Carroll Lutheran Village Restarts Ministry Program Offering Help, Hope and Healing

By: Christopher Findlay

June 1, 2022

Two years after the pandemic shut down our member Lutheran Social Ministry of Maryland’s Stephen Ministries program at Carroll Lutheran Village, their team returned to resume its work walking alongside residents through depression, loneliness, family loss and other challenging issues. Ministry leader Jay King feels lucky that Stephen Ministries allows him to do what he loves—empowering others.

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Empowering Older Americans to Age Their Way

May 2, 2022

By: Christopher Findlay

We are excited to celebrate Older Americans Month with our partners in the aging community.

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LSS of Southern California Offers a Basket of Hope on Easter

April 27, 2022

By: Christopher Findlay

Elizabeth came to Lutheran Social Services of Southern California after her husband lost his job. LSS stepped in to support Elizabeth and her family in their time of need.

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Positive Impact of iN2L Tablets on Senior Living Residents and Staff

April 26, 2022

By: Christopher Findlay

iN2L shares some of the key results from its work on the first two phases of Project VITAL, which examined how technology and community resources could be leveraged to combat social isolation and loneliness for older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Lutheran Services in America Urges CMS to Reconsider Skilled Nursing Facility Initiative

April 19, 2022

By: Christopher Findlay

Lutheran Services in America Urges CMS to Reconsider Skilled Nursing Facility Initiative, Seeks Member Data In response to the recently announced plan by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to establish a minimum staffing requirement that would increase staffing in skilled nursing facilities (without additional funding), along with expanded..

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Reflections: In gratitude for all that you do

As leaders of organizations centered and rooted in faith, we draw strength from each other as we persist in our mission to bring hope and healing to people.

I began a weekly CEO Update at the start of the pandemic because I thought it was important to stay in touch and communicate through a dark and uncertain time. As one of the largest nonprofit health and human services networks that cares for one in 50 people in America, we were hit especially hard by the pandemic.

While some CEO Updates were about important advocacy issues or programs, others were more reflective. I always received feedback from member CEOs on the reflections—notes like “I really needed that today” which kept me going.

One of my board members suggested that I compile the reflections together. As I look back, it’s clear that where we thought we’d be along the way changed—often—and mostly in ways that brought more challenges and hardships to Lutheran social ministry.

What was also clear was the extraordinary leadership, creativity and perseverance that you and leaders throughout the network demonstrated—examples of true leadership to adapt to never-before-seen situations and lead your teams with grace and courage. Lutheran social ministry stood up when we were most needed and you and your teams are the Front Line Heroes that we lift up for your life-saving work.

These Reflections are dedicated to you—for your remarkable leadership and our extraordinary journey together.

Extravagance of Grace

Today is the 505th anniversary of the Reformation when Martin Luther shared his theological insight that God’s gift of grace in Jesus Christ frees us from being focused on ourselves and opens us to care for others. Or as CEO Summit Theologian-in-Residence Pastor Mark Huber once put it, “it means it’s not about us.”

How is this relevant or reflected in Lutheran social ministry organizations today?

The foundation of our work is that all people have dignity and worth—not because of anything they do or don’t do but simply because they are—and that they are valued by God. As Lutheran social ministry, we create the space where people experience God’s grace through our care and compassion. It’s the why behind our work and reflected in how we do our work, in relationship with our neighbor, no matter who are neighbor is, where they’re from, or what they do.

So why does this matter?

God’s grace is extravagant and is revealed in the beauty and light we let into people’s lives, to remove the barriers that hold them back from achieving their potential and to empower them to realize their dreams. It’s why we persevere despite having to continually pivot and be stretched and stressed. It’s our calling, our vocation.

In the midst of our challenges and an uncertain future, may we remember that our presence matters, that our work brings more light and beauty into people’s lives, and that we do not do this work alone.