Nathan Toenjes is the third and final 2014 North Wisconsin District Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) $1,000 Scholarship winner. A member of Pilgrim Evangelical Lutheran Church in Green Bay, Wis., Toenjes is a graduating senior from Northeastern Wisconsin (NEW) Lutheran High School in Green Bay and plans to enroll at Concordia University, Nebraska in the fall.
“It is refreshing to read our scholarship applicants’ express their understanding of the ministry of church extension,” said LCEF NWD VP Dennis Johnson. “So often as Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod members, we make the concept of church extension so much more complicated than it really needs to be. I appreciate the way Nathan took time to understand LCEF and then explain it in a simple way that makes it possible to share with others.”
In his scholarship application, Toenjes’ wrote, “Lutheran Church Extensions Fund (LCEF) is an organization that focuses on Jesus, the LCMS congregation, and finances. It gives church members the opportunity to invest and earn money, while also helping build LCMS churches and schools. Overall, their goal is to help in the spreading and sharing of the gospel through the supplying of funds to the LCMS. With money being an integral part of our society today, LCEF couldn’t be more spot on with their focus. … The average church member is able to earn money from their investments, while various LCMS organizations are then able borrow that money at very friendly interest rates. I really appreciate how simple and easy the LCEF has made the entire process of giving to the church. Through the work of the LCEF, lives are being changed. Not only are churches and schools able to make use of funds to build, remodel, or upgrade their facilities, but church workers are able to get reasonable housing and educational loans. Due to this organization, more workers are going to be able to get through schooling and go out into the world to spread the Word of God as trained leaders…. To me, LCEF is an organization on the upswing. After having their most successful year every in 2013, the sky is the limit. With Jesus at their core, who knows what the future may hold.”
Toenjes’ pastor, Rev. Scott Malm, wrote the following in his letter of recommendation, “As an individual, Nathan displays a willing spirit that will bless those around him. He is also committed to God’s Word and is seeking actively to live a holy life. As a person with high standards and character coupled together with his training and spiritual gifts, Nathan is prepared to serve well and lead well (an exceptionally rare mix) in any environment.”
NEW Lutheran H.S. Mathematics Teacher Holly Blocker also submitted a letter of recommendation for Toenjes. In her letter, she wrote, “Nathan is active in a variety of extra and co-curricular activities within the school community. From drama to sports, student council to music, in each group Nathan is an asset. He shows positive leadership by his actions and by his words. Nathan was the captain of the football team. He has earned All Conference awards in both football and basketball. Nathan plays piano for the school’s praise band and is a member of the concert band. He has also been in multiple drama productions during his high school career.”
LCEF was blessed to provide a total of ten $1,000 scholarships this year to our outstanding LCMS students in the upper Midwest districts of Iowa East (1), Iowa West (1), Minnesota North (1), Minnesota South (2), North Dakota (1), North Wisconsin (3) and South Wisconsin (1). See all ten 2014 LCEF scholarship winner's articles on our blog via our newsfeed at www.lcefuppermidwest.org. The online scholarship application for 2015 award will be posted online in September. Watch our local newsfeed at www.lcefuppermidwest.org and our Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/LCEFuppermidwest for future application and award information.