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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Olive Branch,. 3/29/13

Accent on Worship

2013 Easter Message from Presiding Bishop Mark S. Hanson

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

     Easter. It is about more than an open tomb. It is the good news of the risen Christ who opens lives.

     Think about Jesus' friends after his death. Their lives were closed down by fear, disappointment and confusion. The risen Christ appeared saying "peace be with you" and opened their lives with a liberating word of reconciliation. In the same way Christ opens your life with a baptismal promise that joins your life to his death and resurrection. "You are my child. Nothing in all creation will separate you from my love."

     Even now Christ is opening your life, your daily work, your passions and imagination. Christ is opening your daily life into a holy calling that fills the world with love. At the Lord’s Table, Christ is opening you into a community that can bear even suffering with confidence, and sorrow with hope.

     The risen Christ opens the Scriptures — the full depth of God's promise made to Sarah and Abraham now coming to life in the new creation. Even when everything else is being stripped away, the risen Christ opens you to God's promised future.

     Christ opens you to God's work of forgiveness and reconciliation. Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, is opening this way of life for you.

In God's grace,

The Rev. Mark S. Hanson
Presiding Bishop
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Sunday Readings

March 31, 2013 – Resurrection of Our Lord
Isaiah 65:17-25 + Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24
I Corinthians 15:19-26 + Luke 24:1-12

April 7, 2013 – Second Sunday of Easter
Acts 5:27-32 + Psalm 118:14-29
Revelation 1:4-8 + John 20:19-31

Worship for the Remainder of Holy Week

Thursday, March 28: Maundy Thursday
Holy Eucharist, with Washing of Feet at 7:00 pm

Friday, March 29: Good Friday
Stations of the Cross at 12:00 noon
Adoration of the Cross at 7:00 pm

Saturday, March 30: Holy Saturday
Lumen Christi: The Easter Vigil, at 8:30 pm, followed by a festive reception

Sunday, March 31: Resurrection of Our Lord
Festival Holy Eucharist at 8:00 and 10:45 am

Attention Mount Olive Worship Servants

     On April 15 I will begin working on the schedule for the 3rd quarter of 2013.  Please submit any requests for the months of July, August and September 2013 to me no later than April 15, 2013.      
     You may contact me via e-mail at or by phone at 952-835-7132.

- Peggy Hoeft

March is Minnesota FoodShare Month: Just a Few Days Left!

     It’s not too late to donate cash or groceries to the local food shelf during Minnesota FoodShare month in March. A donation of money more than doubles the amount of food available to food shelves, because food shelves can purchase food at discounted prices.  If you choose to give in this way, make your check payable to Mount Olive and write Food Shelf on the memo line. If you prefer to donation non-perishable groceries, they may be brought to the cart in the coat room.

Music & Fine Arts to Present The Uptown Brass

     The Uptown Brass Quintet will appear in concert at Mount Olive on Sunday, April 21, 4:00 p.m. (not April 14, as previously published!).

Book Discussion Group

     For the April 13 meeting the Book Discussion group will discuss In the Company of the Courtesan, by Sarah Dunant.  For the May 11 meeting we will discuss Children of God by Mary Doria Russell.  This is the sequel to her novel The Sparrow which we read earlier.

Mount Olive Friendly Phone Call Ministry

     A new congregational ministry at Mount Olive is about to begin. The ministry is intended to help the congregation keep in closer contact with members who have difficulty getting to church or who are living alone.

     We are in process of identifying people who might like to receive a call on occasion and those who would act as callers. If you are a person who would enjoy receiving a regular phone call and would enjoy staying in touch with a member of the congregation, or if you would like to be a caller, I’d like to hear from you.

     To participate, please call Sue Ellen Zagrabelny at 763-420-8377 or you may contact her by email at

Semi-annual Congregation Meeting to be Held Sunday, April 28

     The Vestry has announced the date of the April semi-annual congregation meeting to be Sunday, Apr. 28, after the second liturgy.  Among the items on the agenda will be election of officers and directors, whose terms will begin on July 1.  Any wishing to suggest names to the nominating committee for the positions of president, vice-president, secretary, and directors of congregational life, evangelism, or neighborhood ministries are encouraged to contact Adam Krueger, congregational president.

     Also on the agenda are several constitutional and bylaw amendments presented to the congregation by the Vestry, available in the narthex at church.  The first page, the constitutional amendments, is a second hearing of amendments presented and approved at the October semi-annual meeting.  Should these be approved again, with at least a 2/3 majority of those present and voting, they will be formally ratified.  The second pages are bylaw amendments which only need the one hearing and vote at this meeting.  Included in these amendments are bylaws establishing a business and finance committee, directed by the treasurer, and some corrective edits to several directors’ bylaws.

Night on the Street

     On Friday night April 19, Peter Crippen and Eric Manuel and their mothers, along with members of Trust Youth group and more than 400 other teens from 30 Twin Cities congregations, have committed to spend the night in a church parking lot near downtown Minneapolis to learn about youth  homelessness. Together they will learn what life is like for teens on the street.

How do homeless teens make it from day to day?
What resources are available to them?
What can be done to help those who have no place to call home?

     For that evening, they will stand in a soup line for dinner and spend the night sleeping outside in cardboard boxes.

     They are doing this not only to increase awareness of youth homelessness, but also to raise money to help in efforts to end the problem. Participants been asked to raise enough funds to provide one week’s worth of safe and supportive services for a homeless youth. That’s $140.00 for seven days!

     If you are able to help us meet that goal, please see Peter or Eric on Sunday  morning, or drop off a check in the church office, payable to Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative, with "Night on the Street" in the memo line. All donations to A Night on the Street will go to Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative, a faith-based nonprofit housing organization. The event has corporate sponsors, so every dollar we raise will go directly to serving the youth!

Thanks to the Cleaning Crew!

     Many thanks to Peggy Hoeft, Steve Pranschke, Katherine Hanson, and Beth Gaede, who cleaned our chancel, transepts, and narthex, and polished the brass candelabra and fittings in preparation for our Holy Week and Easter liturgies. Special thanks to Timm Lindholm and T.J. Schnabel for the many hours they spent treating the chancel paneling and furnishings, pulpit, and lectern with Liquid Gold. This was a huge undertaking, and the results are impressive.


     At Mount Olive we have just completed a successful multi-year Capital Campaign, Pastor Crippen is well into his third year as our pastor and has a strong sense of who and where we are, and our Neighborhood Ministry Coordinator, Donna Neste, has announced her retirement in 2014.  This is the time to discern God's vision for our shared ministry in this neighborhood and the world.  Listed here are opportunities for you to gather as community so the heart and soul of Mount Olive can discern what God would have us do in this place at this time.

     To Pray and Gather for three congregational meetings this spring:  We ask each member to pray for this process over the next few months and participate in three congregational meetings to build community around our vision process.  Come together after the second liturgy on April 7 and May 5 and the only liturgy on June 2.  A light lunch will be served.

On April 7 we will create a time-line of our history in this place with the neighborhood.  We need the memory of those who have been here many years as well as the questions and insights of those who have become members more recently.
On May 5 we will identify our core values that will help us determine how to move forward in the process.
On June 2 we will hear a report from our community observers and community interviewers and then actively brainstorm ideas about God’s vision for our future as God's people in this place.

     To Listen and Observe:  We need members to go to pre-determined locations around the church’s neighborhood in groups of three to observe what they see and hear and then meet in someone's home and pray together.  We call these members  Community Observers because they will not speak to others, just observe.  We are asking them to commit to 2-3 visits as a group between April 14 and May 12.  The purpose is to simply observe and pray, to let your eyes and heart be open, not judge or find a solution.  We need 90 volunteers (30 groups of 3)!

     To Listen and Interview:  We need members to interview identified community leaders about what they see in and hope for the neighborhoods around Mount Olive.  We call these members Community
Interviewers and are asking them to commit to 2 visits between April 14 and May 12.  Sample interview questions will be provided.  The purpose is to understand what is being offered and what gifts and challenges they see.  We need 25 volunteers!

     On April 14 there will be training for all Community Interviewers and Community Observers after 2nd service from 12:30 to 1:30 pm.  A light lunch will be served.

     Sign-up sheets for all of these activities are at the church office with a more detailed job description.  Or please talk with any member of the vision team.

     There are also copies of the neighborhood report that we commissioned the Precept Group to do for us around the church and parish house (narthex, reception areas, chapel lounge, office) or ask a team member.  It shows faith preference, diversity, issues they care about, income level and more about the people who live within a two mile radius of the church.

     It is exciting to think about being deliberate in seeking what God has planned for Mount Olive, her people, and our neighborhoods.  Won’t you be a part of discovering what that might be and how it could look for our life together? Plan now to join us!

- Team members: Andrew Andersen, Judy Hinck, Adam Krueger, Connie Marty, Peter Tressel, Carol Austermann;  Staff members: Pastor Crippen, David Cherwien, Donna Neste.

Theology on Tap

     Good news Theology on Tap Enthusiasts - For our April 11 Theology on Tap, Jessinia Ruff has agreed to babysit young kids at Mount Olive!  She'll watch your kids from 7:15-9:15 p.m. so you can come join our community discussion.  Please contact Vicar Neal Cannon ( ahead of time if you would like to use Jessinia as a baby-sitter that night so we know how many kids to expect.  Cost for the night is $10 for 1 kid, $15 for two, and $20 for three or more.

     Theology on Tap is a group at Mount Olive that meets once a month at local bars/restaurants to enjoy a good beverage and dialogue about faith and life (no preparation or book reading required, only your personal knowledge and insight).  Contact Vicar Neal Cannon (, 612-827-5919 x12) if you would like to join us or have questions about Theology on Tap!

April Event Details
Who: Anyone 21+ is welcome to join
Where: Old Chicago – 2841 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55408
When: Thursday April 11, 7:30-9:00pm
Discussion Topic: TBD
Facebook Page & Group: Mount Olive Theology on Tap-  “Like” the Page to get updates on Theology on Tap
Contact: Vicar Neal Cannon (

Hebrews Study on Thursday Evenings Starting April 11

     The third Thursday Bible study series of this year begins on Thursday, April 11, and runs for six weeks.  Meeting in the Chapel Lounge from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Pr. Crippen will be leading a study of the book of Hebrews, an early Christian sermon preserved in the New Testament.  As usual, there will be a light supper when we begin.  If anyone wishes to provide the first meal, please let Pr. Crippen know.  All are welcome to this study opportunity!

Benefit Mount Olive Foundation With Your Thrivent Choice Dollars

     For those who are Thrivent Financial customers, you can benefit the Mount Olive Foundation at no cost to you with your Thrivent Choice Dollars.  But you must act very quickly as the deadline for doing so is March 31, 2013.  Here's how to do it:

     1.  Put in your browser and search for "Choice Dollars" on the web site.
     2.  Log into your existing account or create a new account.
     3.  Search for "Mount Olive Lutheran Church Foundation."
     4.  Click on the "Direct Now" button and you have completed your gift!
     What an easy and painless way to benefit Mount Olive's endowment.  Again, please act before March 31, 2013.

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