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Gifting - Growing - Serving

Capital Campaign Newsletter #2

Enrichment Gatherings

Michael Burnett, Enrichment Gatherings Co-DirectorMichael Burnett, Enrichment Gatherings Co-Director

LCH has embarked upon an exciting journey: a campaign to enhance and expand the ministry and mission of our congregation, “Gifting, Growing, Serving.” To accomplish this, we have established financial and programmatic goals, but as important as meeting those goals will be the opportunity for involvement with new and old friends. One way this interaction of friends takes place is in Enrichment Gatherings.

Small group gatherings have a long history in the Christian community. The first century church seems to have taken very seriously the statement, “where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them” (Matthew 18:20). While we hope there will be more than two or three at each Enrichment Gathering, they will provide a setting where we can feel Christ's presence and become inspired, informed, and involved.

Enrichment Gatherings will help strengthen our fellowship, encourage dialogue, allow us to spark one another’s interest, and listen to feedback. Each gathering will include a time of fellowship, showing of the video being developed by Paul Benco and the A/V Team, and a discussion about the Capital Campaign. No one will ask for money or pledges for the campaign. It will be a time of listening, sharing, and commitment to the mission of our congregation.

Some Enrichment Gatherings will be held during the evenings of the week of October 26 in homes located in various neighborhoods. On two Sundays, October 26 and November 2, Gatherings will be held after the 10:30 worship services at Luther Place, the apartment complex/preschool addition adjacent to the church.

Each member or friend of LCH will be able to select the Enrichment Gathering that is most convenient in terms of time, day, and location (within the space limitations of members’ homes). During the month of October we will have sign up sheets at Sunday worship services, and committee members will be telephoning to confirm and encourage attendance.

Please accept the invitation to participate in one of these small group meetings and consider signing up for a group that you might not have interaction with ordinarily. We can expand our own fellowship, perhaps meet new people, and strengthen the vision for the mission and ministry of LCH.

Members of the Enrichment Gatherings Team
The Enrichment Gatherings committee: (L-R) Michael Burnett, Paul Fujii, Roy Helms, Carol Langner. Not pictured: Stephanie Miller and April Smith.

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24-Hour Prayer Vigil

Jim Sullivan, Prayer Vigil DirectorJim Sullivan, Prayer Vigil Director

What does the 24-Hour Prayer Vigil have to do with our Capital Campaign? I am reminded of the answer that one of my instructors used to give when he asked rhetorical questions, “That depends.” If you take the secular approach to fund raising, then the Prayer Vigil doesn’t mean much. However, we are a church community, and as such we seek to grow spiritually and minister to others. This is reflected in our campaign, “Gifting, Growing, Serving.” From this perspective the Prayer Vigil is vital to helping us to gather as a community, participate in the ministry of prayer for others, and seek God’s will individually and corporately.

Every event in the Capital Fund Campaign is designed to draw us closer to each other, to help us grow spiritually, and to encourage us to reach out in service to others. The first event was the Bible Study, which developed an understanding of stewardship which gives us a firm foundation for our efforts. The second is the series of Enrichment Gatherings, where we have the opportunity to get to know each other better and develop our understanding of the campaign itself. The third event is the 24-Hour Prayer Vigil, starting at noon on Friday, November 7, and lasting until noon on Saturday, November 8.

The Prayer Vigil is for everyone! We encourage everyone in the LCH family to commit to one of the 24 hours. All age groups can participate, and even those who cannot physically attend can pray at home for a designated hour. Families of all sizes and configurations are encouraged to participate together. All you have to do is sign up for an hour or more of your choosing on the list that will be available at church.

Another way to participate in the Prayer Vigil is by submitting a prayer request. Request cards will be available at worship and at the Enrichment Gatherings. All you have to do is fill one out and put it in the offering plate, give it to the facilitator at an Enrichment Gathering, or deliver it to the church office. You can even submit an electronic request via the church web site (www.LCHwelcome.org/capital/vigil.html). Of course, we also welcome requests from or for others outside LCH.

During the Prayer Vigil, those who are able will pray in the nave of the church, and others will pray at home or in other locations. Planning for the Vigil is still underway, but we hope to designate some special healing times and have anointing with oil available during those periods. If you have other ideas that will enrich the Vigil, please let me know.

Paul exhorts us in I Thessalonians to “pray without ceasing,” and we participate in a prayer vigil every Sunday. The liturgy is based on prayer—beginning with adoration and praise, then confession, followed by psalms of thanksgiving and ending with intercession in the prayer bids. All of this prayer prepares us to enter into the fellowship of communion. The 24-Hour Prayer Vigil gives us an opportunity to extend our prayers even farther.

Please plan now to participate in the Prayer Vigil and ask others to join you. This is an event for everyone!

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How Much Have I Received?

Bill Potter, Promotion Team Co-DirectorBill Potter, Promotion Team Co-Director

Jesus sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. A poor widow came and put two small copper coins, which are worth a penny. Then Jesus called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury. For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.” Mark 12:41–44

In a recent edition of The Heart Beat, Pastor Barber wrote about the great loss if the Lutheran Church of Honolulu did not exist. Fortunately for us and for our community, through divine providence and the commitment of the women and men of this congregation for more than one hundred years, this is not the case.

These commitments have taken many forms. In 1900, two rich merchants, Heinrich Hackfeld and Paul Isenberg, put up all the money to construct the first church building and import a pastor and an organ from Germany. In the early 1950s, church members contributed their own labor to build the new church on Punahou. When the Beckerath organ was purchased in the 1970s, 170 individuals, couples, and organizations contributed to the “buy a pipe” fund. All of these gifts—and many, many more over the years—working together have brought LCH to where we are now.

Our theme of “Gifting, Growing, Serving” carries a number of important truths in three small words, but perhaps the most important comes from the word “gifting.” Hymn 410 in the Lutheran Book of Worship reminds us “All that we have is thine alone, a trust, O Lord, from thee.” When we contribute to the support of God’s work in the world, rather than giving of what we have earned, we are returning a part of the extravagant gifts God has given us. That being the case, instead of “How much can I give?” or “How much should I give?” the real question we should be asking ourselves is “How much have I received?”

Prayerful consideration of this question leads us to understand that we are loved by a God of abundant grace and that we have each received more than we can count. The generous hearts of those who came before us in the Lutheran Church of Honolulu, with the blessing of God's love, have brought us here, and now it is our turn to respond and prayerfully consider “How much will I give?”

Of course, there is no easy answer to this question. Each of us is in a different place in our faith journey and a different financial situation. Some of us may be like Heinrich Hackfeld or Paul Isenberg, while others of us may be more like the person who could give only the very smallest pipe for the organ.

When we see reports of fund raising in the program of a musical, theatrical or charitable organization, the donors are often listed in categories, with the individuals who made the biggest contributions listed first, usually in bigger print. Sometimes those who made small donations are not even named. Mark’s gospel, quoted above, tells us that Jesus did not look at who made the biggest contribution, but at who responded most generously. In gratitude for what she had received, the widow put in all that she had.

Generous hearts are a reflection of abundant grace received. God has blessed us generously as individuals and as a congregation. Our Capital Campaign is an opportunity to respond generously to God’s grace.

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Preschool Renovations—One of the First Capital Campaign Projects

Our Capital Campaign encompasses a variety of projects, and one of our first priorities is renovation of facilities associated with the LCH Preschool. The Preschool provides an atmosphere which nurtures a child’s spiritual growth and meets the needs of children aged 2 through 5 to learn and develop through play and early childhood experiences. The Preschool helps to meet the real child care needs of the surrounding community.

There is a very real need for quality, affordable daycare for children aged 2 to 5 in the Makiki/Manoa area. In many instances, preschool represents a child’s first experiences of separation from home, interacting with a peer group, and relating to a substitute parent figure. Because working hours vary, there is a need for quality daycare beginning as early as 6:00 a.m. and ending as late as 6:00 p.m. This means that many children eat breakfast, morning snack, lunch, and afternoon snack away from home.

Renovation projects connected with the Preschool will allow us to do an even better job meeting the needs of our community, but they will also enhance the congregation’s ministry to our own children and youth. Individual projects are described below.

Plans for Preschool Office and RestroomsPreschool Office, Restrooms, and Lanai. The present lanai will be enclosed to create a new office for the Preschool and a more secure entrance for parents as they log their children in and out each day. There will also be new bathrooms for the children and a new covered lanai and walkway. Security during school hours will be improved because children will not be sharing restroom space with other users of the facility. Once new bathrooms have been built in the Preschool area, we will be able to renovate the existing bathrooms.

Luther Place Playground. A shock-absorbent surface material and new playground equipment will be installed. The playground will meet Americans with Disabilities guidelines and the equipment will be age appropriate.

Kitchen Renovation. At present, our kitchen does not meet code and so it cannot be used to prepare or even warm up meals and snacks for the Preschool. Built in 1953, the kitchen and its equipment and facilities were designed for home rather than for institutional use. The second-hand refrigerators were donated to the school after many years of service, and the stove, which only has four burners, is rusted and woefully inadequate. In addition, dishes cannot be washed due to the lack of a proper, sanitizing dishwasher and grease trap.

The kitchen will be brought up to code with grease traps, stove hoods, and new appliances, counters, and cupboards. As an approved kitchen, it will be possible to prepare some food for Preschool meals rather than having all food catered. It would also be possible to provide a cost-effective and nutritious take-a-way dinner service for working parents. Of course, a modern kitchen will also facilitate more and better fellowship activities for our congregation.

Preschool Parking Lot Resurfacing. The parking lot behind the church buildings will be redesigned to meet current building code. This will provide a safe drop-off zone for preschool parents, more handicapped parking, and off-street parking for the preschool teachers. It will also improve parking at worship services.

Plans for Repaving of Preschool Parking Lot

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