Welcome to the Minnesota North District - Brainerd / Baxter, MN
Our Mission: The mission of the Minnesota North District of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod is to further the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) and to assist congregations as Great Commission churches.
We're Here To Serve You!
Dear Friends in Christ;
I received a letter that was addressed to the church I was serving. The letter was sent from a family that had recently moved to Kansas and I assumed that it was a letter requesting a transfer of membership. I opened the letter and was greeted with the salutation; “Dear ABC Lutheran Church family.” In the letter, she expressed her thanks to people she had come to view as her church family. In the letter, she spoke about how difficult it was to connect with a new church home. Every church she attended in her new community was different from the one she had left behind and felt so much a part of. She was feeling homesick for her church home. She didn’t realize how much she had looked forward to those Sunday morning meetings at the church. But then she wondered if, in her connections she made at the ABC Lutheran Church, she had not noticed the new people who had moved into ABC town and visited the church and felt the coldness and isolation of being a new person in a strange church. Everyone around you is busy chatting and having a good time, but you are not a part of them. How lonely that felt. Perhaps they had left a wonderful church home and were searching for a new home. They didn’t realize that they were visiting one of those wonderful loving churches when they came to ABC Lutheran Church.
Through her letter, I had the opportunity to see the church through visitor eyes. We can talk about having the purest doctrine, the most pristine worship, the most conservative communion practice, the most authentic blah, blah, blah. But then I see 1 Corinthians 13 – “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become a sounding brass or a clanging symbol. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all the mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.”
Everything we do means nothing, if we do not love. Not just the ones you know who are already members of the church family, but love the widow and the orphaned, the visitor and the homeless, the sick and the needy, the rich and the poor. We want to be that loving congregation that people call home. In our home, we welcome guests as if they are expected and wanted.
Look at your church home through visitor eyes. Will they see what we have come to know and appreciate in this church home? Will they be warmly greeted? Will we provide them with a clear, uncomplicated order of worship that they can follow along as though they have been a part of this church family for years? Is the Gospel presented clearly in the message preached? Is the love of Christ evident in and through each of the members that interact with that visitor on a Sunday morning?
I spoke to a group of elders about the importance of welcoming people to worship services and how important it was to speak to new people. One elder said, “I would, but they bee line it out of the church right after the worship service and I don’t get the opportunity to say boo to them.” “But”, I said, “that should speak volumes to how well they were welcomed before the service. They felt so uncomfortable that they couldn’t wait to get out of here.” We need to do a better job of welcoming guests. If we do not love, they won’t hear the Good News in that place, the coldness will distract them from that proclamation that Jesus loves them. Jesus died for them. By grace, through faith in Christ Jesus our savior, we are a family who is charged with the responsibility of loving each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. We have been set free from the bondage of sin death and hell. We have been redeemed in the blood of Jesus. We are one! We are loved! We should be loving.
In His Service,
Rev. Jeffrey A. Lee
Top 6 Reasons Why People Leave a Church (research from Lifeway Research, SBC)
1. Move of residence
2. Change in life circumstance (illness, schedule, work, divorce)
3. Problems in church
The Top Ten Reasons People Pick Specific Church to Join from a survey by Barna Research
The theological beliefs and doctrine of church.
The people seem to care about each other.
The quality of the sermons that are preached.
How friendly the people are to visitors.
How involved the church is in helping poor and disadvantaged people.
The quality of the programs and classes children.
How much you like the pastor.
The denomination the church is affiliated with.
The quality of the adult Sunday School classes.
The convenience of the times of their weekend.
|MN North District Office Staff|
|Links to Project 24 Information|
|Project 24 and Related Programs|
|Project 24 Sent to Share Christ's Healing Grace|
|Project 24: Orphan Rescue Centers|
|List of Conferences and Circuits|
|Ministerial Health Commission|
|Board of Directors|
|Board of Directors Meeting Minutes|
|Facilitators in District Office|
|Serving on MNN Boards-Committees 10-14-14|
|MNN Conferences and Circuits|
|Crisis Consultation and Support Team|
|Northern Crossings Blog|
|MaCO - Missional and Congregational Outreach|
|PLaN - Parish Life and Nurture|
|New Churches and Ministries|
|American Indian Outreach|
|Fargo Hospital Chaplaincy|
|Outdoor Ministry - LIC (Lutheran Island Camp)|
|MAWFC Mission Projects|
|MaCO Statement and Members|
|Reaching Rural America for Christ|
|Congregational Health Ministry-Parish Nursing|
|Lutheran Witness - Minnesota North Insert|
|2016 Salary Guidelines|
|District Calendar of Events|
|Prayer, Praise and Thanks|
|MNN District Prayer Calendar - October 2015|
|Deaf Ministry Calendar - October 2015|
|LCEF - Lutheran Church Extension Fund|
|The Lutheran Witness and Reporter - June-July 2015|
|The Lutheran Witness and Reporter Publication Dates|
|Lutheran Witness - October 2015|
|LCEF - PartnerPLUS|
|LCEF YI Club - Give an Extraordinary Gift|
|Investment Rates September 2015|
|Loan Interest Rates September 2015|
|A Preaching Series for Advent and Lent|
|Pre-retirement Workshop January 10-11, 2016 at LIC|
|Youth Ministry and Events|
|2016 Bible Bowl - March 1, 2016|
|2016 LCMS Youth Gathering|
|Synod Youth Ministry|
|The CROSS Appeal|
|Gifty Student Aid|
|Updates from Pastor Kollie - Cotton Tree, Liberia|
|Julie McManus in Kenya|
|Rev. Aaron Bell, Chaplain for the United States Navy|
|Youth Gathering Information on its way to Congregations|
|For Sale - Give Away - Wanted|
|New Book Available by Local Pastor|
|Check out the “Northern Crossings” blog|
|Special Reformation grant opportunity coming this fall|
|Treasurer and Financial Secretary Information|
|UPDATE to IRS Tax Mileage Rate|
|TLCare Ministry - Rochester, MN|
|2016 MNN NYG District Co-Coordinators|
|2016 LCMS National Youth Gathering Notes from the District coordinators.|
|Attention Treasurers and Financial Secretaries|
|Congregation Treasurers - Form 8822-B|
|2015 Stewardship Materials Overview|
|2014 Stewardship Materials|
|2013 Stewardship Materials|
|Our Vocation is Stewardship - Rev. Dr. Karl Weber|
|Biblical Stewardship Principles|
|2012 MNN District Handbook|
|MNN Constitutions and By-Laws and Guidelines - Full revised 2-13-12|
|Student Aid Policies (and link to application)|
|The MNN District Archives|
|What Church Records Should You be Saving|
|Preserving Church Documents and Information|
|10 Marriage and Family Resources|
|Daily Dozen of Christian Parenting|
|Witness/Mercy/Life Together Divine Service Available|
|2013 Synod Handbook|
|2015 Salary Guidelines|
|Introduction to 2015 Stewardship Materials|
|Links to 2015 Stewardship Materials|
|Consecration Sunday Bible Studies|