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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Olive Branch, September 27, 2010

Accent on Worship

We do not need a linguist to tell us that liturgy is the work of the people. We know it from what we do Sunday after Sunday as a people gathered to praise God. Although we pay some people (pastor, cantor) to provide leadership in our worship, we know that the liturgy is not their domain alone, but belongs to all of us together. You can see it in the vigor of our singing, in the intensity of our listening, in the fervor of our prayer, in the reverence of our bowing, in the care and frequency with which we mark our bodies with the sign of the cross, the sign of Christ and his people. We own the liturgy with passion because it centers us on what is most important to us: God, and God’s immeasurable love for us in Christ Jesus.
We find as well, you and I, that liturgy does not just stay within the walls of the church building, but comes with us into our homes and into our world, It gets into our bones. It shapes our being. It informs what we say and what we do, We know something about the rhythm of the seasons, about the importance of the feasts, about the awesomeness of God, about the wonder of God’s Spirit at work in God’s people. And so we find the words of the Kyrie on our lips not just on Sunday morning, but when we hear of yet another killing in Afghanistan or Iraq or north Minneapolis; “Lord, have mercy.” And so we find ourselves declaring “thanks be to God” not only at the conclusion of a scripture reading but also when brought face to face with the gracious love of God in the kind words of a friend or in the loving deeds of a stranger.
Because all who worship know something about worship, and because we together hold a vast store of knowledge, perspective, and passion when it comes to liturgy, in the coming months non-staff members of the congregation will contribute to the “Accent on Worship” column in The Olive Branch. Staff members will still write as they have in the past, but once a month someone else from the congregation will write the article that fills this space. I suspect that we will find what is written by those who sit beside us in the pew to be interesting, enlightening, and challenging, and that it will lead us into a deeper appreciation of our worship of God.

Warren Peterson, Director of Worship

The Feast of St. Francis of Assisi
Monday, October 4, 2010
Blessing of Animals – 7:00 pm

Bring your friends (2-legged, 4-legged, and no-legged!) for this annual service of blessing of pets, held in the Nave.

Pastor Joseph Crippen to be Installed on October 17

The celebratory Eucharist with Rite of Installation will be at 10:45 a.m. on Sunday, October 17. There will also be Morning Prayer at 8:00 a.m.
Following the liturgy, all are invited to attend a celebration luncheon to honor and welcome the Crippen family. Those preparing the meal need to know how many are coming, and ask that you let us know if you are planning to come, so that they know how much food to prepare. Reservation cards were mailed to all Mount Olive members and friends last week, and they are also available at church in the narthex. If you are planning to come, return a reservation card, or call or email the church office by October 10 to let us know. Everyone is welcome!

Sunday’s Adult Forum

October 3: Dr. Lori Brandt Hale of Augsburg College will speak about the life and thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
As we approach the U.S. election day, we should reflect on how Christians, whose Lord is Jesus Christ, manage their affairs in the civic state. Are “Church” and “State” really separate? Should they be? These are long-rehearsed questions within the Lutheran tradition.
On October 3 and 10, Dr. Lori Brandt Hale of Augsburg College will speak about the life and thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. A young and brilliant Lutheran theologian in Germany during the rise of Hitler and the Nazi state, Bonhoeffer struggled with his loyalties to Christ (which he believed required a commitment to nonviolence) and his profound concern over the spread of Nazi terror. He eventually forsook nonviolence to participate in a conspiracy toward the assassination of Adolph Hitler. He was discovered and eventually executed by the Nazis for his involvement in that conspiracy. And he is now honored in the Lutheran calendar as a martyr for Christ for giving his life in defense of the defenseless.
But how did his theology develop? Who was this German pastor and theologian – now one of the most controversial of those considered martyrs?
Dr. Hale will address these and other questions in her two presentations in the Adult Forum, a task for which she is eminently qualified. Dr. Hale is associate professor of religion at Augsburg College, having completed her Ph.D. dissertation on Bonhoeffer at the University of Virginia. She is also the chair-elect of the English Section of the International Bonhoeffer Society.

Creation Care Group

Lutherans have long been concerned with stewardship issues. More and more of us are redefining stewardship to include creation care. Indeed, the rise of the local interfaith group Congregations Caring for Creation ( illustrates the powerful ways that people of faith can respond to ecological degradation, climate change, and environmental inequities.
With this in mind, it seems appropriate for our congregation to begin to explore the possibility of establishing a Creation Care group here at Mount Olive. Please join us for a discussion in the Undercroft at 9:30 a.m. on October 10, 2010 to look into the possibilities of starting such a group. If you are interested, but unable to attend, contact Michael Lansing at with your ideas. Thanks!

Pastoral Care in the Post-Interim Interim

During these weeks before Pastor Crippen begins his ministry among us on October 11, please know that pastoral care is available to all who need it. If you are in need of a pastor, please call Rev. Art Halbardier at 763-639-7701, or Rev. Rob Ruff at 651-983-9622.

Book Discussion Group

For their meeting on October 9 the Book Discussion group will read, The Corrections, by Jonathan Franzen. And for their meeting on November 13, they will read, The Red and the Black, by Stendhal.
The Book Discussion Group meets on the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 am in the Chapel Lounge. All readers are welcome!

Chicago Avenue to be Resurfaced

Beginning today (9/27), Chicago Avenue in front of the church will be closed for approximately two weeks as the Minneapolis Public Works Dept. removes the existing asphalt on the street and replaces it with new pavement. Chicago Ave. is posted “NO PARKING” and during this time we ask that all from Mount Olive park in the church parking lot across 31st Ave. until the project is complete.
There are two parking spaces and a ramp behind the church which can be used to drop off or pick up those with handicap accessibility needs.

Minnesotans Standing Together: A Multi-faith Prayer Service for Respect

Former Governor Al Quie will provide the opening address on Tuesday, September 28 as Minnesotans of many faith traditions will join together at Central Lutheran Church in downtown Minneapolis to pray for respect for the many ways that citizens of the state profess their religious beliefs. Other participants include the Rev. Peg Chemberlin, Executive Director of the Minnesota Council of Churches, Imam Makram El-Amin of Masjid An Nur and Rabbi David Locketz, President of the Minnesota Rabbinical Assocation.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
Central Lutheran Church
333 12th Street S,. Minneapolis, MN 55404-1496

Music & Fine Arts’ First Event of the New Season: “Silent Movie”

This Sunday, October 3, come and hear Mount Olive’s mighty Schlicker pipe organ in an entirely different role: as accompaniment, or improvised sound, for the original 1925 Lon Chaney movie, “The Phantom of the Opera”.
John Schwandt is equally at home on a classical or theatrical pipe organ and is known for his award-winning improvisational skills, his musical versatility, and his ability to excite and engage audiences of every kind. Not to be missed!
A popcorn and refreshments reception will follow the performance.

Volunteer Tutors Desperately Needed for Way to Goals Tutoring

Last school season there were six volunteer tutors for Way to Goals Tutoring. After Christmas we had only nine students (down from 13) who came regularly. This year the program is losing two of six tutors, which leaves only four tutors. Even with six tutors, some had to take more than one student, and when we begin in October we always have more kids than we really should take. There are always a few students who should be in a one-to-one tutoring situation, but sometimes that can't happen because there are not enough volunteers.
Additional tutors are desperately needed! If YOU can find it in your heart to take on the rewarding volunteer task of helping a child with homework (for an hour each Tuesday evening at 7 pm, October-May), please call Donna Neste at church and she will give you all the details and answer any questions about the program that you may have.

Our New Pastor: A Brief Introduction

October 17 and the Installation of Mount Olive's seventh pastor, Joseph G. Crippen, are just around the corner. As we embark on a new era and prepare to welcome Pastor Crippen and his family into our parish, a little biographical information would seem an appropriate way to begin the introductions and conversations between pastor and people, the undershepherd and his flock.
Pastor Crippen is the second of seven children born to Gary and the late Nancy Crippen and grew up in Worthington, in southwest Minnesota. He was baptized and confirmed at St. Matthew's Lutheran Church in Worthington, and graduated from Worthington High School in 1981. Mary Crippen grew up in Burnsville, Minnesota, and graduated from Burnsville High School in 1983. They are both graduates of Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter. Prior to seminary, Pastor Crippen served as a youth director at St. Philip's Lutheran Church, Hastings, Minnesota.
Pastor Crippen did his M. Div. at Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, graduating in 1991. While at LSTC he studied with many of the Seminex faculty, one of the reasons he chose to attend this school, having grown up in the Missouri Synod and having left it as an adult. As an aside, he says it was during this time that he was also privileged to work with and know the late Paul Manz, which was a great joy. He did his internship at Luther Memorial Lutheran Church in Syracuse, Nebraska. His first call was to Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Cleveland, Minnesota, and he has been at St. John's Lutheran Church in Northfield the past 14 years.
The Crippens have four children. Hannah is 21 and is a senior at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. Martha is 18 and is a first year student at Luther College. Rachel is 16 and a Junior in High School. Peter is 13 and is in seventh grade. Both Pastor and Mary have family in the Twin Cities as well as around the country (Seattle, Dallas, Sioux Falls, and Worthington).
Let the conversation and introductions continue at a special welcome luncheon following the 10:45 Holy Eucharist and Rite of Installation on the 17th, at a "Meet the Pastor" Adult Forum between the liturgies on October 31, and whenever pastor and people come together in the days and seasons to come.

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