Message from Bishop Gronberg
Dear Partners in Mission:
This past weekend I had the distinct pleasure of being with the people of Beautiful Savior, Amarillo, as they celebrated 75 years of ministry. It was a joy to be with them and also many of our Panhandle Conference leaders at the dinner Saturday night. The collegiality of the Panhandle Conference is excellent and they take seriously the gift it is to be able to gather together.
Celebrating the history of our congregations is a gift. Our history is important. As Bishop Mike Girlinghouse reminded us at our 2021 online assembly the past can be a strength for us, if it reminds us that God has been and will continue to be faithful. But it also, if misunderstood, can become an anchor that weighs us down and keeps us from moving forward. It is also very important that when we do these celebrations the focus doesn’t become an idealized version of the past but we are honest that it has always been a challenge to be the church in the world.
As Lutheran Christians our heritage of faith and our witness is always focused on what God is doing for us. How God is acting to provide our daily bread, sustain us by the power of the Spirit, and sending us forth to proclaim good news. Good news that in the cultural Christianity of our time too often comes with a “but” or an “if.” We proclaim a God who loves God’s world and the people in it without ands, ifs, or buts. God loves, provides, and sustains because that is who we know God to be. That is the God of scripture and that is the God we have experienced.
For 75 years God has sustained the community of Beautiful Savior. There have been ups and downs but as we celebrated I invited them to look forward. To 2097 when they will celebrate their 150th anniversary. On that occasion many of us won’t be there, but by God’s grace we pray the month old baby carried by her daddy into worship will be. The generations come and go; the message of the good news and its outcome are eternal.
In Mission Together,
Bishop Erik Gronberg
Book Study: Atlas of the Heart
You are invited to join Rev. Kelsey Fitting-Snyder (St. Matthew, Waco) and Jason O’Neill (Synod Communicator and ELCA Coach) for a 13-week (one chapter per week) book study on Dr. Brené Brown’s Atlas of the Heart: Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience on Tuesdays at 7pm Central, running October 4 – November 15 and January 10 – February 14. There is no charge to participate, and these will not be recorded. Advance registration required.
“If we want to find the way back to ourselves and one another, we need language and the grounded confidence to both tell our stories and to be stewards of the stories that we hear. In Atlas of the Heart, we explore eighty-seven of the emotions and experiences that define what it means to be human and walk through a new framework for cultivating meaningful connection. This is for the mapmakers and travelers in all of us.”
We are woven together | Estamos entrelazados
In her September column for Living Lutheran, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton writes: “In Christ we are individually members one of another. Sometimes we might feel like we are stuck with each other. This is the great mystery and beauty of the wounded body of Christ—we are woven together.” Read her column in English (We are woven together) o en español (Estamos entrelazados).
Featured Resources for September
The ELCA offers a place of welcome for all seeking a congregational home. Your congregation can extend an invitation to neighbors and the surrounding community through the use of these FREE and customizable communications tools. Download and use these free tools today:
Save the Date
NT-NL Youth Junior High & Senior High Youth Gathering
February 10-12, 2023
NT-NL Youth Leaders & Pastors,
We are excited to announce that we are collaborating to host a JUNIOR HIGH & SENIOR HIGH YOUTH GATHERING in February.
Recent Blog Posts
(https://www.ntnl.org/called-to-deliver-the-goods/ – published Sep. 21)
(https://www.ntnl.org/75-years-of-beautiful-savior-amarillo/ – published Sep. 26)
Where in the world is?
Across a context as wide and different as NT-NL, the reality of Covid-19 is very different. As such, NT-NL synod staff are doing more in-person Sunday visits for worship and occasional meetings. However, as good stewards of time and travel dollars, we will be utilizing online meeting formats into our new hybrid future. Given the rise of breakthrough infections and in order to protect those gathered, the synod staff will choose to wear masks as is deemed appropriate unless preaching or presiding and sufficient social distancing can be provided.
Sep. 28-Oct. 1: Conference of Bishops
Oct. 1: MEF Seeds That Change, Fort Worth and Dallas
Oct. 2: King of Glory, Dallas
Oct. 6: Lutheran Men in Mission annual board meeting, Online
Oct. 16: 75th Anniversary festivities, Calvary, San Angelo
Oct. 22: Memorial service for Dr. Peter Hendrickson, Augsburg College, Minneapolis, MN
Nov. 5: Memorial service for former Bishop Phil Wahlburg, Gethsemane, Austin
Nov. 13: Abiding Grace, Southlake
Sep. 26-28: First Call Pastors Retreat, Lutherhill, LaGrange
Oct. 1: Conference Out West meeting, Grace, Abilene
Oct. 9: Worship and call committee orientation, Christ the Servant, Allen
Oct. 22-23: Shreveport ministry conversation, Holy Trinity
Sep. 25-28: Stewardship Kaleidoscope Conference, Savannah, GA
Sep. 29: NT-NL Renewal Team meeting
With the ever-changing guidelines and recommendations in our world right now, as we maintain physical distance in social solidarity, please keep in mind these events may be moved online, postponed, or cancelled:
- Sep. 28: Courageous Leadership – TBA, Zoom
- Oct. 1: 2022 MEF Seeds That Change, Christ (Dallas) and Faith (Fort Worth)
- Oct. 5: Courageous Leadership – Coaching – Choose Your Own Adventure (breakout rooms by topic), Zoom
- Oct. 6: Transitional Pastors monthly meeting, Zoom
- Oct. 7-8: 2022 NTNL-SWO Fall Retreat, St. Matthew, Waco
- Oct. 7-9: Fall 2022 LMM National Bold Gathering, Ashland, Nebraska
- Oct. 8: Public Witness Team meeting, Zoom
- Oct. 12: Courageous Leadership – TBA, Zoom
- Oct. 15: Parish Lay Ministry Academy, Fall 2022, Course 2, Hybrid
- Oct. 17: Implicit Bias Training, Online
- Oct. 18: Implicit Bias Training, Online
- Oct. 19: Courageous Leadership – TBA, Zoom
- Oct. 26: Courageous Leadership – TBA, Zoom
- Oct. 30: The Tenth Annual Herbener Lecture: Becoming More Human Through Worship, Dallas
Access our full online Calendar here. Updates made regularly.
Do you have news or announcements to share? Please submit to Jason (firstname.lastname@example.org) for consideration for upcoming editions of our weekly news.