LWML Convention Overview

Men and women of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) from across the nation may now register for the 36th Biennial Lutheran Women’s Missionary League (LWML) Convention to be held June 25-28, 2015, at the Iowa Events Center, in Des Moines, Iowa. The theme for this convention, “Bountiful! Sow ž Nourish ž Reap,” is based on 2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV). Early discounted registration is available through March 14, 2015, with regular registration beginning March 15. Register early and save $20!

The worship proclaimer for Thursday’s opening worship will be Rev. Gregory Seltz, speaker of The Lutheran Hour® radio program. Rev. Keith Piotter, pastor of Our Savior Lutheran Church in Bettendorf, Iowa, will serve as proclaimer for Sunday’s closing worship service.

Guest speakers include Keynote Speaker Rev. Dr. James Lamb, Executive Director of National Lutherans For Life; Carly Hatcher, Executive Director of Mission Opportunities Short Term (MOST) Ministries; Rev. Jim Rivett, an LCMS Southern Illinois District Prison Ministry Coordinator; Tim Hetzner, President of Lutheran Church Charities; and Rev. Dr. Tilahun Mekonnen Mendedo, president of Concordia College, Selma, Alabama.

Gary Thies, Director of Mission Central, Mapleton, Iowa will speak at one of the eight special interest luncheons. Bible studies will be led by former LWML Pastoral Counselor Rev. Michael Mattil, from Denison, Texas.

Recommended changes to the Bylaws, election of officers, and other business of the LWML will be intermingled with mission speakers, song, and laughter. For a lively finale to a busy day, Humorous Interrupter Jan Struck, from Appleton, Wisconsin, and Convention Song Leader Dr. Dina Vendetti, from Dover, Delaware, will provide the Saturday evening entertainment.

More information is available in the Winter 2014 issue of the Lutheran Woman’s Quarterly, and available on our website.

Convention Offerings’ Recipients Chosen

Four offerings will be gathered during the LWML Convention giving all who attend an opportunity to respond to the blessings God has given to them. Anyone, whether or not they are able to attend, may contribute by sending their offerings with their delegate or mailing them to the LWML Office at P.O. Box 411993, St. Louis, Missouri 63141-1993. The LWML Board of Directors has designated the offering recipients listed below:

  1. Mission Goal for the 2015-2017 Biennium.
  2. Discovering Disabilities – Including ALL of God’s Children Lutheran Special Education Ministries (LSEM) Farmington Hills, Michigan.
    • Offering will provide educational events and supportive consultation to equip congregations and/or schools to reach out and include children/families with disabilities in their Christ-centered faith communities.
  3. Cabins for Christ’s Children at Lutheran Valley Retreat, Colorado Springs, Colorado.
    • Offering will be used to purchase materials/beds for cabins burned in the 2002 Hayman fire.
  4. Family of God Mission – Detroit, Michigan – A mission plant of the Michigan District that serves the addicted, homeless, and poor of South-West Detroit, Michigan.
    • Offering will be used to replace the van that is 15 years old and near the end of its service life.

More information on these mission organizations will be available under Conventions on the LWML website soon.

Candidates for Convention Ballot Chosen

LWML Nominating Chairman Rae Ann Spitzenberger and committee members Sharon Goertzen, Jennifer Huecker, Leslie Jaseph, and Carli Zygowicz, along with LWML Senior Counselor Rev. John Heckmann met in St. Louis, Missouri, on October 17-19, 2014 to review applications and to prayerfully consider all nominees. They then selected the following candidates for the convention ballot for the 2015-2017 biennium:

Candidates for President:     

Shari Miller, Montana District
Patti Ross, Oklahoma District

Candidates for Vice President of Organizational Resources:

Debbie Larson, North Dakota District
Edie Norris, Washington-Alaska District

Candidates for Vice President of Special Focus Ministries:

Nikki Tyrrell, North Dakota District
Kaye Wolff, Michigan District

Candidates for Treasurer:

Melody Rosenwinkel, Utah-Idaho District
Marilyn Schroeder, Iowa West District

Candidates for Pastoral Counselor:

Rev. Robert Mundahl, Minnesota South District
Rev. Larry Troxel, Central Illinois District

Candidates for Nominating Committee:

Sally Aschinger, Missouri District
Margo Dupre, Texas District
Katy Gifford, Nebraska South District
Deaconess Betty Knapp, North Wisconsin District
Jan Mauer, Northern Illinois District
Deb Poese, Chesapeake District
Melissa Salomón, Pacific Southwest District
Ginger Starrett, New Jersey District

Photos and biographies are available in the upcoming Spring issue of the Lutheran Woman’s Quarterly. Watch for this issue of the Quarterly online and in your mailboxes soon!

Other Convention Highlights

  • Convention Bags - Each participant will receive a convention bag at registration.
  • The “Bountiful! Harvest Times” News will be a daily news source.
  • A DVD of convention highlights is back! Participants may take this home to share their LWML Convention story.
  • Live-streaming is back! Everyone across the nation will be able to join in the celebration from their own churches or homes. Watch for more information on this in the coming months.
  • LWML will début a new Outreach Today’s Light Bible. Plan on purchasing this Bible to give away and reach out to someone who needs to know Jesus loves them.
  • It’s a “Bountiful Bash – a Party with a Purpose!” Friday night’s block party will be an event to remember!
  • “Camp Insta Friends” childcare is ready to welcome your children.
  • Banner Gallery – all district banners may be viewed on our website. Watch for more information on this in the coming months.
  • SONshine Bear will greet everyone as they visit the LWML Store.
  • Dina and Jan – Witty, Wacky, Entertaining! Jan Struck and Dr. Dina Vendetti will keep the crowd entertained on Saturday evening.
  • Get some fresh air at the third Biennial Tee Up 4 Mites Golf Outing on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 at 8 a.m.
  • Special breakfasts, dinners, Friday noon gatherings, and Saturday luncheons inspire and inform.
  • Mission in Motion/Mission Pledge Walk will be Friday, June 26, 2015, from 5:00-6:00 p.m.
  • Half and Full Day Tours will be offered before and after the convention.

Find more information on all these activities online or in the Winter Lutheran Woman’s Quarterly.

33 Mission Grants on Ballot

The Grant Evaluation and Selection Committee was held January 12-14, 2015. It was their responsibility and privilege to prayerfully consider and select mission grant proposals to place on the ballot for the LWML 36th Biennial Convention. 33 grants were chosen for the ballot. The LWML Convention will be held in Des Moines, Iowa, June 25-28, 2015, and the grants selected will be for the 2015-2017 biennium.

LWML personnel attending the meeting were LWML President Kay Kreklau, Vice President of Gospel Outreach Shelley Moeller (meeting chairman), and LWML Mission Grants Committee chairman and members Sharon Roegge, Henrietta Gordon, Sally Handrick, Jackie Morris, and Sherrie Rumpeltes. LCMS representatives who attended part of the meeting were Barbara Below, Assistant to the LCMS President, and Rev. Bart Day, Interim Chief Mission Officer and Executive Director of the Office of National Mission. The LWML Convention will be held in Des Moines, Iowa, June 25-28, 2015, and the grants selected will be for the 2015-2017 biennium.

More information on these missions will be available under Conventions on the LWML website by March 1, 2015.

Servant Connections and Gifts from the Heart

Women, men, and children 14 years and over are encouraged to join “Servant Connections” on Thursday, June 25, 2015, at the LWML Convention in Des Moines, Iowa. Each participant will receive a special button as a memento of your experience.

On-site Servant Activities planned include Braille Books of the Bible, Communication Station Cards of Encouragement, Fleece Blankets, Package Meals for Kids Against Hunger, Making Lap Robes, Prison Ministry of Marking Bibles, Plastic Bag Mats, Pillow Case Dresses, Quilts, and Gospel Bracelets.

Registrants will choose a first and second preference on the Registration Form-Part 2. There is a $5 fee to participate. (If anyone is participating only in the Servant Connections on Thursday and not registering for the entire convention, there is a $10 participation fee.)

Gifts from the Heart (material items given to Christian mission service organizations) will again be gathered as participants join together in Des Moines. Gifts will be gathered for donation to Luther Care Services, Orphan Grain Train, and Lutherans for Life. Participants are encouraged to bring Crayola regular markers, Tempera paint, school paint brushes, crayons, colored pencils, glue or glue sticks, pony beads and laces, and school and hygiene kits. Also participants may purchase or hand make quilts, hot neck wraps, shawls, undershirts, decorative pillows, and scarves.

Find more detailed information in the Winter Lutheran Woman’s Quarterly or online.