* COORDINATING COUNCIL MEETINGS
When the editor took over this chair, he was informed that he was welcome to attend the meetings of the synod’s Coordinating Council (CC). “It may give an insight as to how the kingdom work is done in our midst, and you might even report on it.” (Or something like that was said.)
The CC meets twice a year (spring and fall) at Immanuel Lutheran College, Eau Claire. Its latest meeting was March 1-2, 2000. From as far away as Florida, Colorado, and Texas they come–the praesidium and many of the elected board members. Most are called servants (pastors and professors) who take time out from their “local” tasks. Others are laymen who, unless retired, sacrifice family vacation time for the privilege of serving.
As one sits in on meetings, the impression may be left that there is church “politicking” going on. In a sense there is. As these servants strive to ascertain the direction the different branches of the Lord’s work among us–missions, regents, education, doctrine etc.–are going, they juggle budgetary figures and jostle verbally to further their respective agendas. They discuss, ponder, pray, and discuss some more, often right through meal times and late into the evening.
Yet when all is said and done, one marvels at the fact that, in spite of the weakness of its human components, there is something at work in the CC that only the sanctifying influence of the Spirit of God can accomplish. Whether the debate or discussion is about calling another professor or how best to make the new Sunday School materials available to the congregations, there is something present far different from a political rally. Present is an evident desire to further the Lord’s work by practicing the best and wisest Christian stewardship of the available–and too often quite meager–funds.
When you pray, remember those who serve the church in positions of synodical responsibility, and who do so realizing their only remuneration is the joy of serving their Lord. Pray also that you yourself, as well as your brothers and sisters in the faith, may be led to support the synodical work (“missions”) as generously as the Lord has provided for your every physical and spiritual need.
* MISSION VISITATION TEAM INSIGHTS
Soon after returning from the February 2000 Nigeria/India trip, Mission Board member Jack Mayhew (a member at Grace of Valentine, Nebr.) posted a report on the CLC’s internet source. Due to space, we can here share only a part of his report:
” . . . While visiting our churches in the CLCI in India and in the NCLC in Nigeria, we ascertained a little more specifically what the needs of the peoples there were. . . .
“It was a joy to meet the orphans. We anticipated coming to the orphanage every day and being met with the big smiles and warm greetings as if we were heirarchy. It couldn’t help but warm your heart. And it was especially rewarding seeing these children fed both physically and spiritually, wondering if they would be out on the street with the thousands of children we passed, begging for just today’s rice, without the financial help of our Sunday schools, ladies groups, and others. We’re sending a three-month supply of dry food stuffs (instant tea, dry soup mixes, jello, puddings, etc.) to Pastor Dave and Mary Koenig. These are items they are unable to purchase in Nigeria. We’re hoping at Convention we can have a collection of the same to send back with them when they return to Nigeria after Convention.”
Jack concludes: “It would be Rewarding (with a capital R) for you to see firsthand the amount of good the little that we do does in India, and the joy with which it is received.”
This issue contains a number of pictures from the team’s overseas visitation.