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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Olive Branch, 4/22/15

Accent on Worship

Last week, I realized I have only four months left with you before internship ends. I think about when I started, excited but unsure what to expect. I think about my first Accent article, highlighting the many ways I had witnessed you loving each other, loving me.

     Over these eight months, I have only added to that list. 1 John says, “Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action,” and I see this invitation lived out by all of you. I see “love in truth and action” as you strive to build community with our neighbors. I see love in the deep relationships between members who share rides to church each week. Love abounds as you welcome and create space for those new to Mount Olive, visitors, clergy, and staff alike. That love is evident as you offer practical help and hope to those  experiencing illness and loss.

     As we live into our Vision Expression, “In the presence of God, Being the presence of God,” we grow in our ability to embody God’s love in the world. And we come face to face with how diffi-cult it can be. Over coffee on Sun-day, one of you asked how to respond in love to the pain of friends who have lost their home, loved ones, everything, to the devastation of civil war, when the only thing that feels loving to them is violent revenge. Several of us wrestled with this, and found more questions than answers. How do you love one who has been hurt so badly? How do you love one who has hurt you? How would you respond?

     I am fortunate to be with you this year, to learn and wrestle and grow and love together. I am grateful for the time we have had, and grateful that my time is not up, yet. Thank you for teaching me about love in truth and action. Thank you for being who you are!

- Vicar Meagan McLaughlin

Sunday Readings

April 26, 2015: Fourth Sunday of Easter
Acts 4:5-12
Psalm 23
I John 3:16-24
John 10:11-18

May 3, 2015: Fifth Sunday of Easter
 Acts 8:26-40
Psalm 22:25-31
I John 4:7-21
John 15:1-8

Sunday’s Adult Forum: April 26, 9:30 am

 “Wisdom From the Desert: Stories from Women in the Early Church,” part 1 of a 2-part series presented by Prof. Sr. Mary Foreman, Assoc. Professor of Theology, St. Benedict University, St. Joseph, MN, and author of Praying With the Desert Mothers.

Semi-Annual Congregation Meeting to be Held This Sunday, April 26

     The Semi-annual Congregational meeting of Mount Olive congregation will be held after second liturgy this Sunday, April 26.

     On the agenda is the election of Vestry Officers. The slate of candidates recommended by the Vestry for election are:

President, Lora Dundek (1-year term)
Secretary, Peggy Hoeft (1-year term)
Vice President, Tom Graves (1-year term)
Treasurer, Tim Lindholm (1-year term)
Education Director, Steve Manuel (3-year term)
Property Director, Art Halbardier (3-year term)
Youth Director, Amy Thompson (3-year term)

Nominations for the Vestry may also be offered from the floor.

Other items of business are:
Ministry Fair/Update on Vision process
Mount Olive Foundation Presentation

All voting members of Mount Olive are encouraged to attend.

Encounters with Jesus: Bible Study on Thursday Evenings  

     The second Thursday Bible study series of this year began last Thursday, April 16, and runs for five weeks in the Chapel Lounge from 6:00-7:30 pm. The final session will end with the Holy Eucharist for the Feast of the Ascension on May 14.

     Vicar McLaughlin will lead a study focusing on five stories of encounters with Jesus from the New Testament. In addition to discussing the context and background, we will use the Ignatian meditation form, Praying with Imagination, as a way of entering into the stories.

     As usual, there will be a light supper when we begin. All are welcome to this study opportunity!

The Ascension of Our Lord
Thursday, May 14
Holy Eucharist at 7:00 pm

Book Discussion Group Update

     Mount Olive’s Book Discussion Group meets on the second Saturday of each month, at 10:00 am in the West Assembly Area at church. All readers are welcome!

     For the May 9 meeting, the Book Discussion group will read, The Boat of Longing, by O. E. Rølvaag. For June 13, The Last Chinese Chef, by Nicole Mones, and for July 11, Bleak House, by Charles Dickens.

Calling All Graduates!

     On Sunday, June 14, we will honor our graduates at a reception following the 9:30 a.m. liturgy.

     If you are graduating from high school, college, seminary, or another post-secondary school, or if you know of some-one else from Mount Olive who is graduating this spring, please take a moment to notify the church office. We want to be sure that all of our graduates are invited!

Amazing gRace Link Correction--Get Involved!

     Apologies for last week's link troubles. Try this:

     Whether you donate through Mount Olive or directly to team member Anna, 100% of your support will go to LVC. Anna Dundek and Eric Bell are getting ready to race around the Twin Cities on May 2 as they visit Lutheran Volunteer Corps placement sites to learn about LVC and promote the work of LVC members for peace with justice across our area.

     Check out the display case to see Anna and Eric and the places their gRace will take them.

     When Anna and Eric win (!?!) they will have the opportunity to direct donations to a particular LVC placement site. What would you like to see the money support? Leave them a message on their donation site about your favorite LVC "peace with justice" work.

Transitions Support Group
     All are welcome to visit the Transitions Support Group meetings if you've been hoping to find new ideas or encouragement to meet the challenges or uncertainties that are before you. This is an opportunity to share in fellowship, prayer, and discussion with others in the Mount Olive community.
     The next session meets on Wednesday, May 6, from 6- 7 pm at Mount Olive in the lower level Youth Room, and will be facilitated by Amy Cotter and Cathy Bosworth.    
     If you have questions, please contact Cathy at 612-708-1144 or

New Members to be Received May 17

     New members will be received on May 17, 2015, at the second liturgy.  A welcome brunch will follow the liturgy in the Undercroft.

     Please contact Andrew Andersen at 763-607-1689, or call the church office at 612-837-5910, if you are interested in becoming a member at Mount Olive.

The brunch is open to all Mount Olive folk as well as families and friends. Plan to come to meet our newest members and welcome them!

Hospitality Help Wanted!

     Could you help with a behind-the-scenes hospitality task?  We are in need of two or three persons who would be willing and able to launder table linens after they are used at funeral receptions or congregation events such as the Easter Vigil.  

     Please call the church office at 612-837-5919 to volunteer or talk with Gail Neilsen, Carla Manuel, or Andrew Andersen.

Mark Your Calendars for the May Day Parade, Sunday, May 3, Noon

     The May Day Parade and Festival has become a joyous annual rite of spring. More than 2,000 participants, along with amazing puppets and floats, parade down Bloomington Avenue telling a story and creating a moving theatrical performance. Thousands more line the streets to watch the parade and participate in day-long activities. Following the parade, a pageant and tree of life ceremony in Powderhorn Park ushers in the renewal of a new spring season. For more information or to get involved check the HOBT website:

   (Find the Mount Olive crew to watch the parade at the corner of Bloomington Ave. & 28th St. at Noon!)

Minnesota Brain Tumor 5K

     Inspired by Gene Hennig, the “Lean Mean Gene Machines” are raising research funds with the MN Brain Tumor 5K event on Sunday, May 17, 2015, at Lake Phalen in St. Paul.

     We have set a goal of $5000. One hundred percent of tax-deductible donations support the Musella Foundation for Brain Tumor Research and Information, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit public charity. Please visit our team fundraising page here:

     All are invited to join us for the non-competitive, fun run/walk! Families and dogs are welcome, provided that their caretakers assume responsibility. We are working on some fun “extras” as a part of the event, too. Feel free to contact Emily Hennig at, or Kate Teece  at with any questions. We hope you will join us!

- The Hennig family

Sign Up, Sign Up for Coffee!

     Take a turn and sign up to serve Sunday coffee. There are plenty of openings on the chart, so find a day that works for you and sign up!

News From the Neighborhood
Anna Kingman

     In an effort to share about the relationships being built through our interaction in the neighborhood, we will hear from the people who find support, relief, and help through Mount Olive.

Profiles: Exodus Lending
It’s one of the things you may never have to think about, but for many people it’s the only thing on their mind – Payday loans. April has been a momentous month on the front of battling ‘predatory lending’ and efforts to confront this immoral, but not illegal practice. With the work of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, JRLC, and many others, Exodus Lending was launched as an alternative and a relief for those trapped in these loans that exist to take advantage of them. Although the bill in the legislature was not brought up in this session, there is still much progress being made, but much much more to do.

An excerpt from a Southside Pride article by Ashley Pederson.
“On April 1, 2015, the nonprofit Exodus Lending opened for business. Exodus Lending refinances payday loans, and then offers financial counseling and a savings program. Four clients were enrolled in the program on the first day. Director Adam Rao said that, “In our first week of operations, we refinanced over $2,800 in payday debt, saving those clients nearly $12,800 over the next year in finance charges and fees.” Exodus Lending is the first of its kind in Minnesota. It is funded by individual donations and grants.

     If you want to enroll or donate, you can find more information at or 612-615-0067.

In Need of a Few Extra Helping Hands!

     Mount Olive will host dinner at Our Saviour’s Housing on Sunday, May 10, and a few more helpers are needed to host a lovely evening meal on this day, beginning at 6:45 pm.

     If you are able and willing, please contact Lora Dundek at

Opportunities to BE Involved

     Take part in the Congregation Meeting and Ministry Fair this Sunday, April 26, after the second liturgy. There will be a variety of ways to use your gifts and talents to share with your church and community.

     Thank you for all that you do, and please consider where your energies may be well used!

Spanish phrase:

      Part of sharing in community is understanding one another through language, culture, or experience. As we explore our community and get to know our neighbors, let's continue  with some helpful language lessons.

English: “Where is your family from?”
Spanish: ”De donde es su familia?” (Day-dohn-day es sue fah-meel-ee-ah)

Review: “How can I help you?’”
Spanish: “Como le puedo ayudar?” (Coh-mo lay pooh-ay-doh eye-u-dar)

     Go out and be fearlessly friendly folks!

National Lutheran Choir to Present Gretchaninoff’s Passion Week

     The National Lutheran Choir brings Alexander Gretchaninoff's glorious Passion Week to the majestic Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis and Zumbro Lutheran Church in Rochester.

Thursday, April 30, 2015 – 8pm
Basilica of Saint Mary (88 N 17th St., Minneapolis, MN 55403)

Saturday, May 2, 2015 – 7pm
Zumbro Lutheran Church (624 3rd Ave. SW, Rochester, MN 55902)

Tickets: $25 Adult - $23 Senior - $10 Students aged 17 and under FREE. For tickets or more information, call (888) 747-4589 or visit

Twin Cities AGO May Members Concert
Friday, May 1, 2015, 7:30 pm
St. Michael's Lutheran Church
9201 Normandale Boulevard
Bloomington, MN 55437

     The Twin Cities American Guild of Organists presents its 2015 TCAGO Members Concert. Resident Musician Jane Horn has invited us to visit St. Michael's Lutheran Church in Bloomington and share the sounds of the splendid 48-rank Reuter organ.

     Performers in this concert will be: Jennifer Anderson, Matt Bacon, Kim Crisler, Chris Ganza, Stephen Hamilton, Samuel Holmberg, and Jane Horn.

     They will play works of Widor, Dupré, Howells, Paulus, Chilcott, Ives, Pardini, Friedell, Bach, Kendrick, Drischner, Vaubourgoin, and Messiaen.

     This concert is free and open to the public. A reception follows the concert.

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