Saturday Nov 9th was a busy day across NT-NL Synod, ELCA and for the office of the bishop. I began the day in Austin and headed down to San Antonio for the Lutheran Men In Mission BOLD gathering at Zion, San Antonio. This congregation, founded over 100 years ago, has seen the growth of San Antonio come towards it and now has grown to be one of the largest ELCA parishes in Texas. It was good to see the Senior Pastor Dave Schulte again. I have known him for many years and he gave me a quick tour of the facility. We remarked together of the constant challenges of maintaining and improving facilities as they age. We are grateful for their hospitality.
I was asked to begin the gathering which was live streamed across the nation to Men in Mission groups. It is a wonderful opportunity to share our learning together. I spoke about the theme “Sons of Abraham” based on Galatians 3. I talked about the gift of being claimed. That Gods promise comes first. A promise given that cannot be revoked. And that when we grasp that promise is given then we can respond with trust. Trust that enables us to stand against oppression as the Liepzig prayer groups did that helped lead to the Nov 9, 1989 fall of the Berlin Wall. But also we must be humble in understanding the claim on us so that we do not exclude others. As too many German Christians did on Nov 9, 1938, the night of Kristallnacht. When synagogues and Jewish businesses were destroyed in part fueled by a theology of superseccionism and anti-Semitism. Understanding we are claimed we then can live for others in service.
We also heard from leaders of relief efforts led by LMM in the Virgin Islands. Practical ways we serve.
All throughout the day Briarwood was being highlighted at the Thrivent Cooking for Christ event at the Texas Legends basketball game. We are grateful for the opportunity to highlight Briarwood to a wide audience and for Thrivent’s partnership.
I left San Antonio and picked up my youngest at my parents house. We then popped by Our Savior, Norse for their 71st annual Smorgasbord. A lovely time for all and a chance to enjoy some fellowship and meet with the folks of Bosque County. I always enjoy this time and grateful for the invitation.
On the way north from Norse we encountered one of the potential road hazards of this time of year. A buck with a growing rack of antlers crossed our path less than a quarter mile from the church. While my kiddo got a thrill being so close it reminded me of vigilant driving this time of year on country roads. 650 #milesandmiles of Texas this weekend so far. Veterans day remembrances tomorrow. Please give thanks to all the Veterans in your community and support our ELCA federal chaplains. Fundraiser for Campus Ministry in Denton tomorrow night at Briarwood. 4pm. Come join us! #NTNL #BWTX #LutheranMeninMission #ZionHelotes #OSLCNorse #InMissionTogether