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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Olive Branch, 9/16/15

Accent on Worship

Ordinarily, we sing…

     This past Sunday we began our use of ELW’s setting 1.  (pages 94-115).   During “Ordinary Time” that doesn’t mean too much, for now just the Sanctus (Holy, Holy, Holy) and Agnus Dei (Lamb of God).   Over the course of the next calendar year, we will add more canticles from it as they become seasonally appro-priate.

     I have four categories for the things we sing in each Sunday Eucharist – in order of how often songs are repeated.  There is a practical nature to this – folks tend to like to sing what they know.  In addition, the percentage of those who can read music (different for each community, to be sure) has an effect on how heavily we lean on this system.        

1. Ordinary.  These are the songs of the liturgy, and the idea is that we sing them every week – to the extent that we know them from memory.  That which gets chosen needs to be a long term decision – for weeks at a time at Mount Olive.  For some communities, perhaps years!  Ideally, they become the best remembered songs, and we can teach them to the children with some confidence and hope that when they grow up, the church will still be singing them.  They are Kyrie, Hymn of Praise (either Glory to God, or This is the Feast), the Alleluia, Great Thanksgiving, Lamb of God, and Now, Lord.    ELW has 10 settings of the ordinary.  It is NOT the intention that every community learn all 10 – but that the most appropriate settings for them are learned and relied upon.

2. Hymns.  These change every week, chosen to reflect and support the Word of God in the lessons appointed to the day.  But here an effort is made to balance known with unknown, another balance that looks different from community to community.  This is a repertoire that is built, nurtured, and also feeds an important memory bank over a long haul.

3.  Psalms.  These represent the oldest of songs sung by the people of God.  While we don’t have the original melodies, we create them each week for these most ancient of prayers.  Be-cause they change every week (as appointed) the choir tends to have a larger involvement.  For now, it seems important for the entire assembly to sing the verses, getting these texts into their souls and mouths.  The choir can also sing a more involved antiphon (which I usually also compose for them.  That’s what Cantors do.)

4.  Propers and anthems, which change week to week and are specific to the lessons.  This sub-set is left for the choir, since they get to rehearse.

     Because Mount Olive has a higher percentage of music readers, the quotient of familiar to new is a bit different.  For you note readers, you are called to be helpers to those who aren’t, through strong singing.  You can trust that what the music says, that is what we will sing (unless I make a mistake – which has been known to happen).

     So until Advent 1 – the songs we ordinarily will sing will be the Great Thanksgiving and Lamb of God from ELW setting 1.  Come Epiphany, we will add the Glory to God.  Come Easter, we will add the Kyrie and This is the Feast.

     Find that which makes these melodies tick, and run with it!  What do the words say?  Where are the high notes?  Which parts are sung energetically and which more inwardly?   Then meaningfully sing them that way!

     For you non-music readers – let us carry you until you feel these, and remember – we will “ordinarily” be singing these songs now.  You’ll have more chances.

- Cantor Cherwien 

Sunday Readings

September 20, 2015: 17th Sunday after Pentecost, 25B
Jeremiah 11:18-20
Psalm 54
James 3:1-3—4:3, 7-8a
Mark 9:30-37

September 27, 2015: 18th Sunday after Pentecost, 26B
Numbers 11:4-6, 10-16, 24-29
Psalm 19:7-14
James 5:13-20

Dust Off Your Nametags!

     With the arrival of our new Vicar, Anna Helgen, at Mount Olive, please consider wearing your nametag for the coming six weeks.

      This act of hospitality will help Anna to better serve in our midst.  If your nametag is missing or worn out, please contact the church office for a new one.  There are holders with clips in the narthex under the name tag board for those who prefer an alternative to the original pin style.

Thursday Bible Study Begins Tomorrow!

     The Thursday evening Bible Study returns this fall on Thursday, Sept. 17, 6:00 pm, for a six-week study titled “The Last Enemy,” led by Pr. Crippen.  The focus is on mortality, death and dying, and how the Scriptures guide us.

     As always, we will begin each session with a light supper beginning at 6 pm.      

Restoration 2015 Continues

     If you have been to the church since August 31, you know the work to restore our beautiful church is well underway! Water leaks were beginning to threaten the safety of the structure.

     Workers are busy every day on the masonry, roof, and, soon, the stained glass windows to make the building safe and healthy again before the onset of winter.

     Follow the Renovations 2015 blog for weekly updates and new information on the project:  There is a link to the blog on the front page of the church website

     On August 30 the congregation in a special meeting authorized the Vestry to borrow up to $275,000 to pay for this restoration.

     We aren’t intending a full-fledged capital appeal in connection with this work. There are numerous other projects for improving our facilities just now in the early stages of planning. As these plans come together, there will certainly be such an appeal. While that planning continues, we will carry a small debt.

     Many have stated they would like to give toward the restoration project going on, so less money has to be borrowed. Several members have already done so. This is the kind of spirit that is typical of Mount Olive.

     These gifts are important. Every dollar given now is a dollar we won’t need to borrow.
A dedicated fund entitled “Restoration 2015” has been established. If you would like to contribute, please make your donation payable to Mount Olive Lutheran Church and clearly note its purpose as “Restoration 2015.” Send or bring it to the church office or place it in the offering plate any Sunday morning.

MFA First Event of the New Season 
Sunday, September 20, 4 pm

    The Charles Lazarus Quartet will kick off the new season of Music & Fine Arts events with “lovejoy,” feel-good love songs with a groovy twist. Come and invite your friends to hear this sneak peek of Lazarus’ soon-to-be-released CD, lovejoy, a captivating mix of originals and re-imagined classics.  This event is free and open to the public.

     A reception follows the concert in the Chapel Lounge.

Music and Fine Arts Series 2015-2016

Support Mount Olive Music & Fine Arts!

     Members of the Music and Fine Arts Committee will be in the narthex soliciting your support for one more Sunday, this week, September 20.

     These events are offered as a gift to the community free of charge, as a result of your support.

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   October 10 meeting they will read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, by Carson McCullers, and for November 14, they will read The Elegance of the Hedgehog, by Muriel Barbery.

Adult Forum

     Adult Forum is held between the liturgies on Sunday mornings, beginning at approximately 9:30 am.

September 20: "Sabbatical Reflections," led by Pastor Joseph Crippen - From the day after Easter 2015 until July 20, Mount Olive Pastor Joseph Crippen was on a sabbatical leave granted by the Vestry. Pastor Crippen will share some of his adventures during, and impressions from, his time of study and rest.

September 27: "Harriet Beecher Stowe: A Spiritual Life," led by Nancy Koester - Nancy Koester, former Associate Pastor at St. Anthony Park Lutheran Church in St. Paul, was awarded the Minnesota Book Award for general nonfiction in April 2015 for her spiritual biography of Harriet Beecher Stowe, the author of Uncle Tom's Cabin. Nancy is currently preparing for a book on Sojourner Truth, and her Introduction to the History of Christianity in the United States was released by Fortress Press in August.

S. Minneapolis Coalition for Grief Support Fall Series

Our Lady of Peace Church
5426 12th Avenue South, Minneapolis 55417
Phone:  612-824-2111

6:15 - 8:00 pm                    
Thursdays, September 24 - December 3                      

For more information, please call Norine Larson at 952-925-2437 or TRUST at 612-827-6159.

Feast of St. Francis
Sunday, October 4
1:30 pm
Blessing of Animals
Bring your pets to this annual service of blessing!

Sign Up, Sign Up for Coffee!

As you may have noticed on the coffee hour sign-up sheet in the East Assembly Room, coffee hour is seriously in need of hosts in the coming weeks! If you haven’t taken a turn recently (or at all?), now is the time to sign up! If you have questions about this opportunity, please call Carla Manuel, 612-521-3952.

News From the Neighborhood                           
Anna Kingman                

Tutoring Program Update

     Due to quite a few circumstances all at once, the Neighborhood Ministries Committee and I are choosing to postpone the tutoring program for the time being and will make a decision by October 3 at the next Neighborhood Ministries Committee meeting on how and whether to move forward with the program for this school year.  We lost 3/4 our tutors from last year for a variety of reasons, and have an upcoming remodel downstairs.  So we're going to just take a moment and collect ourselves. There is consideration for the needs of the community and the valuable relationships that we're building through this ministry, but we must also consider the nearby resources already available to this group and whether it is the right program at this moment for the time and talents of the members of this church. Though we haven't made any final decisions yet, we are looking into the opportunities to transform or adjust our program to best fit the personality of the neighborhood as well as the character and passions of this congregation.

     A letter is being sent to previous participants and their families to explain the delay in starting as well as to invite them to participate in other Mount Olive activities such as the Children's Choir and Youth group events. If you are interested in continuing this program and are able to become a tutor please contact me at 612-827-5910 or by email to Also, if you have any motivations for helping create and shape this program in what it can become for the future please let me know!

- Anna Kingman, Coordinator of Neighborhood Outreach and Ministry
- Carol Austermann, Director of Neighborhood Ministries Committee

Another Neighborhood Garage Sale – This Saturday

Saturday, September 19, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
1. All vendor spots are now filled!
2. Be a shopper
3. Be a volunteer—we need help setting up and taking down plus monitors and guides throughout
    the day
4. Be a supporter and help spread the word.

     Questions?  Contact any Open Space team member to join in or for further information:  Tim Pipkorn, Larry Duncan, George Ferguson, Connie Marty, Julie Manuel, Carol Austermann, Paul Nixdorf, Patsy Holtmeier, and Anna Kingman.

     “Open Space”is a part of Neighborhood Ministries.

We need some strong arms to help carry a few things up from the basement for the sale. If you can help, please come on Saturday at 8:30 a.m.!

Mount Olive is a Member of TRUST 

     TRUST (Toward Renewed Unity in Service Together) is a coalition of churches in Minneapolis that provides such services as Meals on Wheels, Chore Services for seniors, parish nurse programs and meals for homeless individuals.  Mount Olive has been a TRUST partner church since 2011, and has benefited from several programs including the youth program in which we participate with our children.  This is a worthwhile organization which extends our reach into our neighborhood in a meaningful and faith-filled way.

     Some of you have expressed concerns about recent fundraising letters received from TRUST which came to your homes enclosed in Mount Olive envelopes.  At the Vestry meeting this week it was explained why this has happened.  As part of our membership in TRUST, we agree to assist them with fundraising.   However, by policy Mount Olive does not give out members' mailing addresses.  In order to meet both our obligation to TRUST and protect our members' privacy, we send out the TRUST letter in Mount Olive envelopes.   The Vestry wants to assure you that your mailing address has not been shared, but we also want to encourage you to consider a gift to TRUST to support their very worthy work.

     If you have questions about the policy related to mailing addresses, please speak with Lora Dundek or Pr. Crippen.   If you'd like to know more about TRUST, speak with Anna Kingman or Carol Austermann, or peek at TRUST's website at

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