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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Olive Branch, 9/7/12

Accent on Worship

     While I’m sure it is not unusual to see the new Vicar aimlessly walking the halls looking lost and confused, your newest Vicar, Neal Cannon (that’s me), will have a little extra of that this year.  That’s because not only am I orienting myself to a new call, church, and people, but I am also adjusting myself to a new marriage and home!  Soon after I began at Mount Olive (August 26), I moved into a new duplex (September 1), and will soon be  married to my beautiful fiancée, Mary (September 8).  This process has been a whirlwind of activity and change, but I have been blessed by God with amazing friends, welcoming neighbors, and the Holy Spirit who has guided me along the way.

     I was born just outside of Crystal Lake, Illinois, four minutes after my identical twin brother Paul (who is also a pastor, now serving his first call in Crystal Lake at the church where we were baptized!), to my mother Julie, a nurse, and father Charles, an airline pilot.  I have one older sister, Susie, and one younger sister, Marybeth.  Together, we moved from Crystal Lake to Cincinnati, Ohio, where I developed my life-long love of the Cincinnati Bengals, my favorite professional football team.  Our stay in Cincinnati was not long, however, and our family moved to Park City, Utah when I was in the third grade, where we remained through high school.

     After high school, I attended Augustana College in Sioux Falls, SD where I received my undergraduate degree in Business Communications.  During each college summer I worked at Voyageurs Lutheran Ministry in northern Minnesota as a counselor, BWCA canoe guide (where I learned to love the outdoors), and on program staff.  After college, I felt a call towards youth ministry and began work as the middle school youth director at Roseville Lutheran Church, where I have worked for the past six years.  While I loved my job there, I began to feel another tug in my life towards seminary and pastoral ministry.  That tug led me to Luther Seminary in St. Paul, where I dived in to theological and pastoral learning these past two years.

Through it all, I have come to love Lutheran tradition, theology, and people.  I am excited to land at Mount Olive Lutheran Church where I will learn from you and with you about this great God of ours, and his Son Jesus Christ.  Praise be to God!

- Vicar Neal Cannon

This Week in Adult Education

     This Sunday, September 9, Pastor Crippen will present part 1 of a 2-part series on “An Introduction to the Book of James.”

New Olive Branch Publication Schedule 

     Beginning with this issue, The Olive Branch schedule returns to weekly publication. The publication date of the weekly newsletter is moving from Mondays to Fridays.  The result will be that members will receive news of the congregation and other information just prior to Sunday’s liturgies and fellowship, which is more timely, and copies of the newsletter may also be given to visitors at worship and still be fresh information that morning.

Name Change and Request for Helpers

     The Worship Committee recognizes the valuable service the greeters are performing during our worship services, and most of you realize it goes far beyond greeting folks at the door.  Greeters arrive at least thirty minutes prior to the services, ensure bulletins and other informational brochures are available to the worshipers.  As well, they ensure doors are unlocked, lights and fans turned on, and windows opened or closed.  They may also be asked to perform some minor duties for the other worship assistants, depending on the logistics of the service.  They keep track of and record the numbers in attendance. They are also responsible for the offering collection, the procession of the gifts to the altar, as well as coordinating the flow of traffic to the eucharist table.  At the end of the service, they see that the offering is transferred quickly to the safe and conclude their duties by tidying the pews in the nave.  They also often field questions of newcomers, and now and again may have to respond to minor emergencies.  In other words, the greeters are much more than people who just greet at the door.  They are ushers, gracious hosts, ambassadors.  Therefore, it was decided in the most recent Worship Committee meeting that there will be a name change in the servant roster from "Greeter" to "Usher."

     With all of that in mind, we are always looking for new ushers, especially those who can serve with flexibility for both services, as well as evening services.  Those who serve in the evening would be asked to learn how to close the building, therefore adding some additional duties, similar to the previous "Building Keeper" position.  This commitment is available for new and current ushers.  If you are interested in learning the building keeper duties of the ushers and have a flexible schedule that allows you to serve in the evening, please let Brian Jacobs know.

Book Discussion Group

     Mount Olive’s Book Discussion group meets on the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. For the September 8 meeting they will read The Sparrow, by Mary Doria Russell. For the October 13 meeting they will read Remarkable Creatures, by Tracy Chevalier. All readers welcome!

Olivites in the News

     This month’s edition of Metro Lutheran features an article about Susan Cherwien, written by former Mount Olive member, Mike Sherer.

     (While you’re looking at the newspaper, be sure to check out who was “Caught Reading Metro Lutheran” – you’ll see some familiar faces!)

Prayer Shawl Ministry

     Do you knit or crochet?  Yes?  Then mark 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 AM.
     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 (

A Word of Thanks 

     Many thanks to Marcella Daehn, Beth Gaede, Peggy Hoeft,  Tim Lindholm and T.J. Schnabel, Bonnie McClellan, and Sandra and Steve Pranschke, who contributed nearly 20 people-hours to clean our chancel, transepts, and narthex, and polish the brass candelabra and fittings. Our worship space positively glows!

October 2 is Drawing Near

     Tuesday October 2, is the first day of Way to Goals Tutoring for this year, and I am looking for a few good men and women to be a positive force in a child's life by becoming a volunteer tutor.  If you have a heart for children this is the job for you!  This is a once a week commitment on Tuesday evenings from 7:00-8:30 p.m.  You will spend one hour with your student and the last half an hour enjoying a snack and fun activity, or just visiting with the other students and tutors.  The youth are in second through sixth grade.  The season goes from the first Tuesday in October through the last Tuesday in May.  We do not meet when the Minneapolis Public Schools are off and a few other Tuesday evenings. If you would like more information or you are interested in volunteering please give me a call at church, 612-827-5919.

- Donna Neste

Attention All Worship Assistants!

     The new schedule for September-December is now posted on the church website. Please check it soon to find out when you are scheduled:
(click on the red box labeled, “View Current Servant Schedule”).

Every Church a Peace Church September Potluck Supper Meeting

When:   Monday, September 10, 6:30 pm
Where:  Living Table United Church of Christ, 4001 38th Ave. S.; Minneapolis 55406
Who:  You and ... someone from your church ... or another church? ...Your own pastor? …
            interested friend, neighbor or relative?
Why:  Support, networking, delicious food, and an outstanding program!

The program for this month is a presentation and discussion led by Michael Bayly entitled, "Justice, Peace, and the Minnesota Marriage Amendment: Understanding and speaking about the proposed constitutional ban on same-sex civil marriage from a justice and peace perspective.”
     For more Information, please visit  or send your questions via email to:

Thank You

     Thank you to all those new volunteers who helped with the Community Meal this past Labor Day weekend (and a continual thank you to those who come faithfully on those special Saturdays.)
- Mount Olive Neighborhood Ministries Committee

Rachel Crippen blog from Austria
     Some folks have asked the Crippens about how Rachel Crippen’s youth exchange year in Austria is going.  The easiest way to find out is have her tell you, since she’s blogging about her experience online, and including lots of photographs.  Go to and it’s all there.  Past entries are listed on the sidebar, and people can leave comments if they wish, or even “subscribe,” which means getting e-mail notices whenever she makes new entries.  Pastor Crippen and his family are grateful for all the kind thoughts and all the prayers people are offering as she has this great experience.

Wear Your Nametags!

     As a way to help Vicar Neal become familiar with our names, it would be very hospitable if we could all consider wearing our nametags on Sundays for the next several weeks. If you don’t have a nametag, or if yours has been lost or misplaced, please contact the church office for a new one.

Church Library News

     I am pleased to finally be able to share some news of progress regarding the inclusion of a DVD collection for adults in our library. All summer we awaited the arrival of an ordered media spinner rack and finally accepted a substitute so that we could enter the fall season with something to use to display our newly processed DVD collection.
     So can now announce the following acquisitions in this beginning DVD collection:

  • WALKING THE BIBLE -- a journey by land through the five books of Moses
  • JESUS -- HIS BIRTH AND MINISTRY (Reader's Digest Series -- Great People of the Bible)
  • EARTH FROM ABOVE SERIES -- Biodiversity
  • SECRETS OF THE OCEAN REALMS SERIES -- Encounters of the Deep
  • SECRETS OF THE OCEAN REALMS SERIES -- Nature's Amazing Events
  • SECRETS OF THE OCEAN REALMS SERIES -- Nature's Incredible Designs
  • JOURNEY OF A LIFETIME SERIES -- Europe and The Middle East
  • JOURNEY OF A LIFETIME SERIES – Australia to the Americas
  • ADVENTURES IN SEARCH OF THE PAST (Reader's Digest Series) -- Mysteries of the Americas -- Vanished Civilizations
  • ADVENTURES IN SEARCH OF THE PAST -- Mysteries of Europe and the Mediteranean -- Myths and Legends
  • ADVENTURES IN SEARCH OF THE PAST -- Mysteries of the Orient -- Ancient Journeys
  • JOY TO THE WORLD -- featuring The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra
  • BRETHREN -- by White Knuckle Media
  • THE GREATEST GENERATION SPEAKS with Tom Brokaw (also D-Day, a Leap into History)
  • THE GREATEST GENERATION with Tom Brokaw  (Memories of World War II)
  • Disc I -- Rebels, Revolution, Westward Division
  • Disc II -- Civil War, Heartland Cities, Boom Bonus
  • Disc III -- Bust, World War II, Superpower, Millenium
  • NEVER STOP SINGING -- A Celebration of Minnesota's Choral Legacy
  • CHRISTMAS AT ST. OLAF -- 2007 (Where Peace and Love and Hope Abide)
  • JACK HANNA'S ANIMAL ADVENTURES -- On Safari with Jack; Little Seen Africa; Africa on the Edge; Safari Through the Masai Mara; Phinda, Land of Adventure; and Jack's Camp

     We hope that soon we will begin to acquire DVDs for children as well as update our collection of children's books.  I would welcome a volunteer (or more) to assist in this process, especially if you have an association as an elementary or special education teacher or would have other expertise with children's literature to share.  Please contact me at my home or in the Library many Sundays.

     Kudos to Target Corporation and The Minneapolis Star Tribune for presenting “A Family Reading Adventure” this Saturday, September 8, at the Hyland Lake Park Reserve. Details have been in the Star Tribune newspaper the past two weeks and we hope many families will have an opportunity to take part in this special event.

     We close with two appropos quotations --  "Libraries Change Lives" and "In a library we are surrounded by many hundreds of dear friends" by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

- Leanna Kloempken

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