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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Olive Branch, 9/21/12

Accent on Worship

A Teaching Parish

     It’s been nearly a month since Vicar Neal Cannon began with us, and in that month he’s gotten married, so it’s been a busy one for him.  People have had a chance to meet and greet him and his wife Mary in these first weeks, and he seems to be settling in.  This rhythm of saying farewell to one vicar while preparing to welcome another is a new one for me, but not for this parish.  Neal is our 42nd vicar at Mount Olive (if I’ve done the counting properly), so this rhythm is well-established among many in this congregation.

     But it seems good to remind ourselves as we begin another year with another vicar of the nature of this ministry among us.  We are a teaching parish which commits itself to welcome a new seminarian each year and to live with him or her for a year in a relationship of mutual learning and ministry.  This is a crucial year for seminarians, as they explore and experience parish ministry in depth in ways they haven’t before, and learn their gifts and limitations in ways they cannot simply do in class.  It is also crucial for us, as we open our lives and our congregation to welcome these people among us.  They learn from us; we learn from them; together we are privileged to serve God in this place.

     It is worth keeping in mind our congregation’s call to teach.  Sometimes it seems people are nervous about “letting” the vicar do something without someone like me looking over their shoulder or checking everything.  This is part of the learning, that a seminarian tries things out, attempts to do ministry, and the chips fall where they may.  Sometimes things are successful, sometimes they are not.  In all cases learning can happen.  Our job is to help each vicar in that learning.

     To that end, I encourage all members of the congregation to consider offering Neal, and future vicars, feedback and responses to ministry they do.  The Internship Committee (Steve Manuel, Miriam Luebke, John Crippen, Ro Griesse, Warren Peterson, Peggy Hoeft) will be doing a number of formal evaluations, including written evaluations of each of his sermons.  But all of us are called to be a part of his learning and a part of his teaching.  Any responses he can receive will help him learn, and will shape his future ministry as a pastor.  It would be wonderful if when he teaches, a number of folks would write a simple reflection or feedback about how they received it.  It would be helpful if people in the pews (besides the committee) would once in a while give him written feedback on a sermon (we have simple forms if you’d like to use one, printed and in the office), more than “nice sermon.”  If there are things he does well in any kind of ministry here, let him know.  If there are things you think would help him learn and grow, it would be a generous gift to share that as well.

     This can be a wonderful place for a seminarian to learn.  The more intentional we all are to be faithful sisters and brothers to our vicars as well as compassionate teachers, the better we will serve our call to be a teaching parish for future pastors of this church.  Thank you for all you do in this important ministry!

- Joseph

Sunday Readings

September 23, 2012 – Time after Pentecost, Sunday 25
Jeremiah 11:18-20 + Psalm 54
James 3:13—4:3, 7-8a + Mark 9:30-37

September 30, 2012 – Time after Pentecost, Sunday 26
Numbers 11:4-6, 10-16, 24-29 + Psalm 19:7-14
James 5:13-20 + Mark 9:38-50

Sunday’s Adult Education: Sunday, September 23, 9:30 a.m.

     This week we will view a film, “The Creed: What Christians Profess, and Why It Ought to Matter.” Produced by actor, director, and writer, Tim Kelleher, The Creed is a remarkable film about why the radical claims made in the Nicene Creed are so important to all of us.

     Next Sunday, September 30, our forum will be "Music Ministry in Prison," presented by Bea Hasselmann, the founder/director of the Metropolitan Boys Choir, who has undertaken a ministry of music among inmates of the Minnesota Correction Facility at Red Wing. In this presentation, Ms. Hasselmann will discuss this project -- how she came to it, how it works, what its benefits are.

Prayer Shawl Ministry

     Do you knit or crochet?  Yes?  Then mark This Sunday, September 23 on your calendar because you are needed at the next meeting of the Mount Olive Prayer Shawl Ministry group.   We will meet at 9:30 a.m. in the Undercroft.

     Don't know how to knit or crochet?  No problem.  We can teach you!    So grab a cup of coffee and join the meeting to learn more about this rewarding ministry.

     If you need additional information or have any questions about this project, contact Peggy Hoeft (

Book Discussion Group

     Mount Olive’s Book Discussion group meets on the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. For October 13, they will read Remarkable Creatures, by Tracy Chevalier, and for November 10 they will read, Vanity Fair, by William Makepeace Thackeray.

It’s a Wedding – And You’re Invited

     The Mount Olive community is invited to share in the marriage celebration of Matt McCuen and Katie Krueger on October 13, 2012.  The liturgy will be held at 3:00 pm at Mount Olive with light hors d'oeuvres immediately following in the Chapel Lounge.  No gifts please!  If you are unable to attend, Katie and Matt appreciate your prayers and best wishes.

Feast of St. Francis of Assisi: Thursday, October 4, 7:00 pm

Bring your pets to church for this annual service of blessing!

Save Your Manufacturer’s Coupons

     Please save the coupon sections from your newspapers and mailbox (Red Plum, Smart Source, and P & G Savers). Through TRUST, a program called “Store to Door” redeems these coupons for general operating funds. Cut out the coupons you need,  leave the rest of the book intact, and bring them to church. These coupon books can be placed in the white box in the coat room.

Welcome, New Members!

     We give thanks to God for these new sisters and brothers who will be received into membership at the 10:45 Eucharist this Sunday, September 23:

Anders & Valerie John-Amala (their son Elijah was previously received by Baptism)
Cathy Bosworth & Marty Hamlin (associate members, will be received in October)
Sue Browender
Martin Connell & Greg Terhaar (associate members)
Ronald & Barbara French (associate members)
Marilyn Gebauer
Jennifer Kaufenberg (daughter Tate will be received by Baptism at a later date)
Mark Lofstrom
Julie Manuel
Marty & Rebecca Melang
Tim & Amy Reddy
Janelle East & Bern Youngblood

     Join us for lunch following the second liturgy to greet our newest members!

A Note From the Property Director

     Thanks to all the helping hands for their assistance on the September 8 Clean-up Day!  We made great progress on getting the church ready for the fall activities.  Another Fall Clean-up Day is scheduled for Saturday, October 20.  Watch the Olive Branch for more details.

- Brenda Bartz, Property Director

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