NEWSLETTER. ELEVA LUTHERAN CHURCH South 2nd Street Eleva, WI 54738

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1 CROSS ROADS NEWSLETTER ELEVA LUTHERAN CHURCH South 2nd Street Eleva, WI Pastor Bob Castro April 2018

2 CROSS+ROADS NEWSLETTER April 2018 ELEVA LUTHERAN CHURCH Webpage elevalc.org Office Hours: 8-1 Monday Thursday Dial-up Worship Pastor Bob Home: Pastor Bob Cell: Pastor Bob Or Council President Jon Zander Vice President Kris Monson Secretary Mary Berg Trustees: JoAnn Adams Bill Smith Dick Evenson Alyssa Hillestad Deacons: John Nelson Jesse Franck Jodi Mai Mary Steffenson Adam Zwiefelhofer Mike Lueloff From the Lion s den For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. Jeremiah 29:11 I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? Isaiah 43: 19 Dear Friends in Christ and Fellow Ministers, In my annual report I focused on the traits of the Church in the 21 Century: Hope, Courage, Trust and Truth. As we enter our 4th year together I want to go back 3 years and remind you of The Five to Thrive. As a reminder, in 2011 when I was preparing for a sabbatical time, I reviewed an article from the United Methodist Church. They had done a national study of the thriving congregations in their denomination. There was not a very large population, because there are not many that are thriving. But among those congregations in the UMC that are thriving, they found five characteristics that were in all of them. (They had other traits, of course, but all thriving congregations had these five.) st Here are the Five to Thrive. Active small groups and programs Activities geared toward youth Active lay leadership A mix of traditional and contemporary worship services An inspirational pastor who had served a longer tenure (7+ years) As we are heading to our celebration of 125 years as a congregation, leadership has one goal: to be a thriving congregation at our 150 th year and beyond. There are a number of changes that have taken place over the last 3 years. But I want to begin by lifting up what has not changed. First Sunday worship has remained intact over the past 3 years, as has third Sunday. It is important to have grounding, a stability that is as it ELCW President Vonnie Olson has been. Comfort level is not a bad thing (up to a point). But we are also moving forward. What does moving forward look like over the Sunday School Superintendent Kelly Tollefson-Oium past few years? 2

3 Active small groups and programs The Alpha Course has increased participation in our small groups, and has spawned others. This month we will be having a video Bible study group that will be very interesting. We will be gathering on Sunday evenings for a meal together. We will watch portions of the mini-series Peter and Paul, learning about The Book of Acts in the Bible. All are invited and welcome. Activities geared toward youth I am grateful to Andy and Kim Pedersen for chaperoning a YouthWorks Mission Trip to South Dakota this summer for our youth. Last year we had a great experience on the short-term mission trip to the country of Latvia. As I type this we are getting everything ready for an overnight retreat for high school students at Luther Park. Movie nights continue to take place to bring young people together around top run movies, and explore spiritual growth. This past year we began a program of Cross-Generational worship and Sunday school experiences to bring all generations together, engage our children in worship and multi-generational education, as a step to move our new Vision Statement forward to keep our children in the life of the church. Active lay leadership Our church family has benefited greatly from the Gift Inventories that have been taken by members over the past 3 years. The Alpha Course has also encouraged members to learn their spiritual gifts from God and use them in service and ministry. We have a Prayer Team, a Visitation Team, a CrossGen Team, in addition to the service groups that have existed for some time at ELC. My hope is that members will continue to take the Gift Inventory to learn their spiritual gifts and follow God s leading into service/ministry in God s call. God never gifts someone without the call to serve; God never calls anyone to serve without gifting that person to serve in God s work. A mix of traditional and contemporary worship services It s interesting and important to notice that thriving congregations were not those who have abandoned traditional worship for contemporary worship. Rather, they are the ones who have included contemporary worship along with their traditional worship services. When I came to ELC I was pleased that there was a praise band in place. Since then we have added two more bands: The Messengers to play today s worship music; and Mike s Ad Hoc band, who brings us back to Gaither Vocal Band down home picking and grinning (spiritual comfort food for those of us who are older). It is important that our first and third Sunday worship remain intact also comfort food. But it is also important to have a variety of worship styles and worship music. This too is worshiping God. BTW (by the way), the congregations in our conference are pretty amazed that a congregation our size has three praise bands. It is very unusual, and a great blessing. An inspirational pastor who had served a longer tenure (7+ years) This was a revolutionary finding in the UMC. Unlike the ELCA, UMC assigns pastors. There is no call process. And they had gotten into the pattern of playing musical chairs with pastors every 4 or 5 years. The Alban Institute has found that it is at about 7 years that the wheels are greased to increase momentum into the future. As a result of this finding, the UMC has backed off of its previous policies and left pastors in place where things are moving forward. 3

4 Moving forward. I reminded you in my annual report in February about the Comprehensive Ministry Review that was done at ELC last year. With our new Vision Statement in place we are positioned to move forward with some of the recommendations suggested in their final report. Most recently, our synod has invited us to participate in a series congregational coaching retreats taking place over the next 13 months to look forward. The invitation went out to congregations that have made positive change in the past several years, and are positioned to move confidently into the 21st Century. We are one of the congregations that our synod chose to invite. The first meeting is taking place right after our Easter Resurrection celebration. Forward. Hope, Courage, Trust, Truth. Yours and His, but not in that order, Pastor Bob CELEBRATION CORNER By Pastor Bob This is something new I m adding to our newsletter. It is a place where we can list celebrations such as milestones or accomplishments. This is your section. Feel free to call or Nancy with your celebration information, and she will put it here in the newsletter. Nancy Hansen s Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday helpers would like to say WELCOME BACK Nancy. You were missed! So good to have you and Guy back. Welcome Back Vacation Bible School at Eleva Lutheran The theme for Vacation Bible School will be BRAVE BELIEVERS. This will be a cross generation event and everyone of all ages is invited to participate. Vacation Bible School will begin on Sunday evening, June 10th, and will be held in the evening of that week. Please contact Pastor Castro with any questions. 4

5 Community Dinner... CHANGE OF DATE Due to Easter falling on the first Sunday of April, the Community Dinner will be held the second Sunday, April 8, from 5:00-6:00 p.m. The menu is: Ham, cheesy potatoes, green beans, bread, dessert, mike and coffee. If you can help with the meal or provide a dessert, please sign up on the bulletin board across from Pastor s office. Thank you to Connie Pedersen, Diane Hillestad and Julie Christ for last month s desserts. ******************************************************************************************************* A NEW SERVICE AT ELEVA LUTHERAN We have become aware of problems using the elevator. That, along with the many stair steps to enter our Church, has caused us to consider a way to hopefully alleviate this. There is a person available to help with the elevator operation 15 minutes prior to our 9:00 a.m. service and 15 minutes following our worship service on Sunday mornings. Also, there is an in-house wheelchair, an aluminum and a four-wheel walker by the elevator for your use. Please help us spread this good news to others! Jubilate Deo Spring Church Choir Festival Thank you to the people who have offered to help with this service. We could use just a couple more volunteers. Please give Duke a call at if you would like to help. Thank YOU. Eleva Lutheran Sunday, April 15 6:00 p.m. Huge thank you for all the Easter Lilies for our Easter morning worship celebration! Extra beauty on a joyous morning. Church Choirs & Bell Choirs from the Northwest Synod of Wisconsin will be participating. Everyone Welcome! 5

6 NOTES FROM THE CHOIR DIRECTOR Mark your calendars for Sunday, April 8. New Sounds will be leading the worship music which will consist of Country Gospel music. We frequently receive requests for this kind of music and there are alot of great Easter songs that are Country Gospel so it will give us a chance to do some of those. We are also preparing a new piece of special music called, Glory Bound. Thank you to all of you that donated items to be auctioned off and items for the bake sale. We would also like to thank all of you who purchased items from the auction and bake sale. The fundraiser brought in over $1,550. To date between donations and fundraisers we have raised about $2,000 toward new choir gowns. Our goal is to raise about $1,700 more. Your continued support of music at Eleva Lutheran is greatly appreciated. The annual Music Appreciation Dinner for Partners In Praise, New Sounds, and the Klinge Kor will be held at Buzz s in Mondovi on Wednesday, April 25. Thank you to the congregation for funding this event. Please join us for the Jubilate Choral Festival on Sunday, April 15 at 6 pm. Choirs from multiple churches from the Northwest Synod of Wisconsin will be joining us for an evening of great music and fellowship. Each choir will share two of their favorite songs with us. The combined voices of all the choirs will join in singing two songs which will be directed by Jeanette Tobiason. This should be a wonderful service of music. Jody Eleva Lutheran Church Women Dear Friends in Christ, Our regular meeting is scheduled for Thursday, April 12, at 1:00 p.m. Betty Johnson and I will be your hostesses and serve a lunch before the business meeting and short program. The prayer meeting will be at noon and all are welcome. Bring your concerns and we will pray for them. Plans are pretty much set for the pie social at the Eleva Broiler Fest for June 1-3. Please plan to bring a pie and include the recipe if you would like to share it. We will plan to bake pies on Thursday morning, May 31, The Dairyland Conference Morning of Renewal is being hosted by our Sisters at Black River Falls Lutheran Church on Wednesday, April 18th. The offices of President and Secretary will be voted on. The featured speaker will be Janet Martin as you may remember from Basement Church Women. For reservations, please call Sylvia Nesja at , as she will take care of our reservations. Registration should be made prior to April 11th for $8.00. The price will be $10.00 after that date. It should be an inspiration event. EASTER BLESSING! Your Servant in Him, Vonnie 6

7 Eleva Lutheran Church Years! As you have been reading about the 125th anniversary is scheduled for Sunday, May 6th. Final plans are being worked on and please watch the bulletins, website and other forms of advertising during the month of April. Unfortunately, even with the electronic changes over the past 125 years, it is impossible for us to send a personal invitation to all the people who have ever been a part of Eleva Lutheran over the years. Therefore, we are asking you to help spread the word and invite family and friends (people married, baptized, confirmed, etc. etc. at Eleva Lutheran) to join in our celebration. Another celebration day for our 125th anniversary is Sunday, June 3rd. We will have a PEOPLE float in the Eleva Broiler Fest parade. We are inviting everyone of all ages to be a part of our float. Some will ride and some will walk. Once again watch for final details during the month of April. Looking forward to having you join us on May 6 & June 3 for our 125th celebrations. Church Council One Joyful Cleaning Crew! THANK YOU Arlene Barneson, Vivian Hayden, Barb Peterson, Connie Pedersen, Sandy Teigen, Carlene Schultz, Diane Hillestad, Arleen Prissel, Sue Rotvold & Gail Carlson (not pictured) for your good work of cleaning the church sanctuary. 7

8 CROSS+ROADS COMMUNIQUE 2018 April 1: Easter Communion Service 7:00 a.m. & 9:30 a.m. April 1: Easter Brunch 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. April 8: New Sounds April 8: Free Community Dinner 5:00-6:00 p.m. April 8: Pastor Castro Presentation at 6:30 p.m. April 15: Jubilate Deo Spring Choir Festival 6:00 p.m. at Eleva Lutheran April 25: Music Appreciation Dinner April 29: First Communion for Fifth Grade Class May 6: 125th Celebration with Bishop Hoyme speaking and potluck lunch. May 6: Free Community Dinner 5:00-6:00 p.m. May 20: Confirmation Sunday May 31: ELCW Pie Baking Day June 1 3: ELCW Pie Social June 3: People Float for the Broiler Fest Parade June 10: Vacation Bible School Begins June 24: Luther Park Bible Camp Week July 15: Youth Works Mission Trip The Eleva Lutheran Prayer Chain is available for anyone that would like to have a prayer said in strong faith with our Eleva Women. Please call Vonnie Olson at to make your request. Prayer is a powerful thing and these ladies have been serving Eleva Lutheran for many years with thousands of prayers. Keep the Prayer Patrol working for our families. They do such a great job. Thank you. MISSION STATEMENT "We are a community of believers called and inspired by Christ's love, sharing God's gifts through worship, teaching, service, and fellowship. We seek with joy God's vision of uniting all people in Christ through faith." 8

9 Please Join Pastor Bob Sunday evening, April 8th at 6:30 p.m. at Church I have spoken frequently, but too briefly, about the impact of the seismic shift that has occurred in our culture, and how greatly it has impacted church life. I have shared a bit on the challenges of being the Church in the 21st Century. But this topic is absolutely essential to moving forward as The Body of Christ in our culture. So on the Sunday following Easter, on April 8th at 6:30 in the evening, please consider joining me in the worship space for a discussion of where we find ourselves and what following Jesus now looks like. My tag line for this presentation is: "Where the heck are we? How the heck did we get here? And what the heck do we do now?" The Impact of Postmodernism on the Church in the 21st Century. All are invited to this presentation with Q&A and discussion to follow. Pastor Bob STEWARDSHIP NEWS by Betty Johnson During the months of April and May we will be joining the Lutheran World Relief s Baskets of Promise campaign. There will be a table in the narthex for you to place your donated items. The items for the Baskets of Promise are: 2 to 3 Bars of Soap, 4 5 oz. any brand Bath Towels, 52 x 27 dark color Toothbrushes, adult size in original package Large Combs Nail Clippers, metal Many, many thanks for your donation. Our regularly scheduled Stewardship Sewing Day will be April 24th from 9:00-1:00 p.m. with a potluck lunch. Everyone is welcome. Please come and join us this month. The supply of Eleva Lutheran sweatshirts and t-shirts has been replenished in case you were looking and we were missing your size. There is also coffee mugs available. Questions or requests please contact Jon Zander at or the church office at

10 APRIL 2018 Sun 1 Happy Easter Holy Communion Worship Service 7:00 am and 9:30 a.m. Easter Breakfast Worship with New Sounds 9:00 a.m. Sunday School 10:15 am Mon 2 Council Meeting 6:30 p.m. Tue Wed 3 Pastors Text Study 9:30 a.m. Osseo 4 No Choir or Klinge Kor 8th Grade Confirmation 3:45 p.m. 9th Grade Confirmation 7:00 p.m Klinge Kor 6:15 p.m. Choir 7:30 p.m. 8th Grade Confirmation 3:45 p.m. 9th Grade Confirmation 7:00 p.m. 12 ELCW meeting at 1:00 p.m. 125th Planning 6:30 p.m Pastors Text Study 9:30 a.m. Osseo Community Dinner 5-6 Pastor Presentation 6:30 15 Worship Service 9:00 a.m. (Choir) Sat 6 7 Knitting and Crochet Group 10:00 a.m. at Church Step Group annual potluck gathering. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. in Fellowship Hall New Sounds Practice at 6:30 p.m. Step Group 7:00 p.m. Step Group 7:00 p.m. 17 Pastors Text Study 9:30 a.m. Osseo Worship Committee Meeting at 6:30 p.m. 18 Klinge Kor 6:15 p.m. Choir 7:30 p.m. 8th Grade Confirmation 3:45 p.m. 9th Grade Confirmation 7:00 p.m. 19 Step Group 7:00 p.m. 20 Charity Circle 1:00 p.m. with Connie Pederson 21 Food Pantry Distribution 2-5 p.m. Immanuel Lutheran Strum Pastor s Text Study 9:30 a.m. Osseo Stewardship Sewing 9-1 p.m. potluck 25 Music Appreciation Supper at 5:30 p.m. 8th Grade Confirmation 3:45 p.m. 9th Grade Confirmation 7:00 p.m. 26 Lydia Circle 7:00 p.m. with Chris Smith Julilate Deo Choir Festival at 6:00 p.m. Cross + Roads Deadline 29 5th Grade First Communion Worship Service 9:00 am Sunday School 10:15 am Fri 16 Sunday School 10:15 am 22 Worship Service 9:00 am Messengers Sunday School 10:15 am Thu 30 Step Group 7:00 p.m.