105 E. Superior St.,
Upper Suite
Duluth, MN  55802

FAX: 218.724.4393    
Online Reflections Editor

Anne Laechel

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