from The Rev. Mark S. Hanson, Presiding Bishop Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
We are a church that is deeply rooted and always being made new. As we gather for worship this morning, may the Holy Spirit fill and guide us, so that we may be a church that is both resillient and always reforming.
In less than a year, we will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the ELCA. As we celebrate, we look back at the people and events that have shaped us as a church.
Join us in celebrating the stories that have made us vibrant and distinctive yet brought us together as nearly 10,000 congregations, 65 synods and numerous churchwide ministries freed in Christ to love and serve neighbors in our own communities and around the world.
What God has done through us is indeed worth celebrating. In 25 years, we have:
- Started 435 new congregations
- Ordained nearly 8,000 pastors
- Sent more than 2,000 missionaries to serve around the world
- Contributed more than $350 million toward the alleviation of hunger and poverty
The year of our 25th anniversary begins Jan. 1, 2013, with the theme “Always being made new.” I invite you to join me in celebrating these 25 years together in Christ. Visit www.ELCA.org/25years for more information, and begin planning ways to bring this celebration to your congregation. Resources will also be available to help you celebrate this important milestone in your own congregation and community.
I am grateful for your leadership, support and prayers in making the work of this church possible.