In visiting the Wright County Fairgrounds last fall, I remembered the 2016 LLC Summer Services in Essa, Ontario, and I wondered how God would bless in 2017. The facilities were similar in that both are outdoor airy venues. But, of course, one worries—what will the weather be like? We know that Minnesota summers can be quite hot and humid.
However, God blessed the 2017 Summer Services in many ways, including the weather. It was another opportunity for us North Americans to experience in a small way what Summer Services in Finland might be like. All told there were approximately 6000–6500 services guests; over 800 stayed onsite in the 120 RVs and the many tents. Temporary showers were built for the services guests staying onsite. Without kitchen facilities, 19,600 meals had to be prepared and brought to the service site as needed. As it has been in recent years, the grill was a popular choice for meals.
Most important was that God blessed the services with His Word. The motto, “Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice” (John 18:37), was woven throughout the sermons, and the tired traveler left comforted and refreshed. We thank the Heavenly Father for this time of refreshment, and we also thank the believers in the hosting Cokato congregation and the supporting LLC congregations in the Midwestern Area for their service and labor of love.
LLC Board Meeting, June 30
- Visiting speaker-brother, Arvo Pyykölä, relayed greetings from LLC’s sister organization in Finland, the SRK. Pyykölä spoke of the importance of mutual
work between the organizations and how it helps to foster unity. He also gave a glimpse of the magnitude of work being done by the SRK with 48
confirmation schools in 2017 (2400 students) and an additional 312 camp events with 18,000 attendees at the various SRK camp facilities.
- Board members reviewed planning updates for current Summer Services and future Winter and Summer Services. The 2018 Summer Services will be hosted
by the Seattle Laestadian Lutheran Church at Glacier Peak High School in Snohomish, Wash., July 5–8. The motto for the services is, “Be still,
and know that I am God” (Ps. 46:10). The 2018 Phoenix Winter Services will be held February 22–25, with the motto: “With God all things are possible”
(Mark 10:27). Welcome!
- The Board reviewed plans for the LLC website redesign. The technology committee plans for the website to go live in late July.
- In commemoration of the 500-year anniversary of the Reformation, a book about Luther, written by Finnish authors, is being translated. Hopes are for
publication this fall.
- On June 29, the LLC signed documents purchasing 70 acres of land at Silver Springs, near Monticello. The Minnesota Facilities Committee (MFC) will
work closely with the LLC regarding future planning.
- The LLC finance committee is working closely with the Personnel-Facilities committee in reviewing plans for renovation and expansion of SLC, set to
begin this fall (2017), and for future planning and development at Silver Springs.
- Work has been completed to update confirmation curriculum for an eight-day confirmation school. This material will be piloted at SLC Confirmation School
2 this summer.
- Cooperative work continues between the LLC and SRK to provide English material for Summer Services radio programming in Finland.
- As part of our commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, LLC is sponsoring a Bible Camp, October 20–22, 2017, at Stony Lake Camp.
Juhani Liukkonen and Antti Paananen, from the SRK, will serve along with LLC staff.
- Aaron Wuollet, recently added to the Publications Committee, replaced retiring member Ken Hill. We thank Ken for his many years of service. Noted was
a list of books being planned for publication and the need for project managers.
LLC Annual Meeting, July 1
- LLC Delegates reviewed and gave support for the proposed 2018 LLC Operating Plan and reelected Randy Herrala, Sam Roiko, Duane Pirness (Midwestern
Area), and Ken Wuollet (Western Area) to three-year terms. Carey Simonson replaced David Anderson, who retired after many years of service. We
thank Dave and wish him God’s abundant blessings in retirement.
- With the LLC budget over two million, we thank the membership for continued support—no dues increase is needed.
- Future Summer Services hosting congregations: 2018–Seattle; 2019–Rockford; 2020–Ishpeming; 2021–Northern Minn.
- Delegates will be prepared to give a detailed report to congregations when meeting minutes have been finalized.
Updates on LLC Activities
- The Saskatchewan congregations offer to purchase the Girl Guides Camp on Lake Diefenbaker has been accepted. This facility will serve the believers
well. May God continue to bless this endeavor as only He can.
- With the purchase of 70 acres at Silver Springs completed, meetings are now being held between the LLC, MFC, and the Rockford Summer Services Planning
Committee exploring the possibility of using the property as a Summer Service site in 2019.
- The LLC update tour has been well received in the congregations where it’s been held, with many positive comments and important feedback.
- The first LLC Spanish Language Camp will take place September 22–24 at Kamp Kipa. Attendance is encouraged by those interested in Spanish. Sign up
Remember to spend time with your families before school starts this fall!
August 2017 Voice of Zion