Here We Stand – April 2020 Update

Here We Stand Campaign Summer Events

by Ray Zavada

Two very popular summer events that support local congregational and school ministry and the Michigan District’s Here We Stand (HWS) campaign will again be offered this summer. Both offer congregations, schools, and even individual classrooms opportunities to raise significant funding for programs, operations, and the purchase of classroom supplies, among others.

Reformation 500 Walk, Run, Bike

This event is completed over several months to allow each participant to have the benefit of the entire summer to accomplish their exercise and fundraising goals. The typical period of time to participate is between May 1 and September 30, although some begin earlier and end later.

Participation is easy. Simply set a goal of completing 500 miles of exercise (or more or less miles depending upon your fitness level) during the time period you select. Then as you walk, run, or bike to reach your goal, you collect pledges or donations for the miles you will eventually complete. Then, upon reaching your goal, simply collect the monies you have raised through your efforts. We ask that you give 50% of the total monies you receive to your church, school, or other designated ministry, and send the other half to the HWS campaign of the Michigan District. It’s that easy to participate.

“We had an interesting team. Most of us were trying to get active, and this provided us an outlet.  500 miles seems like a high goal, as individuals, and it was intimidating. I regularly reminded the team members that the goal was as a team. However, two of us were able to hit that goal, as individuals! It felt good to be getting the exercise, training, and raising money for our district and our church. None of us had ever participated in an event like this, and I think we all would be happy to do it, again!” – Matthew Rose, Reformation 500 Team Leader

Some of the most successful participation in the Reformation 500 has seen members of congregations and schools form a team for a collective purpose or as a competition against others.

Here We Ride Bike Event

The Here We Ride bike event will again be hosted by Immanuel and Zion Lutheran Churches in Bay City, and will be under the leadership of Pastor Chris Garcia from Immanuel, who graciously chaired the event last year.

Event participants will gather on Saturday morning, August 1, on the grounds of Zion Lutheran Church for a reception, welcoming, opening devotion, and review of the Bay City trailway course being utilized for the ride. There will be ample food and refreshment stations located along the trailway. After a morning ride, the event will conclude midday back at Zion with a picnic and fellowship.

Here We Ride’s purpose is the same as the Reformation 500 event: to raise funds. Please see Reformation 500 section details. This is a family event that can accommodate children of all ages, and although raising funds to participate is not required, we hope that each participant will help support ministry in their church or school, and the HWS campaign of the Michigan District. Each participant receives a commemorative t-shirt.

For More Information

For more information or to register, please visit   or contact Linda Ekong in the Development office of the Michigan District at or by phone at 734.213.4265.      

Campaign Progress

Over $6.89 million in gifts, pledges, and congregational goals to date.

Congregation Highlights

We would like to thank Grace, Canton; Holy Cross, Jenison; Christ, Stevensville; and Hope, Warren for their recent gifts to the campaign.

We would also like to thank Church Extension Fund for its most recent $100,000 match.

April Newsletter