Guest Blog: ELM: The ELCA’s Best Kept Secret

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2016 Proclaim Gathering. Photo credit: Emily Ann Garcia
2016 Proclaim Gathering. Photo credit: Emily Ann Garcia



“Share the good news of the ground that ELM is breaking in congregations like yours!”





by Deacon Lauren Morse-Wendt
Proclaim Member and Mission and Ministry Developer, Edina Community Lutheran Church, MN

It’s no secret that Lutherans are passionate about caring for our neighbors, both local and global.  Whether your congregation is engaged in ending hunger, disaster response, sheltering families, or combatting malaria, the story is likely told, as it should be, from the pulpit, in the newsletter, and during coffee time banter.  At our congregation, Edina Community Lutheran Church, we’re sharing another powerful story: the life-giving ministry of Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries.
In 2016, there are:
♦  239 Proclaim members
♦  139 Proclaim members serving congregations and faith settings across nearly every synod
♦  68 Proclaims being accompanied as they go through Candidacy and await first call
Expanding the Party
We have so much to celebrate as LGBTQ ministry continues to grow in our Church — it’s time to invite all members of all ELCA congregations to the party!  As friends and supporters of ELM, I’d like us to commit together to unleashing what I’m calling the ELCA’s Best Kept Secret . . . and share the good news of the ground that ELM is breaking in congregations just like yours.   How can we expand the party? Here’s a few ideas:
♦  Invite a Proclaim member or ELM staffer to share their story during a worship temple talk, adult forum, or with a high school youth group
♦  Meet with your Outreach Committee or Church Council to discuss annual congregational financial support for ELM
♦  Share why you are passionate about ELM & LGBTQ ministry during a worship temple talk or congregational meeting
♦  Write an article or share an ELM blog post in your congregation’s newsletter or community bulletin board
Celebrate the Blessing of LGBTQ Rostered Leadership
We in the ELCA have so much to celebrate as more and more congregations are blessed by the ministry of LGBTQ rostered leaders — and I’d love to see each one of our congregations touched by the ministry of ELM celebrating that ministry during worship or education time and making a financial gift.  Join me in 2016 and invite your entire congregation to join in the party.  Because, really, we all know ELM knows how to throw a good party . . . and, there’s always room for more!

Lauren Morse-Wendt is a Diaconal Minister who serves Edina Community Lutheran Church. She’s excited for Halloween, when her wife will take their 4 year old Spiderman trick-or-treating because Lauren feels too guilty to leave trick-or-treaters at their house empty handed!

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