Called to Glory – Rev. Charles Johnson 1948-2018

On Tuesday, March 13, 2018, the gracious and merciful Lord Jesus Christ called home His faithful servant Reverend Charles Earl Johnson to be with Him in heaven.

Arrangements are as follows:
Visitation from 5-7 p.m. with prayer service at 7 p.m. Friday, March 23, at Beautiful Savior, 2601 23rd Ave. S Fargo, ND 58103

Funeral at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 24, at Beautiful Savior.

Pastors should bring their red stoles for funeral service.

Click here to read Pastor Johnson’s obituary.

Heavenly Father, into whose keeping we entrust our loved ones, help us to look to You in our time of sorrow, remembering the cloud of faithful witnesses with which we are surrounded. Grant that we may one day share in the joys of those who now rest in your presence; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. (LSB p.316)

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Rural Church Experiences Blessings Working Together

Bethlehem Lutheran Church, organized in 1902, has shared the Gospel of Jesus Christ with people of the Upham, Newburg, Deering, and Towner communities for 116 years. In 1907 it became a two-point parish with St. John’s; in 1999, Bethlehem/St. John became one congregation with Rev. Daryl Rothchild, Pastor.  The present edifice was built in 1950.
             The winter of 2017 saw record snowfall in this north central area of the state and when it melted Bethlehem’s basement was covered with a foot of water. At the July 5, 2017 voter’s meeting, it was decided to abandon the basement and build a 2700 sq. ft. addition to the west of the present structure including parish hall, kitchen, office, and storage room. The front entrance would also be extended allowing ground-level access and a “lift” installed for handicap accessibility. Work began immediately with members using their talents, skills, and resources, giving glory to God. Working together was a time of fellowship and growth among members. The present sanctuary was also painted, and new carpet was installed, giving the entire building a unified appearance and face-lift.
             The record snowfall also became a blessing to this farming community. With very limited rainfall in the spring and summer of 2017, the sub-soil moisture sustained the crops and resulted in a good harvest.  Members were able to make generous contributions to this project, and all the bills have been paid.
             Our first Worship Service was December 17, 2017, five months after starting this project. The parish hall has excellent facilities for bible class with a pull-down screen and all-around sound system. It is great for large gatherings. The kitchen cabinets were cleaned, sanitized, and placed in the new kitchen where they are being used once again. It is a joy to worship and work together with fellow saints in these pleasant surroundings.
             During the summer of 2018, plans are to remodel the present washrooms, making them handicap accessible, also.
All Glory be to God!

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Convention Results

Convention election results are available on the convention page.

Updated after Tuesday’s sessions.

We will be live on Facebook at about 10:30 am (Mountain Time) to hear about “Unity in Mission” by Rev. Zelwyn Heide and at about noon for Installation of all elected officers and close of the convention.

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Mercy Meals Report

Report for LLL Quarterly meeting of 1/9/2018

*Activity this past quarter:

Three events held for Mercy Meals packing

October 21, 2017   –  ND Jr. High Youth Gathering, Bismarck     10,368  meals packed by 124 volunteers

November 15, 2017  –  Zion Lutheran Church, Bismarck              40,626  meals packed by 130 volunteers

December 10, 2017   –   Concordia Lutheran Church, Jamestown       231 meals packed by 6 volunteers

Running total since our first event in 2015 = 230,272 meals packed


Current total in account = $12,612.43

Planned spending for next quarter (approximate):   $10,000. for supplies/product

$150. for new sealers

$130. for gas

*Activities on the calendar

One Mercy Meals event on schedule in March (date TBD) for Grace Point church in Bismarck.  Planning to pack 50,000 meals this time (26,089 last year). Also on the calendar, the ND LWML District Convention on June 22-23 in Minot.

Other groups that have expressed an interest for a date sometime this Spring are Our Savior Lutheran Church in Minot and a Mayville college/community group.


Planning to ship to Liberia (hopefully this month) 96,768 meals.  Waiting for final paperwork before a shipping date is determined.


Respectfully submitted by Andrea Eckstein, President of Mercy Meals of North Dakota

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Do you want something published in the eNews?

Attention!! We have a new editor for the eNews!

Is there something you want published in the eNews and/or Please send your submissions to our Webmaster, Marie, at
The eNews is send it out on or around the first week of every month to people all around our District and beyond.

We’d be more than happy to share information like…

  • A congregational event, celebration, or milestone(including photos!)
  • A family event of one of our called workers (marriage of children, child’s graduation or military service, death of a loved one, etc)
  • A special speaker at your congregation and you want the members of the district invited to join with you.
  • A historical tidbit about your congregation
  • An event or announcement from your District’s task force, committee, auxiliary, or circuit
  • Well, you get the idea…

While you may think the district office knows all this stuff, we probably don’t, and we need you to tell us!


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Orphan Grain Train – North Dakota Branch Newsletter

Check out the October, November, December Newsletter here:

OGT North Dakota Newsletter

Minor correction to the newsletter: The number of Mercy Meals boxes ready to go in the warehouse is 448 (the bigger number included boxes that have already been sent).

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Southeast Circuit Reformation Divine Service

400 members of the congregations of the Southeast Circuit of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod gathered at Trinity Lutheran Church Great Bend on Sunday October 29th to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation. The service was well appreciated. The pastors processed into together and jointly led Divine Service Setting Three with great dignity and reverence. The Sunday School students from the circuit all gathered to sing in unison “Lord Keep us Steadfast in Your Word.” A Circuit Adult Choir sang a motet as well the propers of the day. Holy Communion was received for the forgiveness of all who attended.

Following the worship service, the circuit took a joint photo and then headed to Hankinson for a giant potluck at the local Community Center. An offering totaling over $2500 was collected to support our campus ministry at UND and a new church plant in Watford City, ND.

Attendees came from the following churches – Immanuel Wahpeton, Immanuel Hankinson, St. John’s Belford, Peace, Barney, Trinity Great Bend, Immanuel Lidgerwood, Holy Cross Lidgerwood, Zion Gwinner, Redeemer Lisbon.


Pictures by Serenity Richard Photography. To view more pictures visit:

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Introducing New Business Manager – Tami Ulland

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Adding to the Archives


As congregations celebrate their anniversaries, remember to send a copy of the publications that they make for these events to ND LCMS Archives located in Fargo. Lutheran Annuals from 2004 to 2014, would be greatly appreciated, as well.

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Salary Guidelines

The 2018 Ordained Salary Guidelines are here and ready for your congregation planning.

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Little Free Pantry

You might have heard of Little Free Libraries, that you can put books in and out of, but have you heard of a Little Free Pantry? It’s the same concept as the library, but this box holds food instead of books.
After months of building six pantries for the community, students who go to Career Academy in Bismarck finally got to see their hard work pay off. Boxes were placed at Shepherd of the Valley Church, Bismarck, and Pioneer Elementary School. People who walk by can either take or place a food item in the pantry.

“It’s one of those acts of mercy as Christ cares for us. He cared for us so much that he died and rose again for us, and he wants us to care for those in need. This is just one simple way that we can be caring for people in need,” said Pastor Les Wolfgram.

Click on the link below to see the video in its entirety as it was reported by KFYR TV news.

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Austin Bieri Awarded 2017 North Dakota LCEF Scholarship

Austin is the 2017 North Dakota District (NDD) Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) $1,000 Scholarship winner.

A member of Concordia Lutheran Church, Jamestown, North Dakota, Austin will graduate from Jamestown High School (JHS) this spring. He plans on attending Minnesota State University of Moorhead in the fall.

“The points I like most [about] LCEF’s mission are ‘sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ’ and ‘ensuring that funds and services are available now and in the future,'” wrote Austin in his scholarship essay. “I have served on North Dakota’s LCMS youth council for three years now, and I know firsthand how incredibly pleasing it is to share God’s Word . . . and how difficult and expensive it can be. …It’s comforting to know that a Christ-centered organization is out there and willing to help.”

Both Austin’s pastor, Rev. Tom Eckstein, and his JHS English Teacher and National Honor Society Advisor Tammy Mullowney wrote about Austin’s involvement at church, his extensive leadership skills and a willingness to serve in their letters of recommendation.

“Most notably, Austin is the President of North Dakota Lutheran Youth Fellowship. …Austin’s ability to successfully juggle school, work and a state office is a testament to his responsible and serving nature,” wrote Mullowney.

North Dakota District LCEF is blessed to provide annual scholarships to active, faith-filled Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS) students such as Austin. A total of 16 scholarships were chosen this spring. There are seven scholarships remaining to be announced; three from Minnesota South District and four from North Wisconsin District. Follow our newsfeed and Facebook page for the most current awards.

For more information on how you can become an investment or loan partner with the ministry of church extension, visit or call 800-843-5233.

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