ELCA NEWS SERVICE
October 4, 2011
ELCA Fund for Leaders honors 2011-2012 scholarship recipients
CHICAGO (ELCA) - As part of its commitment to supporting seminary students preparing for ministry, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Fund for Leaders honored 19 seminarians with full-tuition scholarships for the 2011-2012 academic year.
The students were honored Sept. 30 at a banquet attended by ELCA synod bishops, seminary presidents, churchwide leaders and supporters of the Fund for Leaders. Each student is enrolled in one of the eight ELCA seminaries.
At the banquet, ELCA Presiding Bishop Mark S. Hanson offered some advice to the scholarship recipients. "Maintain high expectations of the Holy Spirit, and do not lose that unquenchable curiosity of faith," he said, adding that this church's investment in preparing its leaders "will yield returns beyond a life time."
Hanson said he remains "hopeful and grateful" for this church more than he has ever been. "We are a church centered in word and water, bread and wine. God has called you by name, and there is a place for you in this church," he said.
Hanson thanked the ELCA seminaries and the 65 synods of this church for their role in developing new leaders, as well as colleagues at the churchwide organization and contributors to the ELCA Fund for Leaders.
Individuals contributing significant gifts to ELCA Fund for Leaders were also recognized at the banquet.
Students who received full-tuition scholarships for the 2011-2012 academic year, each studying for a master of divinity degree, are:
+ Douglas Barclay, Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, ELCA Fund for Leaders and the Irma Lauffer Endowment Scholarship
+ Shawn Brooks, Wartburg Theological Seminary, Dubuque, Iowa, ELCA Fund for Leaders and the Rev. Eric Wogen Endowment Scholarship
+ McFred Brown, Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg (Pa.), Holpp Family Endowment Scholarship
+ Deborah Cote, Wartburg Theological Seminary, Astrid V. Wilson Endowment Scholarship
+Maggie Garberg, Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, Berkeley, Calif., Omer G. & Annabelle K. Voss Endowment Scholarship and the Norman and Margaret Erckmann Fund
+ Inger Hanson, Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, the Rev. Dr. E. Earl Anderson Endowment Scholarship
+ Brach Jennings, Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, John and Sharon Haugo ELCA Fund for Leaders Endowment Scholarship
+ Lucas Merritt, Trinity Lutheran Seminary, Columbus, Ohio, Bethel Lutheran Church (Chicago) Endowment Scholarship
+ Sarah Milbrodt, Trinity Lutheran Seminary, ELCA Fund for Leaders and the ELCA Northwestern Ohio Synod Scholarship
+ Brian Rajcok, Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minn., Herlein Family Endowment Scholarship
+ Sarah Rossing, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, J. Binnie Wolfe Endowment Scholarship
+ Kyle Severson, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Paul Dauten Jr. Memorial ELCA Fund for Leaders Scholarship
+ James Smith, Lutheran School of Theology at Gettysburg, ELCA Fund for Leaders and the Rev. Jeanette Bialas Strandjord Scholarship
+ Samantha Wertz, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, S.C., the Rev. Olaf A. Berge Endowment Scholarship
+ Anne White, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, L. Travis & Jean M. Brannon Endowment Scholarship
+ Kristen Wilcox, Luther Seminary, Duane & Phyllis Sander Endowment Scholarship
Three of the 19 students received awards from the Mission Developer Scholarship Fund of the ELCA Mission Investment Fund. Started in 2010, the Mission Developer Scholarship Fund is designed to support future pastors called to start new ELCA congregations. This Fund was started with a $1.5 million matching challenge from the ELCA Mission Investment Fund.
Students receiving this scholarship are:
+ Daniel Forehand, Trinity Lutheran Seminary
+ Kayla Nelson, Luther Seminary
+ Jocelyn Ranaivoson, Wartburg Theological Seminary
"The Mission Investment Fund's mission is to help grow the Lutheran church. What better way to support the growth of this church than by educating our future leaders?" said Eva Roby, president and CEO of the Mission Investment Fund.
"The Mission Investment Fund's $1.5 million challenge grant is providing the seminary with scholarships so vital to the young people who have made a commitment to serve as mission developers, starting up new congregations and encouraging our church to flourish," she said.
In addition to the 19 honored at the banquet, another 16 seminary students were awarded partial-tuition scholarships from the ELCA Fund for Leaders. Another 94 students were awarded scholarships from the ELCA's 65 synods.
Now in its 11th year, the Fund for Leaders is an ELCA initiative to build an endowed scholarship resource to provide tuition assistance for qualified candidates studying at ELCA seminaries. When fully endowed, the fund's goal is to provide full-tuition assistance for every ELCA seminary student committed to a future in parish ministry.
According to the Rev. Donald M. Hallberg, interim director for ELCA Fund for Leaders in Mission, the fund's value today is about $30 million. Since its inception, the Fund has supported about 800 students and distributed $7 million in scholarships, he said.
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Information about the ELCA Fund for Leaders in Mission is available at http://www.ELCA.org/fundforleaders on the ELCA website.
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About the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA)
The ELCA is one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States, with approximately 4.5 million members in more than 10,000 congregations across the 50 states and in the Caribbean region. Known as the church of "God's work. Our hands," the ELCA emphasizes the saving grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, unity among Christians and service in the world. The ELCA's roots are in the writings of the German church reformer, Martin Luther.
For information contact:
Melissa Ramirez Cooper
773-380-2956 or Melissa.RamirezCooper@elca.org
Living Lutheran: http://www.livinglutheran.com