Immanuel Lutheran Church
The Gleaner Church Council Update
A publication of I am actually writing this on the 10th of February, and it has been 60 degrees
today. By the time this is published, many of you will have been on spring break,
Immanuel Lutheran Church and we have hopefully had more “pre-spring” weather. As of this date, I am still
320 S. Bradley waiting for the Synod to set up the Bridge Building sessions that we have all been
Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858 waiting for since last December. I can only image how busy the Synod office is,
(989) 773-4205 but this is something like waiting for the government to become involved in a
project. I plan to contact the Synod office tomorrow to see if we can get this
www.immanuelmp.com moving forward a little faster.
If you would like your name removed The Church Council has been spending a lot of time reviewing the budget and
from our mailing list, please let us know. comparing it with our current giving. We may have to make some adjustments in
our spending if the giving continues to be lower than anticipated. We appreciate
Layout and Editor: Melanie Zalewski all the help we are getting from the various committees to help us maintain a
Pastor: Mark Behenna balanced budget.
Parish Nurse: Dorothy Fetting
Interim Youth Director: Jan Podolsky I have had several church members ask that the weekly giving and attendance be
published in the bulletin like it was in the past. I have asked that these be placed
The Deadline for submitting articles and in the bulletin to make it easier for church members to be aware of the present
information is the 1st of each month.
giving and how it relates to the budgeted amount.
I would also like to encourage every member to ask a
Mission friend or acquaintance to attend a church service with
them. There are many people in the community that have
We welcome you into faith in Christ Jesus, no church home and are looking for a place to worship
we equip you with a faith that works in and find a church family. Also, think about inviting them to
real life, and send you to serve in the name attend one of our adult education sessions. These are
of Christ. proving to be very successful and a wonderful opportunity
to learn about and answer questions we may have about
Vision our faith, the Bible, and relationships, while having the
chance to become better acquainted with members of the
Jesus is Lord! Every person is nurtured in church.
building a strong relationship with God. Our
Thank you for your continued support and with everyone working together for
response to God’s grace is to faithfully care
Immanuel, we will continue to be an example to others of our love for Christ
for each other, our community, and the
and for one another.
——Gary Knight, Church Council President
Note: Since Gary wrote the update above, our Church Council entered into an
INSIDE: agreement to bring our Synod’s Bridge Building Program to Immanuel. Bridge
Page 2-- Pastor’s Page Builders bring a new opportunity for us all to weave an even, more loving
Pages 3, 5-7,9-10--News & atmosphere into the fabric of our congregation. This process will begin with a
Upcoming Events session open to all members on Saturday, April 18th. We will start at 10:00 am
Page 4-- Serving This and conclude at 4:00 pm. There will be a noon-time break with a light lunch
Month provided. Please mark your calendar! It is important that we have as many
members of Immanuel attend and take an active part in the program. More
Page 8-- Staying Connected
details will follow in the coming days which will outline the entire Bridge Builder
Page 10-11-- Health/Healing process. Please prayerfully consider taking part in this important first step. If
Update you want more information, contact any member of Church Council.
Dear brothers and sisters;
The presidential election was in November, our new president was inaugurated in January, and now as we enter the month of
March you would think that things political would have settled down. Of course, the political world is still in turmoil … but
then, it always has been in turmoil.
One of my favorite books on my shelf is Everett Fox’s special translation of First and Second Samuel entitled, “Give Us a King!”
Much of this work describes the call of the prophet Samuel as he acts as a conduit between God and the people of Israel
when they first demand to have a king of their own. The Israelites were jealous of the earthly kingdoms which surrounded
them. They had lost their trust in the God who brought them out of slavery in Egypt and into the Promised Land. The people
wanted a big, strong, handsome leader they could see and rally around; they wanted someone who their enemies could see and
who could garner respect by virtue of his appearance and eloquence. So God relented and gave His people what they wanted.
What they got was the growing disaster which was the reign of Saul (and almost all of the subsequent kings of Israel and Judah
As we enter the month of March with so much political controversy swirling around us, we also begin our Lenten journey.
Each Sunday in worship during this season we sing the same Verse just before we hear the Gospel lesson: “Return to the Lord,
your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love.” If we are to “return” it must be
because we have gone somewhere else. Where? Well, we have followed the idolatrous path of wanting a king of our own
making, for our own benefit.
The kings we choose nowadays are those who seek our allegiance through promises to
satisfy our wants, lead us successfully into and/or out of battle, and improve the moral
character of our society by the superiority of their personal qualities. (Please note that
these traits are held in common equally by leaders of both major American political parties
and all the minor parties of which I am aware, now and in the past few decades.) In return
we are called to turn over a significant amount of our income, participate in wars chosen by
our leaders by sacrificing precious lives and additional treasure, and ensure the legacy of
our “kings” is glowingly recorded for the benefit of future “kings” and the people who
In contrast, God makes one promise given at the time of your baptism, reinforced through
scripture, and echoed endlessly in the congregation of the saints that you have been saved eternally. Your most important need,
that of communion with God’s self, has already been met. This gift has been given to you freely and no amount of treasure has
been demanded. God does not call you into conflict at all; instead, He asks that you hear the quiet call of the Spirit to join
across all boundaries into one Body of Christ. This call certainly does not come at the forfeiture of treasure or life; this call is
life-giving and joy-filled. Finally, God leads quietly and invisibly. He has no concern for His personal legacy, which is assured
without human assistance. God has no successors to impress or influence. God’s gift to you of life eternal came through a
price only Jesus could pay – on the cross, in the grave, and in His ascension.
God’s “kingship” demands very things from us than do earthly kings – faithfulness, the sharing of the Gospel, and our calling of
other to God’s baptismal promise. Given the choice between the demands of the secular “kings” and God’s reign, shouldn’t we
all reorient our lives so that we “Return to the Lord our God?”
——In Him, Pr. Behenna 2
Lenten Worship Schedule
Mid-Week Lenten worship services will be held
on the following Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm:
Campus Ministry Committee Wants to Grow
March 5, 12, 19, 26 and April 2.
The Campus Ministry Committee is looking for new members. This
The Maundy Thursday worship service will be committee meets on the 4th Thursday of the month from 6:30-8:00 pm at
held April 9 at 6:30 pm. A Maundy Thursday Immanuel. As a committee we
Prayer Vigil will also be held this day beginning at generally plan events for the college
7:00 am and ending students and for the rest of the
with the service at college community who worships at
7:00 pm. If you would Immanuel. Other things we do
like to be a part of the includes sending information letters
Prayer Vigil, sign-up to new students, organizing and
sheets will be available distributing Goodie Bags for the
in the Narthex. college students during finals week, and offering small scholarships to
Good Friday (April 10) and Holy Saturday (April college students who provide service to Immanuel. If you think you
11) worship services will also take place at might be interested in serving the Immanuel community in this way, please
6:30 pm. contact Katrina Piatek-Jimenez at firstname.lastname@example.org or 779-7477. Both
college students and year-round members are welcome to join!
Easter Sunday falls on April 12. The Easter Vigil
worship service will begin at 7:00 am, and the
Easter Festival worship service will begin at First Communion Classes Are Coming!
10:00 am. An Easter Bruch will be served Do you have a child or children that are asking about First Communion?
between services this day. If you would like to At Immanuel Lutheran Church, we recommend that families with children
bring a dish to pass, sign-up sheets will be ages Kindergarten and higher, consider preparing their child for Holy
available in the Narthex. Communion. Most families begin to commune children around 2nd grade,
If you have any questions, contact Pastor Mark at but some children show interest far earlier, and for others, this is still too
773-4204. early. We ask you to pray for guidance in this important and special gift
from God. This is an exciting time for you and your child to celebrate and
grow in God’s love.
Lenten Devotionals Available for All
We are planning to schedule First Communion
A variety of Lenten devotionals are available for classes on Sunday mornings, between services
all ages in the Narthex. Please make plans to pick on the following dates:
up a devotional to deepen your relationship with
God. All Lenten devotional materials (as well as • Sunday, March 8th
Advent devotionals) are paid for with the money • Sunday, March 15th
we receive from the Meijer Rewards Program.
Thank you for using your reward card to make • Sunday, March 22nd
these programs possible. If you have any We ask that at least one parent be present with your child(ren) each
questions, please contact Jan Podolsky at time we gather. A part of the preparation will provide you with some
772-7762. tools that will help continue your child’s instruction. This course will help
parents fulfill their promises to raise their children in the covenant of
their baptism. By sharing in the preparation of Holy Communion, this
Lenten Offerings strengthens our growing relationship with God together with your child.
This year’s Lenten midweek service offerings will If you would like to sign up for the First Communion classes for your
be given toward the Community Compassion child or if you have questions regarding the preparation for receiving
Network Red Cross Mobile Food Pantry that Holy Communion, please get in touch with Pastor Mark (773-3204 or
will be coming to Immanuel on April 25, for use email@example.com) or Cindy Keller (772-5717 or
in feeding the needy of our county. Thank you firstname.lastname@example.org).
all for your generous offerings!
——God’s Blessings, Pastor Mark Behenna & Cindy Keller
Assisting Ministers—Contact Ruth Magnell (772-5896) Counters—Contact Hans Fetting (773-9514)
1st Dan Eversole 1st Jacque Jackson & John Lorand
8th Joe Caleca 8th LT March & John Warriner
Rose Prasad 15th Harry Plouff & Marcella Armstrong
22nd Dan Digmann 22 nd
John Emmons & Tom Endres
29th Marilyn Zorn 29th Chuck McCollom & Ben Prasad
Ushers—Contact Dave Ebert (433-2053) Nursery—
1st Steve MacGregor, Ed Berthold & John Emmons (9:00 am) 1st (9:00 am)
Tom Mueller (11:15 am) Susan Shock (11:15 am)
5th Dave Ebert (6:30 pm) 8 th
8th Bill Jensen, John Emmons & Ed Berthold (9:00 am) (11:15 am)
Dave Ebert (11:15 am) 15th (9:00 am)
John Emmons (6:30 pm) Susan Shock (11:15 am)
15th Dave Ebert, Larry Leemaster & Scott MacGregor (9:00 am) 22nd (9:00 am)
Dave Ebert & Tom Mueller (11:15 am) (11:15 am)
Tom Mueller (6:30 pm) 29 th
22nd Dave Ebert, Bill Jensen & Scott MacGregor (9:00 am)
Dave Ebert (11:15 am)
Sunday Snow Removal—
Dave Ebert (6:30 pm)
1st Paul Geisthardt
29th Larry Leemaster, Dave Ebert & John Emmons (9:00 am)
8th Gary Schwerin
Greeters—Contact Deb LaBlance (772-7899), Billie Plouff (772-0323) 22nd
1st The Keller Family (9:00 am) 29th
Harry & Billie Plouff (11:15 am)
Church Cleaning—Contact Carl Graef (772-5228)
8th Bert & Paula Krueger (9:00 am)
4th Margaret Skop
Allen & Susan Shock, Donald Poynter (11:15 am)
15th John & Cil Lorand (9:00 am)
22nd The Podolsky Family (9:00 am)
(11:15 am) Sunday School Teachers—Contact Cindy Keller (772-
Kate Henry & Mary Lou Fell (9:00 am) 5717)
The French Family (11:15 am) 1st Cindy Keller (Pre-K-1st Grades)
Steve & Jan Podolsky (2nd-6th Grades)
Cantors—Contact Dianne Granstra (832-8346)
Holly Hoffman (Pre-K-1st Grades)
1st Mark Sprang
Steve & Jan Podolsky (2nd-6th Grades)
8th Dennis Marshall
15th Cindy Keller (Pre-K-1st Grades)
Steve & Jan Podolsky (2nd-6th Grades)
22nd Totally His
Cindy Keller (Pre-K-1st Grades)
29th Beth Mundwiler
Steve & Jan Podolsky (2nd-6th Grades)
Altar Guild—Contact Bonnie Schaeffer (773-9738), Marcella 29 th
Holly Hoffman (Pre-K-1st Grades)
Armstrong (772-2497) Steve & Jan Podolsky (2nd-6th Grades)
1st Denise Little & Peggy Recker
8th Deb Reimer & Bonnie Berthold
15th Ruth Magnell & Sandy Warriner If you can fill any of the blank spaces,
Marilyn Zorn & Jan Kruska please let Melanie know by calling
29th Judy Emmons & Ann Ferguson
773-4204 or by email at
First United Methodist Church to
Host Food Truck at Immanuel
The First United Methodist Church in Mt.
Immanuel’s Mission Endowment Supports
Pleasant will be hosting a Community Local Organizations
Compassion Network Red Cross Food
Pantry Truck at Two long running mission projects at Immanuel had to be eliminated from
Immanuel on Saturday, budget approval in 2008; however, these projects were able to continue
March 28 from 8:00 am- through the use of earnings from the Immanuel Lutheran Church Mission
12:00 pm. If you would Endowment Fund. Earnings were used to continue paying for the secretarial
like to volunteer, contact support of the Christmas Outreach program and a monetary gift from
Carolyn Hoffman at Immanuel for the AIM (Association of
772-3408 or Interfaith Ministries) Friendship Classes
email@example.com. which have been supported for many
Address Change The Mission Endowment Fund
Committee fields requests for uses of
SPC Ross.John the fund’s earnings and forwards these
Co B 628th ASB requests on the Church Council for
6609 NA Fort Sill Blvd approval when merited. Principal is
Fort Sill, OK 73503-1800 never spent, only the earnings. If you
(until 3/30/09) are interested in leaving a legacy gift so
email: firstname.lastname@example.org that our church can continue its
mission in the future, contact any
member of the committee or Pastor
Mark for more information. Committee
members are: Tom Endres, Chair, Dave
Simon, Treasurer, Nancy Simon, Secretary,
Jan Eversole, Bill Gallaher, Tad Richards
and Gary Knight.
Celebrate This Baptism (Photo: Pr. Ron Vredeveld from AIM accepts the check from Immanuel’s Mission
Endowment Committee, presented by Pr. Mark Behenna.)
Tanner Dwight Goodrich was baptized at
the 9:00 am service on February 8. Tanner
is the son of Gabriel and Martha Goodrich.
Tanner’s sponsors are Mandy Cooley, Jack
2008-2009 Church Council Members
Spratto, Andrea Gastmeier, and Mike Mark Behenna email@example.com Pastor
Gastmeier. Tanner was also presented with Charlie Burke firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President
a commemorative medallion provided by Fellowship
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans. Kathy Gray email@example.com Stewardship
Len Jackson firstname.lastname@example.org Mission Service
Ian Kabell email@example.com Adult Education
Sue Keilitz firstname.lastname@example.org Finance
Gary Knight email@example.com President
Billie Plouff firstname.lastname@example.org Worship & Music
Sam Staples email@example.com Personnel
Mark Strandskov firstname.lastname@example.org Campus Ministry 5
Living Waters Ministries
Phil and Marty’s Excellent
What is Geothermal Energy? Adventure
This weekend retreat at Michi-Lu-Ca is
Geothermal energy. Does it sound a little farfetched? Maybe so, but it is the
for confirmation students to increase
wave of the future for cooling and warming homes. Cil Lorand and Dawn Moss
their understanding of what Lutheranism
chatted with Bonnie Schaeffer who, along with her husband Ken, had geothermal
means today. We will go back into the
heat installed in their home last fall.
16th century and visit Martin Luther and
Ken and Bonnie looked at the plans of three different manufacturers. Prices Phil Melanchton to experience the
ranged between $10,000 and $16,000. Interestingly, Bonnie stated the idea of happenings of those times. Led by Pastor
installing geothermal energy first came to them about 20-25 years ago. At that Will Stenke in March and Pastor Scott
time, the price was around $30,000. Torkko in April.
The reason the Schaeffers chose geothermal was because the price of propane You have two opportunities to be a part
gas kept rising. Ken and Bonnie were told by the company that they would of this adventure: March 20-22 or April
recover the price invested in about seven years. 24-26. Cost is $75 and includes meals,
Their electric bill has risen to more than $100-125 extra per month, however materials, and lodging. To register, send
that is offset by what they would have paid for the propane, down by more than your payment to Living Water Ministries,
one quarter. 3506 Garling Rd., Fairview, MI 48621.
Payments by credit card can be made by
How it works: Geothermal heating and cooling utilizes energy from the sun calling 989-848-5797 between 8:00 am
which has been absorbed into the ground. This stored energy below the earth’s and 4:00 pm on weekdays. Call or visit
surface is warmer than air temperature in winter and cooler in summer. By www.elcalivingwater.com if you have any
means of an underground loop of pipes circulating fluid, heat is transferred to or questions.
from the ground. Bonnie mentioned that a positive impact of installing this
system has been the feeling of a very even temperature throughout the house.
Another chat is planned with Bonnie in 2-3 months. She will let us know how
Living Waters Ministries
geothermal energy hopefully helped make the winter a little more bearable in Men’s Retreat
terms of cost and warmth. Come together March 20-22 at Michi-
Lu-Ca with men of all ages to take a
closer look at men in the Bible and in
contemporary life. Spend time
decompressing from the stress of life
with walks through the woods, fishing,
and in fellowship time with friends old
and new. Participate by choice in
planned activities including devotions,
Bible studies, and games. Whatever your
current path, you’ll return home
refreshed, relaxed, and refocused. Led by
Pastor George Oberle.
Cost is $75 and includes meals and
lodging. To register, send your payment to
Living Water Ministries, 3506 Garling Rd.,
Fairview, MI 48621. Payments by credit
card can be made by calling 989-848-
5797 between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm on
weekdays. Call or visit
www.elcalivingwater.com if you have any
ELCA Task Force Makes Recommendation on Ministry Policies and
Mel Woods Releases “Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust”
Brian Mitchell CHICAGO (ELCA) — The 15-member Task Force for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in
Sam Staples America (ELCA) Studies on Sexuality released February 19 a “Report and Recommendation
4th Barb Dunn on Ministry Policies” for the professional leadership of the church.
Tom Dillman On the basis of study and “listening to this church,” members of the task force developed a
7th Jack Freeman report and recommendation for the 2009 ELCA Churchwide Assembly — the church’s
Michael Caleca chief legislative body — to consider as regards the church’s current policy.
8th Susan Shock For Lutheran pastors and other professional leaders in the ELCA, the church requires that
Tracy McCollom sexual intimacy “be within the context of marriage.” The church understands marriage as
Sarah Freeman between a man and a woman. Gay and lesbian Lutherans serve as ordained ministers in the
ELCA but are expected to abstain from engaging in same-gender sexual intimacy.
9th Janice Fox
10th David Ross The report focuses on changing the policy that “ordained ministers who are homosexual in
11th Keelin Wheaton their self-understanding are expected to abstain from homosexual sexual relationships” —
12th Katherine Brown as stated in the ELCA’s “Vision and Expectations” for ordained ministers. The same
13th Rachel Schwerin expectation is expressed in policies for professional lay leaders of the church.
14th Joanne Golden
The task force’s report also highlights areas of disagreement and agreement among ELCA
Nicole Moss members regarding current policy. Some members of the ELCA support continuation of the
15th Amy Torgerson policy, and some members advocate for change. Lutherans have asserted “their positions
Cil Lorand with varying degrees of certainty,” the report said.
Nicholas Wentworth The task force acknowledged that there is neither “a consensus — a general agreement —
Margaret VanFaussien nor any emerging consensus” either within the ELCA or within other faith communities in
19th Samantha Umphrey North America, according to its report. The task force stated that ELCA members “must
21st Carl Graef seek a common way to live and serve in the midst of disagreements.”
Patrick Kirts “Through careful listening to this church and to one another other, task force members
Zachary Heinrich share a sober appreciation for the depth of disagreement on this matter. We also share a
22nd Doug Hill longing for church unity,” said the Rev. Peter Strommen, Shepherd of the Lake Lutheran
24th Nan Allen Church, Prior Lake, Minn., and task force chair. “Our hope is that a way can be found to live
Aiden Pendell in the unity of the gospel amidst our differences.”
25th Steve Smith
The task force recommended that a process begin with the churchwide assembly, “declaring
its intention about what it wants to do,” according to the report. It proposed four steps to
be taken consecutively. If the assembly agrees to the first, then the second, third and fourth
would be considered only if the preceding steps have been approved.
26th Sue Keilitz
27th Laura Richards The first step asks the assembly whether it is committed “to finding ways to allow
Christine Jurick congregations and synods that choose to do so to recognize, support, and hold publicly
28th Daniel Grant accountable lifelong, monogamous, same-gender relationships,” said the report.
Lou Saraiva The second step asks the assembly whether it is committed to finding a way for Lutherans in
Craig Torgerson committed, same-gender relationships to serve as ELCA professional leaders — clergy,
29th Paula Krueger associates in ministry, diaconal ministers and deaconesses.
Zachary Kramer If steps one and two are accepted, step three asks the assembly to commit to implementing
Linda Salisbury steps one and two “in such a way that all this church bear the burdens of the other, love the
Ethan Moss neighbor, and respect the bound conscience of any with whom they disagree.” According to
Morgan Oswald the report, “decisions about policy that serve only the interests of one or another group will
31st Joy Doremire not be acceptable.”
Kirk Torgerson 7
(“ELCA” continued on p. 9...)
Immanuel Lutheran Church,
This is so belated for me to write to some of you. I hesitate to write to each of the “givers” in our lives, but I keep
being reminded of the times in the past that I have taken to send a thank you. I have felt a wonderful relief as I finally
officially thanked those who have given to our family.
I have so many things vying for my time, just like we all do. I try to keep up on my family’s household duties. I have
been making it a priority for a number of years to learn about educating my children. This year, especially, I’ve been
consumed with learning along with my children. Also, I strongly support my husband in his going back to school for
his Master’s Degree.
So, now I write a quick thank you for giving my family a gift certificate to Ric’s Food Center last year. We appreciated
——Much Thanks, Sherrie & Ken
Dear Immanuel Friends,
Thank you so much for all the cards, prayers, telephone calls, and good thoughts you sent my way during my recent
back surgery. I’m also very thankful for the Chefs with Spirit who kept us well-fed when I was unable to get up and
cook. You all helped to make my recovery that much easier. I’m very lucky to have such a wonderful “family” to
count on when needed.
——With Love, Melanie (& Mike) Zalewski
Dear Immanuel Family,
Thank you for the comfort and support you gave when my mom passed. It meant a great deal to our family to know
so many kept us in their thoughts and prayers. As many of you already realize, the loss of a loved one leaves such a
void. But it is a precious gift to know that mom is with our Lord and Savior.
——God Bless, Billie & Harry Plouff & the Mary Neil Family
Please allow me to express the gratitude of Lutheran Social Services of Michigan for your generous donation. LSSM
appreciates your members’ commitment to serving people as an expression of the love of Christ.
Your congregation’s contribution allows LSSM to provide much needed services to the more than 23,000 children,
homeless families, older adults, persons with disabilities, and refugees we serve. Each of these individuals would
personally thank you if they could, but instead I will thank you on their behalf.
LSSM’s vision is creating a community that upholds human dignity, decries complacency, and affirms equality and
justice. Your support is one way we further our shared ministry of “Compassion in Action.” Your congregation’s
participation helps to strengthen and multiply our ability to lessen human suffering. Thank you for your leadership
role in maintaining and increasing that support.
I look forward to continuing a long-lasting relationship. Again, thank you for your confidence in LSSM and your
caring for others.
——Cordially, Richard K. Martin, Vice President for Advancement, LSSM
Dear Members of Immanuel,
We would like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to you for your very generous gift for AIM’s
We appreciate your continued concern and dedicated support for AIM. We also value your prayers and
encouragement as we serve on behalf of you, your church, and other churches in our community, enabling people
with developmental disabilities to experience the love of God and to grow in their faith.
Thanks for being life-long partners with us. As we continue to serve in the name of Jesus, we pray for God’s
guidance of our ministry and God’s continued blessings for you and your church.
——Serving Jesus with you, Rev. Ron Vredeveld & Thomas H. Shepard
(“ELCA” Continued from p. 7...)
Step four presents a proposal for how the
ELCA could move toward change “in a way
Upcoming Events Living Waters Ministries
that respects the bound conscience of all,” Scrapbooking Retreat
said the report. The fourth step is
different from the previous steps in that it Pray! Crop! Pray! Lavish yourself in a weekend getaway at Michi-Lu-Ca on
is “not simply a commitment in principle, March 27-29 with a scrapbooking table in a beautiful rustic environment.
but makes a specific recommendation for Exchange scrapbook secrets and faith stories as you layout the perfect page.
flexibility within existing structures and Work till dawn or sleep all day, but don’t worry about the cooking, because
practices of this church to allow for we’ll take care of that! Bring your daughter, mother, or friend and crop till
people in publicly accountable, lifelong, you drop! Led by Pastor Sherry McGuffin.
monogamous, same- gender relationships Spaces are filling up quickly, so don’t wait too
to be approved” for professional service in long to save your spot! Cost is $75 and
the ELCA, stated the report. includes meals and lodging. To register, send
The task force’s report and your payment to Living Water Ministries, 3506
recommendation on ministry policies Garling Rd., Fairview, MI 48621. Payments by
completes a directive from the 2007 ELCA credit card can be made by calling 989-848-
Churchwide Assembly to address and 5797 between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm on
make recommendations on changes to weekdays. Call or visit
policies that preclude Lutherans in www.elcalivingwater.com if you have any
committed, same-gender unions from the questions.
ELCA’s professional rosters.
The 2001 assembly directed the church to
study homosexuality with reference to A Man from Kenya
two topics — the blessing of same-sex
Since 1998 David
unions and the “ordination, consecration
Zarembka has been
and commissioning of people in committed,
the Coordinator of
same sex unions.” It also asked the church
the African Great
to develop a social statement on human
Lakes Initiative, a
project of the
“Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust” — the Friends of Peace
proposed social statement developed by Teams. He has
the task force — was also released decades of
February 19. The proposed social experience in Africa,
statement and the report and and he currently
recommendation on ministry policies are lives in Lumakanda in
two separate documents. The documents Western Kenya.
are open to review by the ELCA Church
David will speak
Council—the church’s board of
directors—when it meets here March 27-
after deadly conflict:
30, and they will be considered by the
2009 ELCA Churchwide Assembly, Aug.
17-23, in Minneapolis.
The task force’s “Report and and Kenya” on
Recommendations on Ministry Policies” March 10 at 7:30 pm
and “Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust” is at Wesley
available at http://www.ELCA.org/ Foundation, 1400 S.
faithfuljouney on the ELCA Web site. Washington, Mt.
Pleasant. All are
invited to this event. 9
Upcoming Events Immanuel Youth Participate in Quake
Free Foot Screening
Six of Immanuel’s young people attended the Youth Encounter Quake this January By Mark D. Young, Podiatrist
in Lansing. Quake is a Christian convention for teens in grades 7-9. Our teens had When: March 19 from
a wonderful time in worship and in fellowship with about 300 other students their 9:00 am-4:30 pm by
age. This was certainly a growing experience for our youth. Check out the photos appointment
below that were taken during “Wacky Dress Night.” Where: 405 S. Mission
St., Mt. Pleasant
Call 779-5606 to register.
Free Skin Cancer Screening
By Kris Harrison, PA-C
When: March 25 from 9:00-11:30 am
Where: CMCH Medical Arts Building,
Call 779-5688 to register.
Adult Grief Support Offered
Woodland Hospice (formerly Hospice
of Central Michigan) and the Morey
Bereavement Center offer an Adult
Grief Group on the first and third
Tuesday of each month from 5:30-
Woodland Hospice is also hosting a
Grief Support Social Group on the
second Friday of each month from
11:30 am-1:30 pm. The first half of the
group will be a social hour with a
potluck lunch. The second hour will
consist of a presentation and group
discussion. Each month a different
topic of interest will be presented.
There is no charge for attending these
groups. All meetings will be held at the
Woodland Hospice & Morey
Bereavement Center, 2597 S. Meridian
Rd., in Mt. Pleasant.
For more information contact Lisa at
By Dorothy Fetting,
Parish Nurse Update
Faith Community Nursing: I recently attended the Spiritual Care Seminar sponsored by the Mid Michigan Medical
Center. Rabbi Chave Bhale, from northern Michigan, used story and reflection to share her ideas about enhancing a climate
of healing through joy, honesty, and spiritual practice. She emphasized how our own attitudes, values, and assumptions affect
our presence in caring for others. She also stressed the importance of self knowledge which deepens one’s ability to work
as a member of an interdisciplinary team.
March is National Nutrition Month: The Harvard
School of Public Health has developed an alternative to
the USDA Food Guide Pyramid, called the Healthy Eating
Pyramid. It is a guide to choosing a healthy diet, as well as
exercise and weight control. Five quick tips from this
1. Start with regular exercise.
2. Focus on food, not servings or grams.
3. Go with plants! A plant based diet is healthiest.
Choose plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains,
and healthy fats like olive oil and canola oil.
4. Cut way back on red meat, refined grains,
potatoes, starchy vegetables, sugary drinks, and
salty snacks. If you eat meat, fish and poultry are
the best choices.
5. Take a daily multivitamin.
For additional information, visit
Thought to Ponder: Now that the season of Lent has begun, it is a good time to give up something that we enjoy and
give to others. The gift could be our time, talents, or worldly goods to share, rather than accumulating more “stuff.”
By caring, accepting, and forgiving, perhaps we can begin to understand what Christ meant by the Kingdom of God on
Make a Date to Donate Blood: All donated blood is tested for transmitted diseases. You CANNOT contract HIV or
any other infectious disease by giving blood. There is no upper age limit to those who wish to donate blood.
Chefs with Spirit: This dedicated group continues to serve those in need with food and Christian love. They have
provided 18 meals to 5 household in 2009. If you would like to help or know of someone in need, please contact Bonnie
Schaeffer at 773-9738 or leave a voice mail message at church at 773-4204.
Home Communion is provided to shut-ins on the second Sunday of each month. Servers go out after the 9:00 am
service. It is a very rewarding experience. If you wish to volunteer, please contact Marilyn Zorn at 773-9637.
Medical Equipment Inventory: We have an ample supply of items available for loan to Immanuel members and friends
on a short or long-term basis. If you know of someone in need, please call Paul Kruska at 828-5103, Dorothy Fetting at
773-9514, or the church office at 773-4204 between 8:00 am-5:00 pm, Monday-Friday.
The next Congregational Life/Health/Healing Team Meeting will be Tuesday, April 14 at 4:30 pm in the Concordia
classroom. We will not meet in March.