MESSAGE FROM CHERYL As I reviewed the articles included in this newsletter, I was awestruck by what has been countless hours and efforts of volunteers bringing us to this point in our transitional phase. Certainly there are tweaks to procedures/programs and activities/worship and others but Bethany family, we are a work in progress. Volunteers working together as a team can accomplish much while enjoying the fellowship with each other. Its amazing what “a bunch of Lutherans” working as a team can accomplish! No dream or idea should deter us from becoming the best version of ourselves. A heartfelt thanks to our volunteers for your contributions to the goal- a systematic plan in place not only during this phase but into the future as well. I am honored to be your President. Thank you for putting your trust in me and caring about all of us in the Bethany family. The fruits of your labor are evident and impactful as together, we continue our journey. God Bless all of you, Cheryl Matzke
SPECIAL SALUTES TO: ● The Women’s group and youth group for decorating poles for the annual community contest. You did a great job! ● Ava Anderson for being selected October Senior High Student of the month at Lafayette. Congratulations! ● “The Lawn Boys” -Jim Gilbertson, Harvey Bakke, and Darold Johnston for mowing the church’s lawns and maintaining the mowers this past year. We appreciate your diligent work.
1A MESSAGE FROM THE NEWLY FORMED WORSHIP TEAM Bethany Church is Alive and Well! We at Bethany Church have been going through a lot of changes in the past year. But, be assured, Bethany Church is alive and well! Jesus is still at the CENTER OF our church and that is what we are all about. Yes, we have had Covid issues and our loved Pastor Gary and Linda retired; but we are moving forward. It is going to take some time to find a new pastor but in the interim; all of us must work together to make sure our House of Worship thrives! Our church council is working hard to make this happen. Confirmation, Sunday School and Sunday Services are still happening. But, we need ALL of YOU to come and be a part of this! A Worship Team has been formed and has met to plan our Sunday Services for the upcoming months. We will have a combination of types of services including guest speakers, taped sermons, special music from the Sunday School and members, communion services once per month and much more. Our goal is always to make sure when you leave worship that you feel you have grown in your faith as a result of attending! Our Sunday School is still at 9 a.m. and our Sunday Service is at 10 a.m. We are a church FAMILY and “We LOVE YOU!” We look forward to seeing you on Sunday mornings! Thank you!
UPCOMING SERVICES November 7: Worship lead by Keaton Hanson with a video sermon November 14: Worship by WELCA with their Thankoffering service November 21: Worship lead by Allen Bertilrud with communion and kids are singing Tuesday, November 23 @ 7:00 PM - Thanksgiving Service With Our Presbyterian Friends November 28: TBD
Bethany Family, Thank you to all of you who have taken the time to respond to our request for updated demographic information. The information will be valuable to us to improve communication regarding church happenings and events. As stated before, Bethany is not just surviving in this transitional phase, we are thriving! A church is not merely a building with a physical presences, it is its members working together sharing their unique talents in countless ways as we create our new normal. Currently we are at an 85% response rate which is phenomenal! But we want to connect with all of our members so whether you choose to be active or inactive, please consider sharing your information with us via phone, email, or mail- it would be appreciated.
2NEW BEACON BOOKS COMING IN JANUARY Every member of Bethany is given the opportunity to share and be a part of the congregational events and other worship services which Bethany offers to its members. These include ushering, lectoring, coffee host, communion assistants,potlucks, etc. Each family gets to pick the best two months that they are available to serve their church family. We have posted sign up sheets in the hallway at church. Please reach out and let us know what you want soon as some months fill up very fast.
CALL PROCESS AND COMMITTEE We have entered the call process in search of a full time pastor. There are specific steps to be followed as provided by the Synod. It is a process and takes time. Statement by Bishop Teech clarify that mission: The calling of a pastor/interim pastor/SAM is not the same as hiring an employee, and what is often accepted in business and industry is NOT the process used in the church. Respect for the call process includes prayer for the guidance of the Holy Spirit, reflection upon the unique gifts and ministries of your congregation. Please understand that the calling of a pastor is a time of significant change for rostered ministers, congregation, and also for the synod. All have an important stake in what is unfolding. There is a step by step approach to what is actually a complex process requiring full engagement of call committees, congregations and synod staff. Know that we treat each call process a unique and that each process involves countless hours of work by your synod staff both in your presence and behind the scenes. The call process is common across the ELCA and those aspects that are unique to our context here in the Northwestern Minnesota Synod. Throughout the process, I encourage you to be in daily prayer for guidance from the Holy Spirit. We need God’s Holy Spirit at every step, and it is right to ask for holy guidance. You should expect to be perplexed, disappointed, and anxious as well as inspired, grateful and surprised. All of those feelings are involved when God’s Holy Spirit moves us. This process is designed to assist you in your prayerful discernment. I firmly believe that the Holy Spirit is involved in these process, and I know that you will discover this as well. God’s richest blessings of the Spirit as you begin this exciting journey! To that end, a call committee has been established here at Bethany to begin the process. They have been provided with specific guidelines to follow, and as a congregation, we request support and prayers for them as they undertake this for our Bethany family. The Call Committee is chaired by Allen Bertilrud. Other members are: Bobbi Guillemette, Wes Largis, DeeAnn Leines, Hunter Pierson, Missy Sletten and Council President Cheryl Matzke. They will provide updates as they work through the process. PRACTICING RESURRECTION Bethany has organized a team to participate in the Synod’s Practicing Resurrection Program. It provides congregations an opportunity to engage in a process of leader development, imagination, and building of capacity to become a church that engages its community in new and meaningful ways. Our team is actively engaging in workshops, gathering congregational and community data, and multiple discussions regarding our unique identity and future development. In addition, they are collaboration with other congregations in the cohort, sharing insights and support as we all are embarking on this journey. Our team leader is Maureen Hams with Cheryl Matzke, Missy Sletten, Linda Johnston, and Andy Olson as current team members. If you have any questions or would like to become a member, please reach out. We are all excited to be a part of this journey to gain clarity as to “why” we exist, rather that “what” we are going to do.
3WE ARE CHURCH! WELCA is an auxiliary of the church open to all women providing study, fellowship, and meaningful mission projects that meets monthly. Our church services may be different, but our Mission remains the same! We are called to be a Light that shines in the darkness. For some in our community, state and country the darkness seems very dark. But every time we give a little of ourselves, the Beacon of light from Bethany Lutheran Church shines a little brighter. The Women of the ELCA have chosen several missions to support. We are gathering and donating items that can be a real blessing to others. We have chosen to continue our support of the Lily Bag mission, the Spirit Lake Shoebox Mission, our local Care and Share and our School Supply Gathering The Lily bags will be donated to local hospitals and VIP Centers for those with specific needs due to accident, assault or domestic violence. The “lily bags” include NEW sports bras, underpants, socks and prayer squares, and we are also including tights or jogging shorts.. The Spirit Lake Shoebox mission provides a Christmas gift that includes a book about Jesus and is given to the children directly at their school or daycare. Included in each box are quality “WOW” toy, game, hygiene items, school supplies, hard candy, mittens and stocking hat and prayers. Cash donations will be used to purchase needed items. Care and Share, located in Crookston, is always in need of personal care items and certain clothing items. Lists of needed items will be posted on the silver rack in the Fellowship Hall .Whatever you donate to any of the projects is greatly appreciated and will help support our mission. Further information about WELCA can be obtained from Chris VanEmmerick at firstname.lastname@example.org or 218-253-2053/218-289-3780. WELCA is looking for new board members soon, president, vice president, treasurer, and mission growth. Please reach out to Kathy Murphy or Marion Bjorgon if you are looking for a new way to serve your church. Mary Circle and Dorcas Circle meet once a month at church for a Bible Study. Usually its the first Wednesday of the month with Dorcas in the morning and Mary in the evening. They are always welcoming more women to join them. Another opportunity is the Women’s Bible Study every Wednesday morning at 9:00am. All women are invited to attend this meaningful opportunity for study and fellowship. 4Sunday School (pre-school- 5th grade) is offered Sunday mornings at 9:00am. Grades in 6th and 7th are invited to a pre confirmation class at 9:00am on Sundays as well. Contact Kale Miller by phone at 218-280-2029 or email at email@example.com for further details. There is still time to sign up for this beneficial program. The Christmas Program is being planned and we want all the kids involved. They will be performing during worship on Sunday, December 19th at 10:00am. Please let the teachers know if your child will or will not be able to participate. Confirmation for 8th graders is being held two Sundays mornings (at 9:00am) and two Wednesday evenings (at 6:00pm with a meal) each month. We currently have six students working towards their goals to be confirmed in May of 2022. Please contact Cheryl Matzke at 218-689-2093 or Maureen Hams at 218-698-2184 for meeting dates or other details. Both can also be reached at the church email firstname.lastname@example.org Youth Group is open to all 6-12th graders. They meet one Wednesdy evening a month at 6:00pm starting with a meal served. Jenny Schmitz and Hannah Seeger lead this group and can be reached at email@example.com for meeting dates and more details. Many fun and service related activities have been planned so join us for an evening of fellowship and fun! Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. PSALM 127: 3
5CUSTODIAL/MAINTENANCE/TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT Our church family home is first and foremost a house of prayer and worship, a place of fellowship and learning and a tool for ministry. As “good stewards of God’s many gifts” (1 Peter 4:10) and responsible to each other in our family, we wisely manage our building use. We need to treat use as a privilege not a right, making sure to maintain its safety, cleanliness, and security. To that end, our custodians, Kale Miller and TOm Hovland, have added maintenance to their responsibilities. During Pastor Gary’s tenure, he assumed that responsibility and often asked volunteers (the backbone of our family) to make repairs and do maintenance to ensure our building and equipment were maintained and functional. Being he was the in-charge person overseeing the repairs and updates and since we do not have a permanent pastor, this responsibility has been relegated to Kale and Tom. As in the past, volunteers will be needed to perform the many necessary repairs and updates. What has changed is there is now a systematic procedure is place for handling the above areas. We have established a custodial/maintenance/technology office across from the main office. All maintenance requests will run through this office. Forms can be found in hanging files outside the new office and can be returned.there as well. Kale and Tom will review the request and contact volunteers and/or professionals as needed. If you notice something does not work or needs repairs, please submit a request. These forms give us a systematic record of work/projects being worked on and completed. We must be fiscally responsible to our congregation. Thus, before projects are undertaken, they can be presented to the council for approval. All of the member of Bethany have unique talents and expertise whether woodworking, baking, participating in services and the list goes on and on. If you wish to volunteer sharing your services, contact either the custodial office or the main office. Lists will be compiled for not only maintenance but all activities including worship, meals, funerals, educational programs, office assistance etc. Volunteers- let your light shine! OFFICE ASSISTANT/SECRETARIAL POSITION We are still seeking to fill the vacancy in our church office. Many of us have been volunteering our services since the middle of July completing necessary duties and ensuring consistent office hours. But quite frankly, we need a more permanent solution to our situation. As advertised, this paid position calls for a minimum of 10-14 hours a week, not necessarily all in the office. We have a very flexible schedule and can adjust office hours if necessary, with the potential of an interim pastor coming, it would be necessary to have the office assistant in the office one afternoon or morning as we may adjust our hours. Volunteers can be used to cover the office the other days- we are flexible. Recognizing many of you are engaged in full time employment but may be interested in providing this essential service, contact Cheryl Matzke (218-686-2093) or the church office during current office hours (253-2589) to discuss options including a schedule. As stated previously, we are flexible and are willing to work with you regarding scheduling. Please consider offering your service to Bethany for this paid necessary position.
6BIRTHDAYS AND ANNIVERSARIES We will be sharing birthdays and anniversaries on a weekly basis rather than monthly via the church bulletin. We are in the process of updating our list. If you would like to add names or delete names, contact the church office.
WORLD DIABETES DAY Sunday, November 14 is World Diabetes Day. As a trustee in the Minnesota Lions Diabetes Foundation, I would encourage you to take the at risk test for Type 2 Diabetes. 1 in 2 adults with diabetes remain undiagnosed. The majority have type 2 diabetes. If your at risk test indicates a problem, please see your doctor. There is help! Thank you, Sandy Bertilrud
PARSONAGE UPDATE The parsonage committee headed by Kevin Harmoning and Kale Miller assisted by numerous volunteers has been hard at work this fall updating the parsonage. There is a timeline in place as well as needed volunteer help. Contact Kale is you wish to volunteer your time and they will get back to you regarding projects. Sincere thanks to all who have volunteered their time and work to this special project. It is coming along nicely and cannot wait to see the finished product. God Bless!
FALL DINNER Our recent adventure into learning how to do a “Drive-Thru” Fall Dinner was a great success. With the Covid positive cases being so high when we began planning, we knew it was the health of our church and community that was our top priority. We also knew serving and feeding our church and community is the highlight of our fall. So we scaled back our usual smorgasbord of food to a simple meatball dinner. Then we figured out how to serve it as a drive-thru or a delivery option. We spent the days beforehand planning only to change most of it the night of as we dished up meals. It was a fun adventure as everyone’s ideas came together to serve 239 meals. We hope to do this again in the spring as a way to support out youth group members going to the National Convention. Thank you to all who gave and worked. It is very appreciated. 78
Church Office Hours We are doing our best to keep the church office open set hours for your convenience.
We will have someone available for you from 1- 4:30pm
Tuesday through Friday.
A voice mail can be left after hours and we will
get back to you.
If its an emergency please contact Cheryl at
218-689-2093, or Sherry at 218-689-6943, or Sue at 218-689-7680.
church email @ firstname.lastname@example.org
For Sunday School: Kale Miller @ email@example.com
For Confirmation: Cheryl Matzke @ 219-689-2093 or church email
Maureen Hams @ 218-689-2184 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Announcements/Calendar: Sherry Largis at email@example.com
Website/Facebook: VickiDuden @ 218-791-7020 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Outreach (shut-ins, hospitalizations, etc): please contact the church office at
253-2589, or Cheryl at 218-689-2093, or use the church’s email.Worship!
Bethany Prayer Chain If you wish to request prayers for yourself or a loved one, contact Pastor Gary, Marion Bjorgan, or Linda Hoffman. We'll send your request on to a team of 26 individuals who have committed themselves to praying for your need. Prayer Shawls Anyone needing a prayer shawl either for themselves or for a friend in the hospital can pick one up from the prayer room located just south of the north entryway.
Like Us on Facebook We now have a new Facebook Page for Bethany Lutheran Church! The quickest way to get to us is by clicking on the link on the homepage of our website. Like our Page for updates and events happening at our church!
Amazon Smile You can now donate to Bethany Lutheran Church using Amazon Smile. Be sure you are on the Amazon Smile website (smile.amazon.com) and make your regular purchases. A portion of the sale will be donated directly to Bethany.
Local Food Shelf We now have a box for donations to our local Red Lake Falls Food Shelf. Items they are looking for include: paper towels, toilet paper, kleenex, tooth paste, toothbrushes, deodorant, laundry soap, dish soap, hand soap, shampoo and conditioner.
RSVP Groceries to Go Program The RSVP Groceries to Go Program is recruiting volunteers to assist with grocery shopping for qualified seniors. If you like to shop and are willing to provide a little companionship to a homebound senior, this may be the volunteer position for you. All volunteers will receive training prior to being matched with a client. If you are interested in being a RSVP Groceries to Go volunteer, or you need assistance with grocery shopping or know of someone who needs assistance, call RSVP at 281-8288, or email@example.com.
RSVP Handyman Program The RSVP Handyman Program helps homeowners, age 60+ by providing men or women volunteers to perform minor home maintenance work. RSVP handymen are skilled and trained. Background checks are performed on all volunteers. Volunteers may install grab bars, replace light bulbs, fix leaky faucets, install smoke alarms, etc. Clients do not pay for the labor, only for the needed materials. If you are in need of a Handyman, or would like to volunteer as one, please call RSVP at 281-8288, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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