November 2014 Missions Newsletter

News from our missions in the United States and abroad.

November 2014
News From Our Mission Fields…

Home Outreach Update



Hope – Cedar Park/Leander, TX


  • Served by Pastor Brad Kerkow, Hope currently numbers 60 souls.
  • Hope is in the planning stages of a building project. The congregation would like to build a permanent sanctuary on its present site. A ministry center/parsonage currently occupies part of Hope’s land.
  • At the end of the summer, Hope held its second annual “Theater Bible School.”




Redeeming Grace – Rogers, MN


  • Pastor David Russow serves this congregation on the northwest side of Minneapolis. The congregation has been worshiping together since 2006.
  • Redeeming Grace now numbers 175 souls.
  • A soccer camp was held this past summer with some assistance from special volunteers (including BLC and BLTS students).






Outreach Idea of the Month 

“Christmas For Kids”


It’s not too early to plan!


Pastor Nick Proksch, currently serving River Heights Lutheran – East Grand Forks, MN, has helped plan and implement a number of outreach-minded events. One that seemed to be popular was “Christmas for Kids” (CFK). A few of the highlights of planning for this event follow.

  • Set the date: Usually a Saturday or two before Christmas seems to work best. A two-hour time slot was the normal time scheduled. (Make sure many/most of your church families will be able to attend.)
  • Publicity: Postcard invitations could be sent as a blanket mailing, to your prospect list, or both. Mail invites 1-2 weeks in advance.
  • Web site: Make sure the church’s web site is updated with the CFK information.
  • Activities: A mix of crafts/games and a Bible lesson or two should suffice. The crafts should connect somehow to the Bible lesson. Potential crafts: ornaments, making something Christmas-y out of candy, snow globes, and gingerbread churches.
  • Volunteers: Make sure an ample number of volunteers are on hand to help! Volunteers can also assist in publicity and planning the crafts.

If you would like more details, or want to know what sort of CFK Pastor Proksch is planning for this year, contact him at

 Sample postcard publicity for a Christmas for Kids event.






Previous price: $50. Limited quantities available for $25! (Regular retail price: $219)
What is a MAP? It is a thorough demographic study of an area of your choosing, completed by the Percept Group. You are able to establish the boundaries of a study in four ways: (1) with a radius reaching out so many miles from a midpoint, (2) by ZIP codes (multiple ZIP codes must be contiguous), (3) by county (multiple counties must be contiguous), and (4) by creating your own boundaries on a map in any shape or form. The area chosen should be an area “reachable” by your congregation.
There are three main sections of a MAP study. (1) The actual “Ministry Area Profile” gives information regarding population types, trends, and projections; household information; lifestyle trends; which denominations are in the area, along with community concerns, values and desires; and a series of maps that give a view of population and household characteristics, patterns, and trends. (2) The “Compass Report” provides data regarding the religious climate, perspectives, and desires in the target area. (3) The “Source Book” provides how Percept gathers its information.
Examples of a MAP study are available on request. Numerous congregations have made use of this valuable tool and have found it helpful.
Please contact BHO chairman Prof. Michael K. Smith ( for more information.


World Outreach Update


Cyclone Hudhud Damages Churches in India



A hurricane (called “cyclone” in India) recently ravaged India. Pastor G.J. Ananda Raju sent the following message:

Cyclone Hudhud slammed into the coast of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha, tearing down tens of thousands of mud-and-thatch homes, and flattening rice, banana and sugarcane plantations. Hudhud underwent rapid deepening in the following days and was classified as a Very Severe Cyclonic Storm. Hudhud reached its peak strength of wind speeds at 175 km/h (109 mph)

In our state nine out of thirteen districts of Andhra Pradesh where standing crop of rice, followed by groundnut, sugarcane and other horticulture crops were yet to be harvested. Over 700,000 people, including 500,000 people in AP, have been evacuated and put up in relief camps. The local government made adequate arrangement to shift half a million people in all.
Some of the LMSI elders in coastal region and inVishakapatnam District with thatched worship places and tiled worship houses were severely damaged and became helpless.  We thank the Lord, though the damages were severe, our Lord protected them from great danger. We are praying that our Lord look at them to get them repaired. I am here with sending some pictures received so far and yet to be received where damages were caused and need to be assisted.

We request you kindly to remember this great need in your prayers.





Help for Shalem



Last year, many throughout the United States donated funds to help a young boy named Shalem, a member of our mission in India, receive a liver transplant. While the transplant was successful, Shalem developed an infection recently which required an additional surgery. That surgery was performed and Shalem has again returned home to recover. His family does not have the funds to cover this most recent surgery, so Shalem had to return home for recovery immediately following the surgery. Please remember Shalem and his family in your prayers. If you would like to help with the new medical bills, please see the donation information at the bottom of this email.

Shalem praying with Pastor Solomon prior to his latest surgery.

After the surgery, Shalem had to leave the hospital because his family can’t afford to keep him there during his recovery.



Prayers for Ukraine

With the ongoing political unrest in Ukraine, we ask for your continued prayers for our Christian brothers and sisters in the Ukrainian Lutheran Church, as well as for Nick and Kerry Laper and the Gift of Life program.



Would you like to help with our home or world outreach?  Donations are accepted online at: You may also send your donation by mail to:

Evangelical Lutheran Synod
6 Browns Court


Mankato, MN  56001



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