A Message from the President – June 2019

Summer, 2019

Dear Brothers in Christ,

It was a great joy being with most of you during the month of May at our three Regional Pastors’ Conferences and Circuit Visitors’ Conference. It was good to be with you and thank you to all who worked diligently to make these conferences a wonderful success.

At each of the conferences I had the privilege of giving my President’s Report and bringing you up to date on what is happening in the Michigan District and Synod. I would like to summarize some of what I shared about the Here We Stand (HWS) campaign. We are now halfway through the 5-year Congregational Phase of the campaign.

To date, God has blessed us with over $6 million in total campaign gifts and commitments for the four initiatives of the campaign. A little over $2 million has been given by Michigan District congregations, and the remaining $4 million-plus has been given by individuals. Today we stand at 151 participating congregations, or just over 41% participation rate. We have already attained a good level of participation, and are now striving for a very good level, which occurs at the 50% tier. We are very optimistic that level will be reached. I would like to encourage each congregation that has yet to become involved to please prayerfully do so in the very near future. Once we reach 50% participation, we will set our sights on reaching 60%, an excellent level of involvement. Please become involved this year if you are able because each of the initiatives (Professional Church Worker Scholarships, Innovative Missional Ministry, Endowment Fund, International Ministries) are important to you, your congregation, and conservative biblical, confessional Lutherans in the Michigan District.

Ray Zavada, our Campaign Director, can send you a list of ideas to become involved without having to include HWS in your regular operating budget. These are all things congregations in the Michigan District are currently doing or have already done to fulfill their commitments to HWS. Ray can be reached at ray.zavada@michigandistrict.org or at 734.213.4264. I know Ray is always happy to come to your church for a visit and go over these ideas with you.

I would like to thank Church Extension Fund for recently providing us with their fifth $100,000 matching gift when we reached the $5.4 level of cash received. With your continued support of HWS, we are prayerful that additional matching gifts will be received in the future. These matching funds are only one of many ways CEF supports Michigan District Mission and Ministries. We are grateful for the great partnership we share with Jim Saalfeld, John Bates, and the entire CEF team.

Finally, please remember the upcoming HWS summer events. First, the Here We Ride bike event will take place on Saturday, August 3, hosted by Immanuel and Zion in Bay City. You can learn more and register to participate in this event at herewestand.michigandistrict.org/hereweride.

The second event is the Reformation 500 Walk, Run, or Bike Event. This event can take place anywhere. It can be accomplished individually, with a team, or an entire congregation or school. For more information and to register, please visit herewestand.michigandistrict.org/thereformation500.

These two events provide an excellent opportunity to become a participant in HWS while benefiting your church, school, or classroom as well. Several teachers have raised between $1,000 and $2,000 for their classrooms in past events, while several congregations have fulfilled their pledges to HWS in this manner, including one congregation that raised over $25,000 for both HWS and their church over two summers of participating in the Reformation 500 event. Please give these events some thought as to how you could participate and raise some funds for your church or school and HWS.

Due to vacation, the LCMS National Youth Gathering, and the Synodical convention in Tampa, the next president’s update letter will be sent in September. In the meantime, continued blessings upon you, your family, and your ministry. I look forward to the next time we connect.

Your brother in Christ,

maier_signature

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

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