The synod is planning a special service in downtown Milwaukee on Oct. 31, 2017, to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation.
“The blessings that we enjoy today—knowing God’s grace and knowing the true God through the Word he has spoken to us in the Scriptures—have come to us as a result of what God did through Martin Luther. For 500 years, the gospel message has been preached and proclaimed to us and through us. Those are blessings that we can’t help but celebrate in a special way,” says Rev. Mark Schroeder, WELS president.
The service will be the culmination of two continuing education opportunities for WELS called workers held at the Wisconsin Center in downtown Milwaukee on Oct. 30-31—Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary’s annual symposium and the Wisconsin Lutheran State Teachers’ Conference, which will be inviting WELS educators nationwide to participate. The service, tentatively planned to start at 2 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017, will be held downtown in a venue large enough to accommodate the thousands of called workers attending the conferences as well as all WELS members who are able to attend. “Although worship is taking place at the end of these called workers’ conferences, it is intended as a service of thanksgiving and celebration for all WELS members,” says Schroeder.
Choirs from all the WELS high schools will be invited to participate in the service. “With so many of the synod’s called workers present and choirs from all of the synod’s high schools, I can only imagine the closing service on Tuesday afternoon, the exact day of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation,” says Rev. Paul Prange, administrator of the Board for Ministerial Education and part of the service planning committee.
Special gifts will fund the event. According to Prange, the plan is to offer financial help to called workers whose travel costs might exceed their usual fall conference expenses.
WELS districts and conferences also are planning celebratory events in 2017 on the weekends surrounding Reformation day. The WELS website will be updated as information becomes available.
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Volume 102, Number 12
Issue: December 2015
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