OWLs' potluck tomorrow at noon!

For the September potluck, Brian and Mary Narveson would like to invite all the OWLs to their home at W7572 Price Ct. in Holmen (Holland) at noon on Wednesday, September 20. We are praying for a beautiful day where everyone can gather on the deck overlooking the Mississippi River Valley. For our program, we will focus on another type of storytelling. Mary has been a writer and fan of poetry for many years. She will share some of her favorite poems, but we also ask everyone to bring a favorite poem of yours to share with the group. It can be anything from a poem you have written, a favorite Psalm or a poem that has touched you. If you need directions to the Narvesons’, they can be contacted at 608.526.9700 or owls@firstlu.org. Many older GPS units do not know where Price Ct. is, but Google Maps can print you an excellent map. They will be glad to email you a map on request.

The OWLs are a group at First that welcomes anyone, First Lutheran members or not, who are 55+. For information or to ask questions, contact Brian Narveson.

Sympathy to the family & friends of Rev. Paul Roe

We lift in prayer the family and friends of Rev. Paul Roe, who died September 11, 2017, in Bloomington, MN. The funeral will be on Saturday, September 16th, at 11 AM, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 4100 Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, MN. Visitation on Friday, 6-8:30 PM at the church and one hour prior to service. If so desired, memorials may be directed to the Paul Roe Scholarship Fund at Luther Seminary, Lutheran World Relief, or St. Olaf College. Condolences can be shared at gillbrothers.com.

Message From Pastor Karyn for September 2017

What does it mean to live “By Heart”? This has been the question that has been rolling around my head, framing my experiences for the last few months as we prepare for this 500th anniversary of the reformation. If we are always being re-formed, as is the characteristic of the Lutheran church, how are we doing that? Re-formation requires the heart to be involved, along with the mind and the soul. Jesus tells us, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Mark Allen Powell would say if we want to change our heart, change where your treasure is—teach your heart something different. So what does it mean to live “By Heart”? Does it mean that I am a “bleeding heart” or that I have a “hard heart”? Does it mean I give all my money and worldly goods away? Does it mean I am fickle or stubborn? As I ponder these questions that stem from my original question of what this means, I realize that none of these are going to get me to the, pardon the pun, heart of the matter. Instead, I turn to Jesus once again as I consider what it means to live “By Heart”: love. More specifically, love God and love neighbor and love neighbor as you do yourself (which was recently pointed out to me that we leave that part out too often). I know this would shock you that I end up here, not at all. Loving God and loving my neighbor as I do myself have become for me the most challenging and life giving way to consider the commandments. To live “By Heart” is to live a life of love—to follow Jesus in such a way that my life is characterized by the love I show to all people.

Young Youth Update for September 2017

I am thrilled to be the Young Youth Director at First Lutheran Church! As I am thinking about the first part of my position I think about how busy everyone is at this time of year, school starting and transitions into a new routine. I had the opportunity to meet Lyle Griner who wrote the following… and are my thoughts exactly! 

Staff Update

One of the primary functions of the senior pastor at First Lutheran is to address staffing needs. Like many other workplaces, the church is facing different challenges and opportunities today than it did even 10 years ago. Our staff is built to reflect those evolving needs. In 2014 our Strategic Plan cast a vision for what our staff will look by 2019. It was then that we forecasted changes in job descriptions for the senior and associate pastors as well as the director of hospitality. We also named new positions we hoped to add for the sake of providing programs and services that had become expected or needed by our members. The plan led us to create a position for a director of small groups ministry. Bridget Crave was hired in 2015. We also recognized we needed to hire a full-time youth director. So we hired Tina Nelson in 2015. As much as our high schoolers need a youth director, we saw our adults need an ‘adult director’, too. We hoped to add this position by 2016. We hoped to hire a stewardship consultant who led some financial education by 2016 as well. And by 2019 we dreamed of hiring a director of worship & arts. Further descriptions of these roles, by the way, can be found in the 2014 Strategic Plan, which is available in the church office.

Help save a life: Blood Drive TODAY! 12:30–5:30pm!

Blood Drive TODAY in the narthex, 12:30–5:30pm!

Every day ordinary people are saved by some pretty extraordinary people. People who give blood. Your donation could be the most valuable gift you ever give. Just ask anyone who’s ever received. Walk-ins welcome! Please bring a photo ID.