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Missions History

Footprints Of Faith 

Part 3

Footprints in Missions

Faith Lutheran Ottawa has been actively involved with missions.  The footprints of Faith reach around the world.  Many people have given support for missionaries like Roger and Alice Buck, missionaries to Togo, Africa.  Roger was a member of Faith congregation.  He graduated from college as a Director of Christian Education.  He became interested in mission work and went to Togo as a missionary and now is a DCE in Wisconsin.

Faith has also supported the Garden City, Kansas mission, Lutheran Social Services, the Ottawa Ministerial Association, and the Lutheran Hour Ministries. Currently, Faith supports the Kansas District missionaries:  Tom and Heidi Norton and their family.  The Norton’s are missionaries to Guinea, West Africa.

Faith has also financially supported the following:¬†¬†Lutheran World Missions, Church of the Redeemer, Essex, England; Mission, India; LCMS World Relief, and Guinea‚ÄĒKansas District partnership.¬†¬†Our footprints are also visible in¬†Mexico¬†where members helped build homes for those in need.¬†¬†Faith is an Ablaze! Congregation.¬†¬†This Synodical program will help us continue to reach out to our own community and around the world.

Faith provides support within the state of Kansas

Haskell LIGHT, a Lutheran student ministry at Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, KS, provides a safe environment for students to explore, who they are and what they hope to become.  Haskell LIGHT provides Bible study, a place to fellowship with friends, a quiet place to study, or a place where someone will simply listen. 

Lutheran of the Good Shepherd in Kansas City, Missouri, is a ministry supporting both the African-American and Hispanic communities in the downtown Kansas City and the grater Kansas City urban area.  Each year members of Faith Lutheran go to the Mission to work in their Christmas Store.  Needed items are collected and taken to the Mission.  In addition to physical help, funds are also donated to the Mission.

The Love Fund provides financial support to members and families in our area.

Hope House Christian Care Center:  Hope House has a variety of services, including a Food Pantry, as well as other items, such as used clothing and home supplies. Hope House is a not-for-profit organization supported to a large degree by a few churches in the community, including Faith Lutheran.  Over the last several years, we’ve had a campaign to provide food products for Hope House.  Several of our members volunteer at Hope House to help distribute the food and other items to those in our community that need this help.

LifeCare Center of Ottawa:  Our congregation supports Lutherans for Life and works with the local LifeCare Center for Women in Ottawa.  For the past four years our church has taken part in the Baby Bottle Boomerang from Mother’s Day to Father’s Day.  The funds gathered help support and assist girls during pregnancy and after their children are born.  Many of our members help clean the center and work at the center on a volunteer basis.  Lutherans for Life is an organization that works to educate about abortion and post-abortion healing, end-of-life issues, bioethics, and family life with a biblical perspective.  Our local chapter makes the LifeDate magazines available in the narthex and has educational information about all these issues at different times of the year.

Other areas of outreach where Faith has left footprints over the years, and continues to do so, include the following:

Prayer Chain:¬†A significant¬†Footprints¬†of Faith Lutheran began in 1984.¬†¬†There were some long and severe illnesses which were of special concern and care in the congregation.¬†¬†Marji Harris and Kathy Graves began by calling members of the congregation to keep them informed of each situation.¬†¬†This began with about a dozen members.¬†¬†Over the years more and more members desired to be included, so a ‚ÄúTelephone Prayer Chain‚ÄĚ was arranged in circle format.¬†¬†This meant that anyone could start a prayer by calling the next person in the chain, then they to the next, etc. until it came back to the person who had placed it.¬†¬†Since some worked outside the home, two ‚Äúchains‚ÄĚ were formed ‚Äď the ‚ÄúDaytime Chain‚ÄĚ and the ‚ÄúEvening Chain‚ÄĚ so it could reach everyone more rapidly.¬†¬†Once e-mail came into existence members realized that they could be contacted much faster by this form of communication, so a list was set up for e-mail.¬†¬†Marvin and Wilma Brockschmidt and Marilyn Zimmerman volunteered to co-chair this listing on their home computers, receive the Prayer Request, and send it on via the e-mail listing.¬†¬†Most of the members receive the Prayer Request now in this manner, however, several who do not have e-mail access are still called by telephone and follow the chain in that way.¬†¬†Many of the Prayer Requests come through¬†Faith¬†Lutheran¬†Church¬†office, others come directly to the ‚ÄúPrayer Chain‚ÄĚ, but each is approved for placement on the ‚ÄúPrayer Chain‚ÄĚ by a personal or family contact.¬†¬†Today the privilege of serving our members and friends is led by Margi Harris, with over seventy persons involved in this ministry.¬†¬†Our gracious, loving God has blessed this¬†footprint¬†in many ways, for which ‚ÄúPrayers of Thanks‚ÄĚ are often included as well.¬†¬†

Faith Ambassador:  In the past, each Sunday visitors to our church were greeted by members of the Ambassadors.  Those members did their best to make sure visitors (whether new or repeat) were identified and approached with friendly conversation.  We want all visitors to have a God-praising, uplifting Worship Service at Faith Lutheran and we want them to walk out our doors with positive thoughts about their worship experience with us.

Youth:  Christal Chapman served as the youth director, 2006-2010, and worked with the youth of our congregation with an emphasis on the middle school and high school.  She  held lock-ins for the youth, as well as other activities, for the past four years.  She worked to get our youth involved with youth from other local youth groups.  In addition to working with our youth, she helped maintain our website, which serves to give information to others about our church and its activities.

Vacation Bible School:  From our earliest days, and continuing each year in July, we hold Vacation Bible School for preschool through grade school children. This is a fun time of fellowship, crafts, and learning about Jesus, with many of our middle school and high school youth helping out as volunteers. We invite our entire community to participate, and developed life-long friendships and bring whole families into worship from this outreach.

Mexico Trip:  In 1995, Sally and Mike Crane made a trip to Mexico to help build a home for those who were in need.  In 1998, they went to Mexico and worked through the Ysleta Mission in El Paso, Texas, which is a Lutheran Church Missouri Synod mission church.  They continued to help build a church in Juarez through the present time.  In 1999, Pete Lange, the DCE for Faith, became interested in this project and worked with youth of Faith and the Cranes to build a house inMexico working with the Amor Ministries which is based in San Diego and is a nondenominational organization that works with churches to find families for the house.  Since 1999, the church has sent at lest one person each year representing our church to build housing.  While there they work to minister to people in the area.  They need someone who can speak Spanish to help talk to the people in Mexico.  The last three years they have provided Bibles for the missions which were donated by Faith’s Saturday Morning Men’s Breakfast and Bible study.  The Bibles are in Spanish.  The family, for whom the house is built, is given a Bible as well as a quilt from the LWML.  It is not very costly to make the trip and it gives all who go the opportunity to experience the international mission field.

Biker’s Sunday:  In connection with the Christian Motorcycle Association, and anyone with a motorcycle, a dinner was held in 2008 after a church service in which lunch was provided in part by the Association and by pot luck contributions from members of Faith congregation.

In 2008 the congregation worked with Habitat for Humanity:  Local Thrivent members, and others, made monetary donations, worked on the building of the home by providing physical labor, babysitting for workers, or food for lunch.

KOFO Radio:  Each Sunday morning, our pastor provides a 15 minute devotional message along with Christian music.  This message reaches out to people all across Ottawa and the Franklin County area.

LWML and LLL (Lutheran Women‚Äôs Missionary League and Lutheran Layman‚Äôs League):¬†¬†During the 1960‚Äôs ‚Äď 1970‚Äôs Faith had a strong LLL group.¬†¬†The LWML has been a part of the congregation from its very beginning and still meets for mission outreach and providing for needs of the congregation.

Quilting Ministry:  Members make and distribute quilts to Hope House, Good Shepherd Mission, and Lutheran World Relief.   The quilting group is addressing a need locally and around the world by supplying bedding for warmth to those who might otherwise have none. 

Additional areas:  In the past, we participated in the local annual CROP WALK, led by Dick Williams, in which members either walked or contributed to those who did walk.  Participation in Bike Across Kansas is an event that several members attend.  Funds were donated to the Children’s Christian Concern Society.  Our facility is also available to service club meetings and other community activities.

Members of Faith have left many footprints over the last seventy-five years and will continue to do so.

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