Lutherans in the Twin Cities

Thrivent to support Twin Cities campus effort to involve alums

The Lutheran Campus Ministry—Twin Cities service team collected and bagged food to be distributed by Community Emergency Services of Minneapolis during the Thanksgiving holiday in 2012. Photo provided by Lutheran Campus Ministry

Lutheran Campus Ministry—Twin Cities (LCM—TC) recently received a $12,500 capacity-building grant from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans to find former participants in Lutheran Campus Ministry, and its earlier iteration, Lutheran Student Association. LCM—TC plans to use this grant to locate alumni, connect with them, and finally establish a web of alumni to help in the effort to tell the powerful story of the impact LCM-TC has had on individual lives. It will also provide ongoing financial support to its ministry.

“This grant represents an important step forward in the strengthening of this local ministry,” explained the Rev. Kate Reuer Welton, campus chaplain. “There is a benefit to having campus ministry closely related to local ministry in an area,” she told Metro Lutheran.

In the last decade, funding for the campus ministries of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) across the country has shifted away from the national organization to local groups, with each ministry encouraged to raise its own funding.

With Thrivent’s grant, Lutheran Campus Ministry will be able to broaden and strengthen its funding network, proving that the ELCA is committed to being on campus for good, explained the Rev. Kate Reuer Welton.

Locally, LCM—TC has received one-third of its budget from national and synodical expressions of the ELCA, and the remaining two-thirds of the funding is raised by board and staff, with significant contributions from individuals and congregations in the Minneapolis and St. Paul Area Synods.

Historically, the six Minnesota synods of the ELCA have provided funding for the state’s eight campus ministries through a common foundation. Recently, the St. Paul Area Synod in assembly passed a resolution to gradually pull out from this funding formula in order to provide more funding to the campus within its geographic location.

Looking for ambassadors for campus ministry

With Thrivent’s grant, LCM—TC will be able to broaden and strengthen its funding network, proving that the ELCA is committed to being on campus for good, explained Reuer Welton. “The timing couldn’t be better, as LCM—TC’s 100th anniversary is in 2014,” she added.

“The Thrivent grant is helpful in giving human resources to dedicate to finding people who can tell our wonderful story,” said Reuer Welton. The Thrivent grant will enable a student research assistant already involved with the University of Minnesota’s campus ministry to develop and maintain a database to support the work, she explained.

“If you are an alumni of LCM, LCM-TC would like to know,” said Reuer Welton. “If you are in touch with people from your LCM years, let us know that as well. And, finally, if you know people in your congregation who are alumni, we want to be in touch with you!”

Alumni can contact LCM at luke@umnlutheran.org to learn how to support this project.

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