Here We Stand – July 2020 Update

Being Lutheran by Lori Wieneke

My husband and I have been blessed to have been raised in the Lutheran church since birth. We have grown in our faith, and over the years have become members of Lutheran church communities that love Jesus and love others deeply and want to share the Gospel with people outside of our own church walls. Unfortunately, when some people find out we are Lutheran, they have openly shared that they’ve perceived our church body as an exclusive, “stuffy” denomination. That is just one of the many reasons that led us to faithfully commit to the Here We Stand campaign, because we see “being Lutheran” as living joy-filled, passionate lives helping others learn just how “wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ” (Ephesians 3:18).

A few years ago I was blessed to hear President Michael Newman from the Texas District speak on our Lutheran heritage and our missionaries who reached out to the world. His message spoke to me deeply and made me wonder how God could use me personally as a leader in our church and our family to “GO!”, to look for ways to reach others and not simply wait for people to come through our doors.

As a Board member of the Michigan District and a called Children’s Ministry Director, I believe the Here We Stand campaign is a fantastic way to help pass on the Gospel message to others. With the Church Worker Scholarships, people can follow their call to be missionaries in their field who might not have been able to do so without these generous financial contributions. I personally love the Innovative Missional Ministry emphasis of the campaign because I fully believe unchurched people don’t look for a church building; however, when they are wholly loved and cared for by people in their community being the hands and feet of Jesus without expecting anything in return, they get to experience that same grace and mercy we have been blessed to receive.

Our church, St. Matthew Lutheran in Grand Rapids, also believes strongly in contributing to Here We Stand and feels blessed to be able to make a difference following our church’s mission of being “Followers of Jesus, Wherever We Are.” With the changing times and the recent COVID-19 pandemic, I’m personally excited to see how our churches and the great leadership of our Michigan District uses the resources we have given to carry out its mission and ministry to the fullest in new ways.

Mrs. Lori S. Wieneke serves on the staff of St. Matthew, Grand Rapids and the Board of Directors for the Michigan District, LCMS.

Campaign Progress

Over $7 million in gifts, pledges, and congregational goals to date.

Congregation Highlights

We would like to thank St. John, Cheboygan; Grace, Coopersville; St. Lorenz, Frankenmuth; Our Savior, Lansing; Trinity, Newberry; Christ, Stevensville; St. Matthew, Westland; and Trinity, Wyandotte for their recent gifts to the campaign.

July 2020 Newsletter