A Good and Godly Spirit

I believe there is a good and Godly Spirit present here. I feel it on Sunday morning when people greet one another with warm embraces and wide smiles. I hear it in the laughter of our children as they slide out of their pews during worship for kid’s time. I see it on days like […]

Serve and Obey

“I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth… What is this? Or What does this mean?” Hopefully these words are somewhat familiar. The first half of the phrase is the first article of the Apostles’ Creed. The second half is Martin Luther’s question for each part of his confession (explanation) of […]


As families we are heirs of the lives of those who have gone before us. This is true for our individual families, as well as our families of faith. It has certainly been true lately at Shepherd. A few weeks ago Brian, our Elementary Age Ministry Coordinator was able to more fully live into the […]

The Gift of the Reformation

On Tuesday afternoon I was back at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey for my 20th class reunion. It was humbling and wonderful to be back on campus. The topic of the panel discussion on Tuesday was the 500th anniversary of the reformation being celebrated around the world this year in October. The best […]

Engagement Appeal

May 8, 2017 Dear Friends at SOTH: Our church council is launching a new strategic planning process we are calling an “Engagement Appeal.” The goal of our appeal is to create a connected family of faith through listening sessions that will culminate in a new strategic plan with broad-based input and support. You and your […]

Seeing Faith through New Eyes

This past Lent we took a decidedly different approach to Wednesday evening worship services. We invited guest speakers to join us asking them to reflect on our Christian faith through the lens of our Muslim brothers and sisters. We heard from two Luther Seminary professors, the Program Director of Refugee Services at Lutheran Social Services, […]

Finding Common Ground – A Panel Discussion

Who we are: One of the things I hope for our family of faith is to be relationally connected enough to have difficult, honest conversations and remain brothers and sisters in Christ. Our vision statement indicates that we desire to be a “connected family of faith, inspired by God to positive influence our community and world.” […]

Gratitude for Normal

Last weekend my family was out to dinner at Fletcher’s on Lake Minnetonka. There was no special occasion other than the fact that my Dad is a “Groupon” pro and had managed to wrangle two free walleye dinners! The seven of us were crammed into a booth in the upscale upstairs fancy part of the […]


 “Grand County authorities have identified the 17-year-old Texas girl who died Wednesday after skiing into a tree on an intermediate trail at Winter Park Resort. Alicyn Mitcham, from Colmesneil, Texas, was pronounced dead at Denver Health East Grand ER after efforts to revive her failed, according to county Coroner Brenda Bock. Bock said an autopsy […]

All Dogs Go to Heaven

For sixteen years Luther was my constant companion, camping, hiking, boating, working, swimming, running, cross country skiing, and sitting guard by the hot tub as I soaked. His super power was being immediately in the way. Carrying in the groceries… he was blocking the path to the fridge. Getting up from bed to go to […]