A Message from the President – June 2016

June, 2016
Here We Stand Campaign
President’s letter

Dear Fellow Servants of Christ,

By the grace of God significant progress continues to be made with the Here We Stand campaign. We praise God for what He is doing to bless the campaign, as He allows His children to make an impact on the District and beyond through the four campaign initiatives. The following is a summary of recent campaign activity.

Circuit Coordinator and Congregational Workshops  ̶  Beginning in January there were five presentations specifically designed for the 45 Circuit Coordinators. Upon their conclusion, Ray Zavada and I began the workshop series for pastors and congregational leaders. These began on February 11 and concluded on May 19 with a workshop that was added at the end of our schedule as a make-up session for anyone who missed their regional workshop and still wanted to attend. During that period of time, a total of 20 workshop presentations were made.

These 25 workshops were attended by approximately 145 congregations and 450 pastors and congregational leaders. Ray and I are most grateful for the special effort you made to attend one of the presentations. We truly enjoyed conducting the workshops and it was our prayer that you found them to be engaging and informative.

I also want to note that, at the two regional Pastors’ Conferences and the Circuit Visitors Conference in mid-May, a number of pastors shared with us that although they did not attend a regional congregational workshop, their congregations had already made participation decisions for Here We Stand. This was very encouraging to hear! If you happen to be a congregation that falls into this category, please drop Ray or myself a note and let us know your intentions. This information will be very helpful as we make follow-up contacts in the months ahead.

Congregational Participation  ̶  With the congregational workshop phase completed, we are entering the congregational decision phase. In the weeks and months ahead, congregations will be making participation decisions. Many will be made during the fall of 2016 as next year’s budgets are being discussed and set. Fifteen congregations have blessed the campaign already by becoming early responding congregations. If your congregation has already reached a participation decision, you also do not need to wait until the end of the year to declare your participation. Please join the other early responders.

Congregational Video  ̶  Ray Zavada and I, with the expertise of our Communications Department, will be videotaping an abbreviated version of our Congregational Workshop presentation.  It will be  designed to show to congregational leadership, or to the entire congregation. Our goal is to make this video presentation about 45 minutes or less in length so it can be shown during a council meeting, between services, or during a Bible study hour. We will let you know when the video becomes available.

Workshop Power Point  ̶  We also want you to know that the Congregational Workshop Power Point that was used at the previous 25 workshops is now available online for your use. You can access this power point on our website or by contacting Linda Ekong at linda.ekong@michigandistrict.org or by calling 734.665.3791, extension 265, and she can email/mail a copy to you.

Campaign Progress  ̶  The Here We Stand campaign has been blessed with early success. The following provides you a snapshot of progress to date.

A “By the Numbers” look at the Here We Stand Campaign  (through June 13, 2016)

$1,836,444.22                     Total campaign gifts, pledges, and goals
$1,193,500.91                     Cash received
$   642,943.31                     Outstanding commitments (pledges and goals)

327                                         Total Contributors
312                                         Individual Contributors
15                                           Congregations Contributing
4%                                          % of Michigan District Congregations currently participating

$292,574.02                        Total given/pledged for Professional Church Worker Scholarships
$833,272.17                        Total given/pledged for Innovative Missional Ministry
$252,561.02                        Total given/pledged for Michigan District Endowment
$458,037.01                        Total given/pledged for International Ministries

Michigan District Church Extension Fund Matching Gift  ̶  CEF is graciously and generously providing a 10% match for every $1 million in cash received. What a privilege to share that, since the campaign has surpassed its first $1 million in cash received, CEF has made its first $100,000 matching gift! We are grateful to Dr. Ron Steinke, CEF President and CEO, and the CEF Board of Directors, for making this possible. When you see Dr. Steinke, or a CEF Board member, please share your appreciation as well. With your continued support and participation, we look forward to receiving a second matching gift from CEF yet this year.

Campaign Materials  ̶  If you need any campaign materials to assist you in your communications efforts in your congregation, please visit https://herewestand.michigandistrict.org/getinvolved for downloadable versions, or contact Linda Ekong.

God be praised for what He is—and will be—accomplishing in, and through, the Here We Stand campaign. Prayerfully consider what your congregation, or what you personally, can and will do, to help the campaign take another step toward reaching its goal of $10 million. Together, this goal is very attainable and much can be accomplished for the sake of the Kingdom for generations to come! Don’t  hesitate to contact Ray Zavada (ray.zavada@michigandistrict.org) or his assistant Linda Ekong.

May God continue to bless you and your ministry in the community where He has placed you to serve.

Your brother in Christ,


Rev. Dr. David P.E. Maier, President
Michigan District, LCMS

Support Here We Stand