NALC – Marriage Law and Protection of Religious Liberty Guidelines

The NALC published “Marriage Law and the Protection of Religious Liberty” following the Supreme Court’s ruling on gay marriage.
The announcement on the NALC site can be found here.
The PDF of the document is here.

On Sunday, April 21 the NALC Eastern SD Mission District Gathering was held in Brookings.  Some LCMC churches were also represented.  The meeting was hosted by Pastor Patterson and the Pioneer Lutheran  Church of White.  He is also on staff at the Institute of Lutheran Theology (ILT), the online seminary based in Brookings. 

Theme was “Mission in our Midst.”  One of the agenda items was “Mission Congregation Development and Campus Ministry.”   There is no NALC or LCMC Church in Brookings; the closest one is Pioneer Lutheran Church.   Pastor Bob Chell of the Lutheran Campus Ministry at SDSU has resigned, and the future of that ELCA ministry is uncertain.   Pioneer Lutheran Church of White, South Dakota would like to see a new mission congregation formed in Brookings.  The Old Sanctuary facility where the meeting was held, would be available for use as a worship center, and also for a new campus ministry. Pioneer would like other congregations to join them in a NALC / LCMC partnership to form a new congregation in Brookings.  Those in attendance were encouraged to bring the information back to their congregations.

ILT continues to do a great job of providing theological education to its students wherever they live. In the future, it is hoped that the direction of ILT may be expanded  to include “pastoral formation”, perhaps some opportunities for internship ministry, etc. in the area.  It would be seen as an “embedded ministry” within the ILT.  Continued financial support is needed and encouraged.

Representatives of the South Sudanese Lutheran Church were present. They formed a new nation in 2011, when they broke away from Sudan.   Needs were highlighted, including financial support to finish their  church building, provide adequate health care, education, etc.  People come to worship and sit on the floor, since there are no chairs or pews in the church.   Most churches there are built as huts.  There are about 32 congregations in South Sudan; only about 130 medical doctors; about 100 miles of paved roads in the country; and lack of education is a big issue, with only about 16% of girls enrolled in school.  The Lutheran Church in South Sudan is part of the global mission outreach of the NALC.
 
Pastor Randy Eisenbeisz, Dean of the Eastern SD Mission District, conducted the NALC business meeting.  The treasurer’s report was given by Pastor Gene Peterson.
 
The meeting began and ended with times of worship.  In his concluding message, Pastor Patterson spoke of our terminal illness today of selective hearing  and hearing loss, especially in terms of not wanting to hear the call of Jesus to “feed my sheep” in whatever way he calls us to do so.

–Shirley Skoglund

The Festival of Easter has recently been celebrated, and we continue to live in that Easter joy!  May the Easter message fill each one of you with new hope in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
April is a month of anticipation as we await the sight of plants coming to life again, green grass, and the sight of farmers working their fields. This truly is “My Father’s World!”

Pictures from Pastor Pete’s last day at Trinity and Badger can be found here.