The Small and Rural Church – A Future of Hope

Whether located in towns, the farmlands, or out in the prairie, the North American Lutheran Church’s mainstay is small and rural congregations. While other faith communities look for ways to close and minimize these churches, the NALC values these parishes as they continue to seek avenues to enhance ministry and make disciples for Jesus. Like all other congregations, small and rural missions face both challenges and opportunities.

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From Membership to Mission

Why I Don’t Like Organic Ministry
(But I Practice Organic Ministry)

I must be honest. I was bored by the roundtable discussion on disciplemaking . . . until Jeff spoke. “I should be more intentional about disciplemaking” he said, “but I tend to wing it. I guess I’m more organic in my approach.”

Carol immediately jumped in on Jeff’s comment: “I invite friends from the neighborhood over to fold laundry and talk about Jesus and the Bible. This is how I disciple others. It’s pretty organic.” I liked the discussion on flexibility and friendship but what caught my attention was the word “organic.”

Maybe my gray hair is showing but I believe organic disciplemaking is more than an in-the-moment and seemingly haphazard approach to helping people grow. I think we need some greater clarity on what we mean by “organic.”

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From Membership to Mission – Life to Life Discipleship


I have had the wonderful honor and privilege of discipling many women over the past 20 years. If I were to capture the great joy this has been for me, it would be to echo this verse in Ephesians: 

Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence.  (Ephesians 3: 12 NLT) 

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Jesus At Work – At The Hotel Breakfast Table

The young man, a waiter, appeared to be listening to us as we were talking over breakfast at our hotel. It was around 7 a.m. on the second day of our recent District Convocation, and I was sitting at a table with Bill Oehlschlager from Lutheran Lay Renewal and Wayne Knerr from Emanuel, Elmer, N.J. Bill was telling Wayne and me about his Christian ministry experiences over the past several years. 

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Back To School – Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch

Knowing someone is thinking about you means a lot. This is especially true for children on their first day of school. Help our Ranch kids feel supported by writing them a note of encouragement for their first day! Our goal is for each student to receive at least one card.

Follow this link to write your special message:

Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch is a recognized ministry of the NALC. For more information or to partner, please visit:

2018 Holiday Bed Delivery BLITZ – Bed Brigade

During this Advent season, as we anticipate the incarnation, Immanuel, God with us, we hear the admonition to be ready, to watch.  We will remember God’s preparation for His Son to enter our world through Mary, Joseph and John the Baptist who was preparing the way. We also remember their long journey as strangers in a strange land.  We remember the neglect of those around them forcing the Holy Family to a cow stall for Christ’s birth.  Continue reading “2018 Holiday Bed Delivery BLITZ – Bed Brigade”