Come celebrate the beginning of another year of learning, growth, and fellowship at our Back-to-School Block Party on Friday, September 16, 4-6 p.m., right before the first RFS session! We will be located by OCC. Food will be free and catered by Nelson’s Deli. Gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, and vegan options are available. This will be a great opportunity to connect with new and old friends. Let’s start this school year well with friends, games, and free food!
Archives for August 2022
Welcome to Contextual Learning – Emily Rova-Hegener
Today we welcome Emily Rova-Hegener. Emily is an ELCA pastor who has served in a variety of ministry contexts (locally and globally) since graduating from Luther Seminary in 1999. Emily is joining the Contextual Learning Team and will serve as interim contextual learning associate for the coming year. Emily looks forward to journeying with many of our internship students (and their supervisors) and will bring her gifts in spiritual formation to their internship retreats in the fall and the spring (serving Region 1 and 3 of the ELCA).
Emily’s office is in Bockman Hall 242. Please stop by and say hello! Welcome, Emily!
God Pause for August 24: Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16
In this devotion, Wayne Kendrick ’72 M.Div. writes about allowing the Spirit to use challenging portions of Scripture to shape us. Read today’s God Pause.
God Pause for August 23: Psalm 112
In this devotion, Wayne Kendrick ’72 M.Div. reflects on the legacy each of us leaves. Read today’s God Pause.
What’s Next In Church Funding? Help Us Figure It Out.
Grace Pomroy and her research team are researching alternative funding models for congregations and they would appreciate your help!
Congregations across the country are realizing that the “Sunday morning offering” may not be enough to sustain their mission. For nearly two years, Grace has worked with seminary students in her “Funding Forward” course to learn from congregations and faith-based nonprofits that are finding and experimenting with more economically sustainable models for ministry that are deeply connected with God’s mission for their organization. These models include specific tools like repurposing church property, social enterprise, grants, and more. While the tools and finalized models can spark creativity, congregational leaders often wonder what process they might use to discern God’s mission, which tools to try, and how they might get other congregational leaders on board.
Grace is building upon her prior learnings by researching the process ministry leaders have used to discern and implement these models so other leaders can follow in their footsteps.
She would appreciate your help in identifying any congregations that you believe might qualify for the survey. The congregations she is looking for are U.S.- or Canada-based and fit into one or more of the categories below:
- Experimenting with and/or using at least one consistent income source outside of tithes and offerings that is aligned with their mission. These income sources might include, but are not limited to:
- Repurposing or selling ministry property
- Generating consistent income through space rental
- Receiving grants from the government, nonprofits, or foundations outside of the congregation’s denomination or judicatory
- Using crowdfunding or other traditional fundraising methods to raise monetary support from outside of the congregation’s membership
- Receiving corporate sponsorships
- Repurposing endowment funds for ministry, not just to balance the budget
- Experimenting with and/or implementing a method of reducing the congregation’s budget. These reduction methods might include, but are not limited to:
- Utilizing creative staffing models like shifting from a full time minister to a bivocational or part-time minister
- Selling ministry property or sharing ministry property with another congregation
- Experimenting with and/or creating an entirely self-sustaining ministry (i.e. a cafe ministry of the church that doesn’t rely on any funding from the congregation to sustain itself).
BONUS: She is especially interested in ministries who have shifted their economic model in the past 10 years.
She would be grateful for any and all suggestions you can offer. Please use this Google Form to share your ministry site suggestions by Friday, August 31. Fill out one form for each site suggestion. If you have more than five sites you would like to suggest, please email Grace Pomroy at firstname.lastname@example.org and she can find a more expedient way for you to share your suggestions. Have questions or know of someone else Grace should be in touch with about this topic? Please email her at email@example.com.
Grace looks forward to sharing her findings with the Luther Seminary community once the research project is complete.
P.S. – Curious to learn more about funding forward and see examples of the types of ministries Grace is looking for? Check out this article!
God Pause for August 22: Proverbs 25:6-7
What does it mean not to exalt yourself in the king’s presence? Wayne Kendrick ’72 M.Div. thinks about how these verses apply to our daily lives. Read today’s God Pause.