Good Shepherd Lutheran Church and Preschool has been growing significantly in recent years; the congregation is nearing a total of 800 members. The ministry is located in Owatonna, Minnesota, serving an immediate community of 25,600 with a median age of 37 years old. The congregation’s vision is a testament to their love for God’s people in their area: “We will prepare people to serve in our community and world, so more can find a meaningful relationship with Jesus.” Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) has been blessed to partner with this ministry by helping fund its expansion over the years.
To better serve their members and community, Good Shepherd embarked on several years of construction. They celebrated a ground breaking in February 2009 with their sights set on adding a sanctuary, social hall and more. The congregation celebrated the dedication of the new space in September 2009. While the initial construction moved rapidly, the congregation had to persevere. There were a few remaining projects; the finishing touches were finally completed by fall 2016. Last year, Good Shepherd completed work on several areas including a new coffee bar and a glass wall between the sanctuary and narthex.
On October 2, 2016, Good Shepherd celebrated an LCEF Sunday and received their annual rebate check. The congregation is eligible for an LCEF Shared Blessings loan rebate. The more members who are LCEF investors, the higher their rebate amount based upon total congregation membership each year.
LCEF has also supported this congregation in the past with a Minnesota South (MNS) District LCEF Outreach Event Grant. Members started a backpack program to provide food for school children in need on the weekends throughout the school year. MNS District LCEF is offering five $1,000 outreach event grants again this year. To apply, visit lcefuppermidwest.org, click on the ‘resources’ tab. The deadline to register for 2017 grants is February 28, 2017.
For more information on LCEF loans, investments and ministry support, visit lcef.org or call 800-843-5233.