2022 Ministry Gatherings

Plan to attend one of four Ministry Gatherings. These congregational meetings are a precursor to the annual meeting held on the third Sunday of October per the church constitution. All members should attend one. In 2022 we will gather Sunday, October 9th at 9:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. and on Thursday, October 13th at 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Meetings will be held in the Peel House and conversations around 2023 budget, council nominations, strategic plan and landscaping plan will take place.

2023 Budget Proposal

What makes you proud of your church? I’m so proud of First Lutheran for so many things, but especially the way we have cared for each other over the past couple of years. We truly are a family who loves one another. It’s not just the pastors and staff, but the volunteers and fellow members who are visiting and calling and expressing Christ’s love to members of the church family.

We are a growing family too! We took our hit from the pandemic, and it reset a lot of things, but now our membership is growing again. We have intentionally focused on welcoming young adults and welcoming our neighbors in the Old North End. We have been delighted to see our efforts paying off as new people are joining us in worship the Lord serving God’s mission. It is especially gratifying to see so many young people joining the church!

We have now enjoyed a full year of ministries in the Peel House. members have used the building for Baby showers, weddings and baptism receptions. Dozens of groups from the community have held meetings, trainings, and events in the Peel House. The third floor is now renovated and occupied by Lutheran Family Services Refugee and Asylee program. Over 20 addiction recovery groups are finding healing in the Billiards room and our youth ministries are building momentum in the youth center. We can be proud of how God is using the Peel House to bless our family and community!

Click here to view the 2023 budget proposal that will fund the ministries named above. You’ll notice that not much has changed from our 2022 budget. With the exorbitant increase in inflation this budget focuses on our greatest ministry asset, the staff of First Lutheran. The church council unanimously voted to give a 5% cost of living increase to all staff hired before 2022. This increased the budget by approximately $130,000.00 over the 2022 costs. The increase is less than what many in the marketplace will receive, but we believe it goes a long way to express our desire to take care of the 12 full time and 14 part-time staff members who provide so much for our church family.

We’ve included a new ministry in our local benevolence, One Nation Walking Together, as the congregation responded so enthusiastically to supporting Native Americans in impoverished conditions with our drive over the summer. In addition, we continue to support the Rocky Mountain Lutheran Synod, ELCA global missionaries, Rainbow Trail Camp, The Hanifen Center, Lutheran Family Services, Habitat for Humanity, Family Promise, the Marion House Soup Kitchen, Care & Share and Mosaic. This budget reflects our commitment to share 10% of our offerings, over $200,000.00, outside of our own walls through our ministry partners!

Thank you for carefully considering this ministry plan. Please pray about it and how you and your family can participate through your tithes and offerings. We will have an opportunity to discuss this and other ministry imperatives at our Ministry Gatherings on October 9 and 13. In addition to the budget we will be unveiling the Master Landscaping plan and the new three-year Strategic Plan.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Travis Norton



Landscaping Master Plan

Click on the photo to see the plan

In the winter of 2021 several large trees were blown down on the church campus, including the large Blue Spruce that had become a yearly Christmas tree for the neighborhood. Rather than simply replant the trees, the congregation engaged with NES to develop a master landscaping plan. This plan allows us to pursue goals to make the campus not only beautiful but also a ministry tool of welcome, prayer and youth engagement. Now we can replant in more thoughtful ways towards an overall vision. This is a plan that will likely take a decade to accomplish and comes with a price tag of over $750,000.

2023-2025 Strategic Plan

Click on the graphic to see the plan

Our new strategic plan emphasizes building community among different age groups, honoring our elders, teaching our children and youth how to worship God and being more intentional about our relationships with ministry partners.