Showing posts from May, 2022

Another Monumental Event, Another Downpour

Three years ago during CMSCR's last in-person graduation service , it poured.  Last September, the school/seminary opening service shifted inside to keep everyone dry (I was on home service and missed all the fun).  And Friday night, the skies opened up mere minutes before the scheduled 5:00 pm start time of the commencement service for 12 deaconess students and 3 pastoral formation students. Oh yeah, the power flickered off, too, but never fear: Rev. Ted Krey, yelling to make himself heard with no mic, helped lead the antsy crowd in an impromptu hymn sing until the rain abated enough for a "processional."  A dozen new DRLM deaconesses (less a few who arrived fashionably late and missed formal pictures), together with the CMSCR faculty members who poured blood, sweat, and tears into their formation, writing the curriculum a course at a time as these ladies - and 93 others elsewhere in the region - advanced through their studies.  Residential pastoral formation graduates

It’s Happening

My daily Bible reading today began with 1 Chronicles 23, a chapter entitled "David Organizes the Levites" in the ESV. Read a portion of it (v. 2-5) with me: David assembled all the leaders of Israel and the priests and the Levites. The Levites, thirty years old and upward, were numbered, and the total was 38,000 men. “Twenty-four thousand of these,” David said, “shall have charge of the work in the house of the Lord, 6,000 shall be officers and judges, 4,000 gatekeepers, and 4,000 shall offer praises to the Lord with the instruments that I have made for praise.” And David organized them in divisions corresponding to the sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. Having just been part of the team that hosted Concordia the Reformer Seminary's V Annual Theological Symposium, with somewhere in the neighborhood of 70-80 guests, I can not fathom what went into coordinating 38,000. Without Microsoft Excel.  Planning discussions got going around the start of the New Year, key pe

Way Better than School

Symposium week is upon us - six of the craziest days of the year in Santiago, when church leaders from across the region converge for a deep dive into a topic selected by the seminary faculty (this year:  Himnario Luterano  and the role of song in the liturgy and in the Church). Throw in students, the local team, and missionary support staff (this includes me), and the meal head count comes to ~80. More on that soon.  Before I could fully  shift into Symposium mode, I got to host these 10 lovely humans - two staff members and eight students from Concordia University in Seward, NE. I can't brag on them enough; they rolled with the punches and were a delight to be around. I wasn't completely and totally exhausted by the time they left, for a number of reasons, although they might have been, after a full week of "mission education." Despite being in constant learning mode, this immersive cross-cultural experience was, and I quote, "way better than school." Anec

Labor Day Weekend

I have no idea how it's May 9 already, but it dawned on me that's it's been TOO long since my last post. It really has been a relatively quiet, "normal" ~6 weeks or so of prepping for craziness that starts with the arrival of a short-term team on Wednesday and continues with a theological symposium, a family wedding in St. Louis, a family vacation in the DR, the LCMS Gathering in Houston, a Higher Things conference in Bozeman, and our regional conference. And then it's August! May 1 is Labor Day here. This year, it fell on a Sunday > the government gifted us with a long weekend > my friends Kelsey & Franco came to visit from Santo Domingo! I told them they could crash at my place even though there may  not always be water (there wasn't). Franco put on his engineer cap one afternoon, though, running back and forth between the pump, the rooftop tinaco , and my kitchen sink; he taught me a trick for priming the water pump that's been a GAME. CHA