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Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) is a unique ministry-through-investment organization that offers Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod members the opportunity to invest their money, earn interest, and help build LCMS churches and schools at the same time.

LCEF - Central Region serves Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod organizations and members in Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Learn more about LCEF at lcef.org.

 

LCEF District Outreach Grant to Help Fund a “Bethlehem Experience”

Trinity Lutheran Church and School, Waconia, Minn., was the recipient of a 2019 LCEF Minnesota South District Outreach Grant. Ms. Heidi Pawelk accepted the funds from LCEF Minnesota South District Vice President Kai Larson on Sunday, June 2, 2019.

Trinity Lutheran Church and School, Waconia, Minn., was the recipient of a 2019 LCEF Minnesota South District Outreach Grant. Ms. Heidi Pawelk accepted the funds from LCEF Minnesota South District Vice President Kai Larson on Sunday, June 2, 2019.

Trinity Lutheran Church and School, Waconia, had a desire to create a “Bethlehem Experience” for their community. Waconia, Minnesota, is a growing suburb located west of the Twin Cities with a population of more than 12,000.

Trinity plans to offer the event early in December to help create a sense of excitement and anticipation during the Advent season. The congregation members, school families and staff will work together to share the true meaning of Christmas with their community in an interactive and engaging way.

The Bethlehem Experience will include a Living Nativity with a petting zoo as well various stations for families to learn more about the birth of Christ and what that means for believers. The event would lead families through the Advent story through various stations including a dress up area, craft station, book station and a service project to benefit local nursing homes and food shelf.

Lutheran Church Extension Fund is blessed to help fund this outreach event. Trinity is one of three 2019 recipients of a $1,000 LCEF Minnesota South District outreach grant. "What a blessing it is to be able to help Trinity, Waconia, with their Bethlehem Experience as they strive to share with their community, the true meaning of Christmas,” said LCEF Minnesota South District Vice President Kai Larson. The LCEF grant will enable the ministry to offer the Bethlehem Experience as a free event to the public.

The 2020 LCEF district grant applications will be available at lcefcentral.org/grants beginning in September 2019. All Minnesota South District organizations are encouraged to apply.

LCEF also provides affordable loan funds for Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod ministries and rostered church workers. This ministry financing is made available thanks to LCEF investors. Invest today! Contact your LCEF district vice president or visit our national website at lcef.org.

2019 LCEF Minnesota South District Grant Recipients Announced

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Lutheran Church Extension Fund helps empower Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod ministries with every dollar invested. LCEF provides customized loans and services for ministries as well as loans for rostered church workers who dedicate their lives to sharing the Gospel.

As a nonprofit religious organization, LCEF is blessed to direct operating results right back into mission and ministry. These $1,000 outreach grants are awarded to the following Minnesota South District LCMS organizations:

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Owatonna

  • Laundry Ministry

University Lutheran Chapel, Minneapolis

  • A study on Handel’s Messiah.

Trinity Lutheran Church and School, Waconia

  • Bethlehem Experience

The 2020 LCEF district outreach grant application process will begin in September 2019. Please visit lcefcentral.org/grants for more information.

Partner with Lutheran Church Extension Fund and you can help provide funding for ministry! Learn more about investing in the Church via Lutheran Church Extension Fund at lcef.org or contact your Minnesota South District LCEF Vice President Kai Larson at 952-223-2163 or Kai.Larson@lcef.org.

Preventing Ice Dams and Icicles

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Problem

Ice dams are ridges of ice and icicles caused by melt water from further up the roof re-freezing lower on the roof. The “dam” created by the ridge of ice along the eaves can trap further melt water and result in significant leakage under and through the roofing, the roof structure, or the ceiling and walls below. Large icicles along the eaves can become a danger to people below if they fall.

Cause

The fundamental cause of ice dams is a result of part of the roof becomes warm enough to melt snow that is lying on the roof, the snow will melt and water will run down a sloped roof. If the water encounters a cold surface, the water turns to ice. Ice dams result from a difference in temperature on the roof surface where the upper part of the roof is warmer than the lower.

Common Causes

• Warm air entering space below roof membrane, causing warming and melting of snow. Air leakage through ceiling plane increases the temperature of an attic space or the underside of the roof membrane.

• Poor or insufficient insulation.

• Heat sources in attic.

• Poor ventilation.

Solutions

Air leakage—attic hatch, space conditioning ducts, plumbing stacks and penetrations, chimneys, electrical penetrations, light fixtures, recessed lights and perimeter walls are potential leak sources.

▪ Sealant/caulking can be used to fill small openings and gaps.

▪ Expanding polyurethane or acrylic foam should be used around openings no more than one inch in size.

▪ For large openings, drywall with taped joints should be used.

Insulation—the more insulation provided on the interior, the more unlikely enough snow will collect to cause melting. Depth of insulation depends on the climate, however it is recommended a minimum or R30 be provided below ventilated attic roof membranes, R35 below ventilated cathedral ceilings, and R40 below unventilated cathedral ceilings. These recommendations should be increased for very cold climates. (DOE Zone 6 or higher).

Heat sources in attic—air leakage from ducts placed in the attic can also act as a significant heat and moisture source, and cause both condensation and snow melting. If sources are already there, adding a significant amount of insulation and an airtight blanket around them will reduce the source of heat being introduced into the attic.

Ventilation—keeping the underside of the roof sheathing close to the exterior temperature is the best solution. This is achieved with good ventilation and good insulation acting together.

Waterproofing membrane—a self-sealing waterproofing membrane should be installed on the roof high enough to resist six to eight inches of water above the edge of the wall insulation.

LCEF’s Architectural Advisory Committee provides site and facility analyses and can assist with energy efficient projects. Visit lcef.org or contact your local LCEF district vice president.

Can People Find My Church?

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What kind of an image does your church facility present to the community? The visual presence can impact how the church is viewed by the community. Is it clean and tidy, or do the grounds and buildings look tired?

Well-maintained grounds and buildings can be an invitation and clue to the quality of the experience inside. Here are some ideas that you may consider to raise awareness of your church.

Lighting

Light the important features of your facility. The front façade, steeple or ground sign when lit and attached to a timer are effective tools to draw attention to your facilities.

Landscaping

Beyond the obvious trimmed landscape, consider a colorful flower garden around your yard sign or sidewalk edging. Identify an ideal spot for color and empower a “green-thumbed” member of the congregation to work wonders with a minimum of investment. In general, well-chosen plant materials continue to be the most cost effective way to enhance your facilities.

An example of a feather-shaped sign.

An example of a feather-shaped sign.

Signs, Banners, Flags

Signs are often under-scaled. If you can’t read the sign when passing in a car at 30 mph, your sign is too small to be effective.

Some of the best signs have a component of movement. Consider an American flagpole or feather-shaped advertising sign to draw attention to your facilities.

Take a long look at your facilities and see if some of these ideas have merit.

Visit lcef.org or call 800-843-5233 to find an Architectural Advisory Committee member near you or contact your local district vice president.

Join us for an LCEF Minnesota South District Lunch & Learn!

LCEF advocates and LCMS congregation and day school leaders/members in the Minnesota South District are invited to a Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) Lunch & Learn this August. 

Enjoy a catered, complimentary lunch from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.  To see a map and get directions, click the church name below. 

See Minnesota South District ministries who have successfully partnered with LCEF. Learn how LCEF can help equip your LCMS ministry. LCEF serves LCMS ministries and rostered church workers exclusively with loans, investments, ministry support, scholarships, grants and more. Please join us!

Questions, please contact Kai Larson, LCEF District Vice President – Minnesota South at Kai.Larson@lcef.org or  952-223-2163.

REGISTER NOW

Register by Wed., August 8, 2018!

Carlson Received 2017 LCEF Minnesota South District Scholarship

Kristen Carlson received a $1,000 LCEF scholarship award on Sunday, January 28, 2018 at her home congregation, St. John’s Lutheran Church, Austin, Minnesota. Kai Larson, LCEF District Vice President – Minnesota South,  presented the check.

Kristen Carlson received a $1,000 LCEF scholarship award on Sunday, January 28, 2018 at her home congregation, St. John’s Lutheran Church, Austin, Minnesota. Kai Larson, LCEF District Vice President – Minnesota South,  presented the check.

[Kristen] is an excellent example of what we want for the next generation of church and world leaders that are willing to serve others because of the good news of Jesus Christ,” wrote Richard Heuton, Chairman of the Board of Elders at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Austin, Minnesota.

A 2017 scholarship recipient, Kristen Carlson received her $1,000 scholarship award on Sunday, January 28, 2018, at her home congregation. Carlson plans to graduate this spring from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, majoring in communication studies, music and philosophy. She expressed gratitude for the support of her home church and Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF).

LCEF is blessed to provide annual scholarships for active, faith-filled Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod students. To read more about Kristen’s story, click here: http://lcefuppermidwest.org/news-feed/2017/5/9/kristen-carlson-awarded-final-mns-lcef-scholarship.

The 2018 LCEF district scholarships will be announced this spring. Follow our newsfeed at lcefcentral.org for announcements.

For more information on how you can partner with the ministry of church extension, visit lcef.org or call 800-843-5233.

Kaleidoscope Fund Announced $52,000 Grant for MNS District

MNS District Executive Assistant to the President Rev. Bob Schulze (pictured left) received the presentation check from LCEF MNS District Vice President Kai Larson at the district Board of Directors meeting on December 5, 2017, at the district office in Burnsville, Minnesota.  Photo credit:  Billy Schultz, MNS District Director of Communications and Mission Support

MNS District Executive Assistant to the President Rev. Bob Schulze (pictured left) received the presentation check from LCEF MNS District Vice President Kai Larson at the district Board of Directors meeting on December 5, 2017, at the district office in Burnsville, Minnesota. Photo credit: Billy Schultz, MNS District Director of Communications and Mission Support

A $52,000 grant for the Minnesota South (MNS) District of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) was announced by the Kaleidoscope Fund, a granting program established by Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF).

Having identified a need for emergent leadership training and continued education, the district plans to offer need-based scholarships with the grant funds. These scholarships will allow church leaders to attend intensive leadership training programs to help equip them to better serve God.

MNS District Executive Assistant to the President Rev. Bob Schulze (pictured left) received the presentation check from LCEF MNS District Vice President Kai Larson at the district Board of Directors meeting on December 5, 2017, at the district office in Burnsville, Minnesota. 

"It is a pleasure to present this check to the Minnesota South District," said Larson. "These funds will be put to great use to further God's Kingdom."

In November, the Kaleidoscope Fund announced their 2017 grant recipients. The fund awarded a total of $601,000 to 11 LCMS ministries throughout the United States. Visit lcef.org to learn more about the Kaleidoscope Fund and see additional recipients.

Loving Boldly: 2017 LCEF Fall Leadership Conference

LCEF President and CEO Rev. Bart Day speaks at the 2017 Fall Leadership Conference.

LCEF President and CEO Rev. Bart Day speaks at the 2017 Fall Leadership Conference.

Well into its third decade, the Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) 2017 Fall Leadership Conference continued its tradition of presenting the Gospel-inspired results and benefits of church extension work. This year’s conference was held in New Orleans on Nov. 17-19.

Organized around their annual corporate meeting, the conference serves as an opportunity to acknowledge and applaud all that God has done through LCEF’s partnerships with The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS).

Every year the conference follows a theme. This year’s theme was “Love Boldly.”

In his opening remarks, LCEF Senior Vice President – Ministry Support and conference emcee Max Biesenthal noted the noble nature of “loving boldly.” In practice, he said, “we tend to love the things we like,” such as ice cream, naps, our children, sunsets and books. Instead, loving boldly challenges us to love the unlovable just as Christ has shown us.

One ministry loving boldly was Redeeming Life Maternity Home. This home for unwed mothers in Sanford, Fla., offers a safe haven for women who may not know a pro-life Christian option is available to them. Pastor Ed and Sheryl DeWitt started the ministry when their unmarried daughter learned she was pregnant and knew that abortion was not an option. Their daughter shared her situation with the congregation and asked for their support—and it was given in abundance. LCEF gave Redeeming Life the 2017 Fred E. Lietz Mission Project Award.

“I loved hearing the stories of the awardees,” Rev. Jeffery David Nickel of Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Clarence, N.Y. said. “It’s encouraging to hear how God is working around us, often in small, nearly invisible ways,” through His people and investors. “It’s a testament that LCEF support makes a difference in the Church.”

For his tireless and charitable work at his congregation and in the community, Rev. Dennis Bartels received the Lietz Individual Ministry Award. Bartels is a 35-year veteran of Holy Cross in North Miami and LCEF advocate.

Florida-Georgia District President Greg Walton said the following about Bartels’ generosity: “Their school feeds 400 students both breakfast and lunch. And when Irma went through Miami and the school lost power, instead of losing all the food in their refrigerators they grilled it and gave it away.”

The awards are named in honor of Fred E. Lietz, an early church extension pioneer and LCEF’s first president.

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. From left to right: Dave Dravecky; Herman Cain; Rev. Bart Day; Rev. Dr. John Nunes; Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison.

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. From left to right: Dave Dravecky; Herman Cain; Rev. Bart Day; Rev. Dr. John Nunes; Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison.

Joy and loving boldly
Noteworthy speakers like radio talk show host and former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain and former San Francisco Giants baseball player Dave Dravecky advanced the 2017 conference theme in their one-of-a-kind ways.

Dravecky shared the story of losing his pitching arm to cancer and how the bold love of friends helped him navigate that dark period of his life. Cain spoke about the idea that “you cannot love boldly unless you are happy.” He then explained how to achieve that happiness: have something to do; have someone to love (starting with Jesus); and have something to hope for.
Cain’s point about happiness wasn’t lost on LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison who spoke Saturday morning. Harrison said, “If we cease caring for the least, the lost, the last, the disaster victim, the divorced, the struggling, the broken, we lose the soul of the Church. Bold love requires us to be joyful—joyfully Lutheran.”

Other speakers included LCEF President and CEO Rev. Bart Day; Executive Director of the Lutheran Center for Religious Liberty Greg Seltz; and Concordia College New York President Rev. Dr. John Nunes.

“Dr. Nunes’ presentation had the biggest impact on me,” said Rev. Jason Shaw of Saint Paul Lutheran Church, Jackson, Mo. “I loved his personal testimony. He removed fears that I have about changing trends in our culture and gave me hope that the best of the LCMS will survive and prayerfully thrive.”

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. Fall Leadership Conference attendees fill care packages for inmates at Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola during the Servant Event.

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. Fall Leadership Conference attendees fill care packages for inmates at Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola during the Servant Event.

The Servant Event, hosted just hours before the conference officially starts on Friday, is the highlight of the weekend for many attendees. This event invites people to participate in a benevolence project. This year, care packages were filled for inmates at Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola.

LCMS Northern Illinois District President Dan Gilbert, who attended the Servant Event with his wife, said, “The very positive atmosphere and the encouragement to continue faithfully in the Lord’s mission makes this one of the best LCMS events I attend, year after year.”
Saturday afternoon was dedicated to LCEF’s annual meeting, which serves as an official review of the fund and current organization objectives. LCEF Board of Directors (BOD), officers, members-at-large, former staff, district vice presidents and district voting delegates attended this two-hour gathering.

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. LCEF staff members pray after filling the truck with the care packages assembled during the Servant Event.

Photo courtesy of Lee Rohlf. LCEF staff members pray after filling the truck with the care packages assembled during the Servant Event.

George Cook, international consulting director with Graystone Consulting, shared an overview of the economy, as well as an investment market presentation. LCEF President and CEO Rev. Bart Day reported on LCEF’s 2017 fiscal year performance metrics; announcement of earnings distribution to the Synod and partner districts; and core initiatives for 2018 fiscal year. 


To fill a vacant BOD seat in the West Region, members voted and elected Dale Wagner. Wagner is a retired  finance executive and sat on the LCEF Rocky Mountain District Loan Committee. To fill a vacancy in the East Central Region, members voted and elected Don Scifres. Scifres is President of SmartFile in Indianapolis and serves on the LCMS Indiana District Board of Directors. Incumbents Michael Kzirian and Mark Pieper, both up for re-election, kept their BOD seats. Additionally, a vacancy in an At-Large position was filled with the election of David Worthington by the LCMS Board of Directors at their November 2017 meeting.


Ending on a strong note
There was a general feeling that the love boldly theme energized the attendees and all the presenters connected back to it. This truth could be seen on display during Sunday’s Divine Service. 

Rev. Dr. Ulmer Marshall, first vice president of the Southern District, preached on 1 Corinthians 13:13, the conference verse. He said, “When we are dire and in despair we need to have hope, unconditional love. We need to keep reminding those who are hurting of this truth, through words and deeds, God is love.” 

He left the audience with this thought-provoking question: “Does the world know how much we love?” 

LCEF, a non-profit organization, has served as the financial extension of the LCMS since 1978, offering funding and resources to congregations, schools and Rostered Church Workers through investment support of LCMS members.

The mission of LCEF is to support the Church in fulfilling its mission of sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ by being a Christ-centered servant partner of the LCMS, ensuring that funds and services are available now and in the future.