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April 2019

Red Oak Grove friends,


It’s hard to believe this is the last LOG letter I’ll write to you. Over the past seven and a half years, I’ve
written 85 or so of these. Eighty-five! This one will probably be the hardest.
Red Oak Grove will always hold a piece of my heart. You took me in, a super fresh and new pastor
from Luther Seminary. I still remember the day I moved in and you helped unload the U-haul to begin
my life here. I have learned a lot from all of you.
I thank you for your patience, your teaching, and your love. Thank you for letting me try new things.
The more I’m in ministry, the more I understand that trying new things and engaging in creativity
brings me such joy in the church. Thank you for caring for me. For the flowers you sent when my
grandpa died years ago. For showering Dave and I with well wishes and celebrations in our marriage.
Thank you for your partnership, your ideas, your dedication to this church.
As I say thank you, I also want to apologize. I know there are places and spaces when I made
mistakes. When I didn’t show up. When I reacted in unhelpful ways. I’m sorry for those times. Pastors
are as human as you are; I know I messed up. I hope you can forgive me for those times.
This transition throws both of us into the unknown. Into a bit of a wilderness space. You will wait for
the transition process to move forward towards a new called pastor; I will move to a new place, my
next call unknown. Let’s pray for each other. You certainly will be continually in my prayers. Let’s
both also always remember that God goes with us. We will not be alone in this wilderness.
A couple things to note about the upcoming transition:
1. A transition team will be meeting with Susan Miller, an assistant to the bishop, on April 1st. We
will know more details about the months to come, the support being offered by the synod, and
potential timelines after that meeting. We will share any information we learn and be as
transparent as possible in the process. (The transition team consists of two council members
and two congregational members asked by the council.)
2. Many of you have my cell phone number. Because that number is a work number that has
been paid for by the church for me to use, the number will be disconnected. I want you to
know this ahead of time so you are not surprised when I do not return texts or phone calls.
3. The difficult and strange reality is that after April 28, I will no longer be your pastor. This means
that as much as you might want me to, as much as I might love to, I will be unable to return for
any pastoral acts. I will be unable to be a part of baptisms, funerals, or weddings. This is a
clear boundary set by the greater church for clergy and it’s done for many reasons.
4. We need your help. There will be some tasks that the transition team, the council, and I need
help with in the midst of the next month. If you’re asked to be a part of something, if you see
something listed in the bulletin, please consider how you can be a part of ministry in this space
and time.
In times like this, I go to Paul’s letters. Paul always begins his letters with gratitude. As we close this
partnership in ministry, I find myself echoing Paul.
I thank my God every time I remember you, constantly praying with joy in every one of my
prayers for all of you, because of your sharing in the gospel from the first day until now. I am
confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by
the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to think this way about all of you, because you hold
me in your heart, for all of you share in God’s grace with me. And this is my prayer, that your
love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you to determine
what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless, having produced the
harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.
(Philippians 1:3-7, 9-11)
In gratitude and love,
Pastor Lindsay

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A MESSAGE FROM YOUR COUNCIL PRESIDENT

Dear Congregation,

I would like to take a minute of your time to let you know what has been happening with the Council.
Diane Maxwell has decided to step away from the Council at this time. As Vice President, I have
taken on the position of Council President.

We will be voting on a new Vice President at our Annual Meeting. They will become President in
2021. With the help of all of you, the Council, and God, I will do my best to help guide us for the next
couple of years.

With Pastor Lindsay leaving we have formed a Transition Team. The Transition Team will be
meeting with Susan Miller, the assistant to the Bishop. She helps congregations who are losing their
pastor. At this meeting the team will have an exit interview with Pastor Lindsay and learn what the
next steps will be.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask your Council members.

Sincerely,

Julie Hoffman, Council President


RED OAK GROVE LUTHERAN CHURCH COUNCIL MINUTES
MARCH 10, 2019
The meeting was called to order by Vice President Julie Hoffman. Members in attendance included; Holly
Ille, Cathy Kleinschmidt, Julie Berg, Marilyn Ulland, Terry Magnuson, Pete Kleinschmidt, Pastor Lindsay
and Laura Tjomsland. A motion was made, seconded and passed to move Julie Hoffman into the
President’s position in order to fill the remaining term of Diane Maxwell and Julie would continue on for
one more year to fill the position of President in 2020.
Check in with highs and lows was followed by prayer given by Pastor Lindsay.
The Treasurer’s Report was given. A motion was made by Laura and seconded by Marilyn to approve the
report as presented. The motion carried. Report will be filed for audit. Highlights included; opening
balance $34,610.53, income was $4,307.07. Expenses were $9,248.86, leaving a balance of $29,668.74.
The Youth Fund as a balance of $2,978.06, the Improvement Fund has a balance of $18,329.08 and the
Scholarship Fund has a balance of $2,230.33.
Old Business. A discussion regarding the celebration of the 160th anniversary. This will be held on
Cowboy Sunday with a meal following the service. Menu included; ribs, hot dogs, beans, salads and an
Anniversary Cake. The Council plans to plant a tree in honor of the celebration and other events will be
determined. Check in on the water heater was presented by Terry, some parts have been repaired and
replaced and the Trustees will look into a new hot water heater from the Freeborn – Mower Coop.
New Business. Pastor shared with us an article from Presiding Bishop, Elizabeth Eaton titled “What is
God up to?” Council will serve coffee on the third Sunday of May. Council will serve the Lenten Supper
on April 3rd which is also GIFT night. Council will provide additional items besides the standard pizza for
GIFT.
Pastor Lindsay gave her report. A review of the past month and looking ahead to the future. Lenten
services have started as well as noon Lunch and Liturgy. The Council will form a Transition Team to meet
with Susan Miller, the assistant to the Bishop to begin the process and timeline for the vacancy. A report
will be given to the entire congregation as these plans take place. February service included 1 Prairie
Manor, 4 ROG, 11 visits, 2 with communion and one hospital.
The Secretary’s Report was given. A motion was made by Holly and seconded by Cathy to accept the
report as presented. The motion carried.
WELCA reported that they would be serving for Lenten supper.
Deacon’s Report was given. The Youth will serve coffee on the 1st Sunday of the month. Wendy will be
in charge of this. Marilyn reported on the great success of the last GIFT night. They are planning an
Easter egg hunt for Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday is also going to be Confirmation so that the youth can be
confirmed by Pastor Lindsay, who they have studied with for the past three years. Council will provide a
cake for the occasion and ask that WELCA help with the serving. Easter breakfast was discussed. Final
plans will be completed at the April Council meeting.
Trustees Report was mostly covered in old business. Pete will review the final plans for signage with
Pastor.
Next meeting will be on April 7th, following service. April Eucharist Assistant is Julie Hoffman. The
meeting was adjourned and closed with the Lord’s Prayer.
Respectfully submitted,
Laura Tjomsland, Council Secretary
WELCA Report

The monthly meeting of the Red Oak Grove WELCA met on Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 10:15.
President Dorothy Peterson called the meeting to order. The meeting was opened in the Name of the
Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The purpose was read in unison. There were no opening devotions or
song sung.

The February WELCA report was read and placed on file. No corrections. Correspondence was
read. Thank you from Emma Christianson for her graduation quilt and finals week package. Thank
you from Lutheran Campus Center in Winona for our gift of money. Treasurer’s Report was read by
Ardell. Our checking account has $1,537.27 and savings has $343.50. Both reports approved and
placed on file.

Committee Reports: Judy Wambeam suggested that we start quilting for spring session on Monday,
March 18th. A quilt was given to the Blooming Prairie After Prom party. The Strawberry quilt made by
Evie Hanson is at the quilters now. Prairie Manor-Joyce said February 25th meeting was cancelled
due to storm. Perhaps next meeting will be in April. Suggested there is good reading material and
books in our small library. On your honor system to using the books. Ardell shared that Alice Reese
passed away and her service will be March 15th at 2 p.m. Planning for 100. Two cakes from each
circle: Rebekah-Linda, Marilyn, Dorothy P., Naomi-Nancy W and Doris D., Ruth-Cheryl H? Ardell
also shared February Wit cancelled for Barleys due to storm. Will try again on March 12th at 12:30.
Visitation-Joyce shared she had email from Dorothy Phipps and doing well. Also spoke to Vi
Christianson and Sue H.

Julie Hoffman was scheduling Lenten Suppers: March 6th-GIFT, March 13th-Laura/Council, March
20th and 27th-WELCA, April 3rd-Council, April 10th-Youth. Plan for 25-35 to be present.

Some discussion for 160 Anniversary. Maybe on Cowboy Sunday. WELCA serves coffee second
Sunday in March and Linda C. and Marlys P. from Rebekah will serve on March 10th. It was
mentioned that the water heater is in need of repair. Trying a new thermostat. Plans for Strawberry
Social are beginning. Date is June 11th.

The Spring Synod meeting of the SE Women of the ELCA will be at First Lutheran Church of
Blooming Prairie on April 25th from 4:45 to 8:30. Cost is $15 and sign up by April 15th. You can sign
up at our April WELCA meeting or let the office know if you would like to attend. Motion made for $30
offering.

Offering was taken and Marilyn H. gave worship offering meditation on the 10 Commandments.
Birthday song was sung for February birthdays. Meeting adjourned and we closed with the Lord’s
Prayer.

Respectfully,
Linda Christianson

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Have you recently changed your mailing address, removed a land line phone or added a cell
phone? If you have, would you please let the church office know at 437-3000 or 583-2038. Recently
we have received several pieces of mail returned to us with the incorrect address on them and we
have made calls and are told that the number has been disconnected. It is important to keep our
member record file up-to-date. Thank you for your help in this matter.
Pastoral Acts

Funeral – Alice Reese

We would like to thank everyone for the get well wishes and cards from
everyone over these past six weeks. They really meant a lot to us.
Al and Nancy Wesely

I would like to thank everyone for all the prayers, thoughts, cards, gifts
and visits. A special thank you to Pastor Lindsay for her visits and calls.
Blessings—Karen Johnson

Sign up for Easter Lilies Palms + Confirmation + Egg Hunt + you =


April 14
The sign-up sheet for ordering Easter Lilies is
on the narthex table. The cost is $10 and you Palm Sunday will be a super exciting day at
must order them by April 14th. Please make Red Oak Grove. We’ll start with the procession
checks payable to WELCA and give them to of palms as we remember Jesus arriving in
Ardell Swenson or Marilyn Ulland. Jerusalem to cheers and streets filled with
people. During worship, we will support Carson
Brennecke as he affirms his baptism. After
worship, we’ll celebrate Carson’s confirmation
with cake AND hold our traditional Palm
April Noisy Coin Offering Sunday Easter egg hunt!

On April 7, our Noisy Coin Offering will go


towards an international effort to share
scripture! Our noisy coins will go to the Nile GIFT: Wednesday, April 3
Peace Development Relief Agency, based in
Austin, specifically to purchase Bibles which Pizza. Activities. Story. But the thing I most
will be distributed in South Sudan. South excited about? We’re going to assemble Easter
Sudan has been plagued by war for many baskets for our homebound friends! You’re
years; these Bibles will specifically be printed invited to help! We’ll need people to color, to
in their native language and distributed at stuff, to fill, and then to deliver. This will be a
refugee camps to people who have been super service project to spread some Easter
forced to flee their homes because of the joy and we’d love for you to be a part of it all! It
violence. all begins at 5:30. Join us when you’re able!