From April 26–28, Cross of Christ, Boise, Idaho, hosted the 2018 Staff Ministers Conference.
Each year staff ministers travel from churches, schools, and parasynodicals around the country for a weekend of learning and fellowship. This year’s conference featured the theme “Continue in Christ,” based on the words of Colossians 2:6, “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him.” This message was chosen to encourage staff ministers as they commemorate the 25th anniversary of the staff ministry training program at Martin Luther College, New Ulm, Minn., this year.
In addition to the daily devotions and a worship service, four special sessions were held at the conference. Staff Minister Chad White of Holy Word, Austin, Tex., spoke on personal spiritual growth. Rev. Mark Cares of Truth in Love Ministry in Nampa, Idaho, presented on the principles of witnessing. Pastors and staff of Cross of Christ came together to discuss the challenges and joys of team ministry. Lastly, Staff Minister David Hochmuth of St. Andrew, Middleton, Wis., led a Bible study based on the conference theme “Continue in Christ,” where attendees considered how to approach spiritual hardships unique to different stages of life. The conference also hosted forums for four main areas of staff ministry—youth and family ministry, adult discipleship and leadership, evangelism and outreach, and worship and music.
Staff Minister Kristen Koepsell, coordinator of music and elementary education and fellowship at Cross of Christ, believes the time staff ministers spend together at the conference is critical: “Year after year attendees tell the board that the best part of the conference is the encouragement and support they receive from interacting with their fellow called workers. We benefit most simply by listening and talking to each other and sharing the truth of God’s grace.”
To learn more about Martin Luther College’s staff ministry training program, visit mlc-wels.edu. Also, watch the March 27, 2018, “Together” video update for an interview with Levi Nagel, staff minister of music and worship at St. John, Milwaukee, Wis.