• The ELCA Division for Church in Society distributed its report Gambling: A Study for Congregations to all member churches. The study's purpose is to encourage discussion among members on various gambling issues. For single copies of the study call (800) 638-3522, Ext. 2712. Anyone who would like multiple copies of the study should call (800) 328-4648. The charge is $1 for each copy plus shipping and handling.
• More than 30 pastors and lay leaders from predominantly African American ELCA congregations attended a training event on developing a radio ministry for outreach in African American communities. The participants learned elements of radio broadcasting, how to identify their target audience and how to write an effective script. "The Lutheran church and its ministries are not well-known in [many African American communities]," said Patrick Keen, pastor of Imani Lutheran Church, Chicago. "Radio is one way to develop outreach efforts in order for people to get excited about the church."
• Lutheran-affilated Bethany of the Northwest and Providence General Medical Center, both of Everett, Wash., developed an ecumenical partnership and formed the city's first transitional care service center, providing rehabilitation for those with serious illness or injury.
• The National Association for Campus Activities gave its Multicultural Program Award to Augustana College, Rock Island, Ill., for the school's programs and services regarding cultural diversity and awareness. Programs offered at the school last year included performances by the African American theater group MPACCT, an interactive lecture by journalist Charles Perez and a video series presented at Augustana's Black Culture House.
• California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks, welcomed Margareta Hegardt, former Swedish ambassador and consul general, as its first diplomat-in-residence this spring. Hegardt served as ambassador of Sweden to the Republic of Ireland and counsel general to Northern Germany.
• Newberry [S.C.] College received the largest gift in the school's 142-year history. An anonymous donor provided more than $7 million. The Board of Trustees said these funds will be used to strengthen the college's endowment fund.
• Bread for the World started an Offering of Letters campaign, urging congregations to write Congress asking for foreign policies that benefit the poor and hungry people of Africa, not the mainly high-income people and businesses. "People of faith and our legislators must see the connection between public policy of the U.S. and the lives of people in other parts of the world," said Russell Siler, director of the Lutheran Office for Governmental Affairs.
© 2013 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers